Friday, November 13, 2015

Big News, Saying Goodbye, and No Time To Rest!

Hello and welcome to "The Greenkeeper"!  Today is Friday, November 13th and earlier this week some exciting news I vaguely hinted about in January (CLICK HERE) was finally announced.  That's right, I'm talking about the United States Golf Association bringing the 2018 Mid-Amateur Championship to Charlotte Country Club in late September of that year.  Carolina Golf Club will serve as the companion course for the 36-hole stroke play portion of championship qualifying before the field is cut to 64 players advancing to match play at Charlotte Country Club.  Here is the LINK to the official press release courtesy of the USGA and here is the LINK to the story as it appeared in the Charlotte Observer earlier this week.  Granted Charlotte Country Club is hosting the championship, but believe me any level of involvement with a USGA national championship is major league.  The tournament countdown has already started at Golf Course Maintenance!

In other news, today I said goodbye to four young lads that have been just an absolute joy to mentor. Sky, Sing, Pong, and Aek (pronounced Ache) are heading home to Thailand.  This marked the sixth consecutive year we used international interns through the World International Student Exchange to serve as seasonal staff.  Over the past six years we have hosted young men from Ukraine, Moldova, Ireland, England, Thailand, and Philippines.  This year's class was our best ever with these four young men from Thailand joining two others (Joe and Gift) from the Philippines.  Joe and Gift will be with us a few more weeks.
From L-R: Sky, Aek, Pong, Sing

Group Selfie!
The photos above were taken back on April 11th.  That's Joe in the red cap turned backwards and Gift sporting the throwback Montreal Expos cap.  Notice how much dormant turf was still evident in the rough, what a strange weather year 2015 has been!  

Speaking of weather, did you know we received just under six inches rain in the month of October (5.71") and thus far we received an additional 7.17 inches in November!  That's right, over 7 inches rain just in the first two weeks of November this year.  Seems our usual wet summer and dry fall decided to switch places on us this year.  As the growing season for bermudagrass comes to a close things have definitely been challenging with regards to making pre-emergent herbicide applications, Spring Dead Spot fungicide applications, and winter colorant applications.  Thankfully we decided to split the pre-emergent applications this year so we do have the first one under our belts.  We will get cranking again soon now that conditions permit our 300 gallon sprayer on the fairways without damage.

With the traditional busy fall golf season now in the rear-view mirror (save for the upcoming Pig Roast Shotgun next weekend) you might think there would be time for us hard working superintendents to rest.  Quite the contrary as education season kicks off next week with the annual Carolinas Golf Course Superintendents Association Conference and Show.  As a member of the Carolinas GCSA Board of Directors, not only will I be attending the conference this year but I will also play a role behind the scenes.  Assistant Superintendent Ben Albrecht will be with me in attendance as we represent Carolina Golf Club and attend various seminars, lectures, and the trade show.  This year I'm also a speaker as I will be joining Tony Nysse, Golf Course Superintendent of Old Marsh Golf Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida and Pat Jones, Publisher and Editorial Director of Golf Course Industry magazine in presenting a professional development class on communications.  The three of us will attempt to help other superintendents and assistants better understand the role social media plays in today's society, and how they may be able to better use the various platforms to their advantage. Funny, it was this time two years ago (CLICK HERE) I joined Twitter and now they have me teaching a class on it, not sure what to make of that!

Oh well, hope everyone enjoys the sunshine while it hangs around a few more days.  Brace for the cold temperatures moving in and don't be surprised if we have a frost delay either morning this weekend.  We pride ourselves at Carolina for making the effort to get you, your fellow members, and your guests on the course as quickly as possible.  We only ask you be patient and enjoy a second cup of coffee!

See you on the course,

Matthew Wharton, CGCS

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