Tuesday, October 9, 2018

8 Green Expansion - Day 2 of Excavating


Here are pictures from day two of Renaissance Golf Design with Brian Slawnik behind the wheel and Don Placek assisting.  




Pre-Construction
Click to enlarge the images.




Friday, September 28, 2018

Renovations Have Started and my Two Favorites


 The two projects that I am the most excited about are expanding the 8th green back to its near original size and building two indoor golf simulators that will be installed in the expanded 19th hole.
Here is a sample of what we'll be building.  Our ceiling size won't have that additional space above the stations like this rendering though.  Diane, Scott and I toured many facilities in Grand Rapids last week and stopped at the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame facility being built at Ferris State University.  


The Michigan Hall of Fame at Ferris State University is planning to have five indoor Trackman simulators and three indoor simulators that you hit to the outdoor range.



Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Dr. James Beard and Traverse City Golf & CC


It was sad news to hear yesterday that Dr. Beard had passed away.  As everyone has said, he was a true legend in the turfgrass research field.  Dr. Beard has a great history with northern Michigan as well as with Traverse City Golf & Country Club and I got to fit into that his history a few times and find out what a kind man he was.  

I met Dr. Beard when I was an assistant at Crystal Downs Country Club.  He was in contact with Mike Morris the superintendent about conducting some green speed research for him, I think the year was 1992.  I was lucky enough to perform that research for Mike and Jim every morning for two weeks on our nursery green.  Jim had a summer home in Leelanau County and was also a past member of our local chapter, The Northern Michigan Turf Managers Association.

In 2001 the chapter gave Ed Karacheski the Distinguished Service Award.  Ed was the golf pro and superintendent at TCGCC for over 30 years and was a founding member of the NMTMA.  Ed's son Jim accepted the award as Ed had died a few years earlier.  Dr. Beard sent a letter to the chapter describing the history he had with Ed, MSU and Traverse City Golf & CC.

Jump back to 1963 when Dr. Beard planted his first test plots for Michigan State University in Traverse City.  Here is a link to that letter Beard History at TCGCC


Dr. Beard at TCGCC during the MSU Field Day in 1972.  Our tennis courts currently reside there now.
The first snow mold research trials  
Fine fescue treatment trials near 15 tee and not pictured to the left of this were the first glyphosate research trials in the country.

Seed mixtures trials

Now jump ahead to 2008.  After attending one of Dr. Beard's seminars, I introduced myself and invited him back to the golf course because you could still see the rough bluegrass trials he planted with Dr. Rieke in many fairways and I thought he might like the tour.  Jim contacted me in 2010 and wanted to see the course and was wondering if his son and granddaughter could play golf while we toured and had lunch.  She played golf for Texas A&M and shot 74 that day.  It was a really bad summer patch year on two of my worst draining fairways so although I wanted the place to look perfect, I took this time to talk about my issues and challenges.     




Dr. Beard and Ed Karcheski 1972

Dr. Beard and me in the same location 2010
Rest in peace Dr. Beard and thank you for your time.

Steve Hammon
                                     

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Golf Course Update






It looks like the 2018 golf season has finally arrived.  The driving range is open today and the dry nine will be open tomorrow, Thursday the 26th at 9:00.  Carts are available and we'll have all 18 holes open next Monday the 30th. 

With some warmer weather we'll have the course looking as good as this drone picture from last year's Kids Night Out Slip n Slide as soon as we can.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Freezing and Thawing

The best recipe for healthy turf in the spring is keeping a solid blanket of snow out on the golf course all winter.  We did have a late January thaw but all of the greens remained covered in snow.  This latest February rain and warm thaw had about everything 1/2 melted during the day then it all freezes again at night.    

One of the danger zones in the spring is when we get some upper 40s and lower 50s with melting snow then a cold front comes in and temps drop into the teens or single digits which is called a flash freeze.  This can cause the cells in the tiny little grass plants to freeze and expand killing the grass.  The crown of the plant is the life of the plant and we need it to not expand with ice while it is coming out of dormancy.

It’s very common to get a lot of rain in late February and March for a few days then that freezes which isn’t the best scenario.  The best formula in the spring is once the snow starts to melt you want it to keep melting completely before refreezing again.  The freezing and thawing cycle is the worst.  We had some really bad ice damage and crown dehydration back in 2002 and 2003.


2002 - 7 greens had winter damage.


Let's keep our fingers cross for a quick warm up once spring arrives.  

Thursday, December 28, 2017

The Cross Country Trail is Open

The cross country trail is open for the season.  We made the trail longer this year as it follows 10, 11, 12 and 13 then it cuts over to 5 and goes back 4, 3, 2 and you can catch the loop again behind 10 green.  We groom the trail Mon/Wed/Friday between 10:00 and 12:00 pending on how long it takes to plow the clubhouse parking lot in the morning.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Cross Country Ski Trail Update


                            
Happy Holidays!

Besides plowing and sanding the clubhouse parking lot and repairing our fleet of golf course maintenance equipment for the 2018 season we will once again be grooming a cross-country ski trail this winter.  Mother Nature need to build up a solid base of at least 15 inches before we can start grooming the trail. 

We groom the trail Monday/Wednesday/Friday between 10:00-12:00 and this year we are going to make it a little longer per your requests.    

The trailhead begins in the parking lot next to the bag drop area.  The trail then goes down 10, 11, 12 and 13.  Then over to 5, 4, 3, & 2 backwards then it loops in again behind 9 tee.  This is where you can catch the loop again if you wish or head back. 


Load up your skis, bring the hot chocolate and enjoy the beautiful winter scenery on the golf course.  For all of you snowshoe enthusiast, feel free to explore any part of the golf course but please stay off the groomed ski trail.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,

Steve  


8 Green Expansion - Day 2 of Excavating

Here are pictures from day two of Renaissance Golf Design with Brian Slawnik behind the wheel and Don Placek assisting.   Click here ...