Monday, April 21, 2014

Mount Kisco Hosts MasterCard Westchester PGA

Mount Kisco #16 photo by John Fortunato
Looking for some competitive golf the way it should be played--in matches? Head for Mount Kisco Country Club next week for the MasterCard Westchester PGA Championship, a 64-player match play tournament featuring the best pros in the area going head-to-head over one of the Met PGA Section's most demanding courses.

2013 champion Greg Bisconti will defend his title against Carl Alexander, Frank Bensel, Charlie Meola, Colin Amaral and other top players like Mount Kisco head pro Chris Case.

Monday, April 28, will see first round matches, followed by rounds two and three on Tuesday, Quarters and Semis on Wednesday, and the Final match on Thursday, May 1. First prize is $4,250.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Brynwood Stands Up to Met PGA Pro Assistant Field

Brynwood Golf and Country Club in Armonk hosted the 2014 Metropolitan PGA Westchester Pro Assistant’s Golf Tournament Monday, April 14. The field of 220 PGA professionals from all over the county and Connecticut enjoyed a beautiful, breezy, spring day. What they didn't do was tear up the course.

The low round of the day was played by Mark Ledom and Chris Toulson of Sunningdale CC. They won the event with an 8 under par 62. Of the 157 teams in the event, only 49 were under par and the remaining 108 teams finished at even par or higher.  The average score for the tournament was 72. Considering that the event was a best ball tournament, that's pretty high for a bunch of guys who make their living playing and teaching the game. Brynwood measures just 6,348 yards from the tips, with a 71.3 rating and 133 slope.




Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Friday, April 18, 2014

Sun Mountain Helps Us Walking Golfers

Sun Mountain’s newest lightweight golf stand bag is the Front 9, which harkens back some 30 years to the name of one of the company's first bags.  Front 9 is a compact, lightweight stand bag for the walking golfer. Efficiently-sized, yet big enough to carry a full set of clubs, a handful of balls and a rain suit (what more do you need?), Front 9 has a new 8.5” oval top with a flared opening. Front 9 has three, full-length club dividers, six pockets, and uses the X-Strap® Dual Strap System. Front 9 is available now in men’s and women’s styles with a retail price of $169.99.

Weighing only 3.8 lbs., Front 9 is extremely lightweight. Yet, with the newly designed 8.5” oval top, the bag can easily accommodate a full set of 14 clubs. Add in the latest innovation of a flared opening and getting the clubs in and out of the bag is a cinch. Front 9 also incorporates the Sun Mountain-invented, now industry-standard, integrated lift assist handle to make picking the bag up and setting it down easier than ever.

One could call the bag “small”, but that might leave the wrong impression. Efficiently sized is maybe the better description since along with holding a full set of clubs, Front 9 offers six pockets including a beverage pouch, velour-lined valuables pocket, full-length clothing pocket and accessory pockets.

Front 9 incorporates the Sun Mountain X-Strap® Dual Strap System which provides a balanced, easy carry and works well as a double strap, or as a single strap for those shorter carries.

Front 9 includes all of the advancements one expects from a Sun Mountain golf bag: patented roller bottom leg mechanism, high-tensile aluminum legs, full-length club dividers, lumbar support hip pad, umbrella attachment, towel holder, top-mounted leg mechanism for added stability, pen holder, leg lock system so it’s easier to use on riding carts, and a coordinating rainhood.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Summer Camp For All at Brynwood


imgLooking for a special summer camp treat for your youngster? Even if you're not a member, you can enroll your budding golf or tennis star in Brynwood's Junior Golf and Tennis Camp. The weekly sessions start June 30 and run Monday through Friday, August 29th.  And while members save $100 per week, non-members can participate for only $699 per session.  Enroll a sibling, too, and receive a 15% discount. Considering what's involved, that's a lot of fun for the buck!



Here's a typical day at camp:

9:00am-9:15am Orientation
9:15am-11:15am Golf
11:15am-11:30am Break
11:30am-12:00pm Lunch
12:00pm-12:45pm Field Sports
12:45pm-1:00pm Snack
1:00pm-1:45pm Swimming
1:45pm-2:00pm Break
2:00pm-4:00pm Tennis
4:00pm Departure

For registration and more information, visit www.brynwoodclub.com.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Met PGA Honors Golf's Leaders

Joe Felder and Rob Labritz
photo courtesy Met PGA
Yesterday's Metropolitan PGA Educational Forum  honored a small group of top-notch contributors to the game not just in the NY area but throughout the nation.  Hundreds of pros took time out of their busy spring schedules to not only hear fascinating speakers like Mark Broadie, Mike Diffley, and Michael Breed, but to deliver well-earned applause to some real leaders of the game.

Met PGA Special Awards went to three outstanding contributors:

Joe Felder, 2013 Met PGA Professional of the Year, has served as head pro at Griff Harris, the municipal facility of the Town of Greenwich, CT, for nearly 25 years. Under Joe's direction, the course and other facilities have grown to be one of the best in the area. Among his many accomplishments, however, one stands out: Joe has grown a junior program that could serve as a model for anyone in the industry. When he arrived at Griff Harris, there were 74 juniors in the program. Today there are over 750. Who said golf can't appeal to youngsters? All it takes is a leader like Joe Felder.

The 2013 Met PGA Player of the Year is Rob Labritz, Director of Golf of GlenArbor GC in Bedford, NY. This was the second time Rob has won the title, but it certainly wasn't the easiest. In fact, his season-long duel with Danny Balin of Burning Tree came down to the final event of the season, the Trieber Memorial at Wheatley Hills. Along with Rob's victories in the PGA Head Pro Championship at Tuxedo and the Met PGA Professional Championship at Rockland, the Treiber Memorial win put his name on the top of the list.

Mary Beth Childs was awarded the 2013 Sam Snead Award, making her the first female recipient of the Met Section's only honor that is bestowed on both professionals and amateurs. Mary Beth's role in the sponsorship by Lincoln dealers of numerous Met Section events for over fourteen years is just one of her many contributions to the game.

The Met PGA Hall of Fame inducted three members yesterday:

Jim McLean is well-known to golfers around the world as one of the leading instructors in the game and founder of the well-respected Jim McLean golf schools. He began his teaching career, however, as an assistant at Westchester Country Club in 1975. He also served as head professional at Sunningdale, Quaker Ridge, and Sleepy Hollow before moving to the Doral in Miami to launch his schools. Jim was recognized by the Met PGA as Teacher of the Year in 1986 and named National Teacher of the Year by the PGA of America in 1994.

Craig Shankland's roots to the Met PGA run deep. He served as the head pro at Rye GC, Middle Bay CC, and Fairview CC, and served as the section's president among many other positions in the organization. He was Met Professional of the Year in both 1974 and 1975, and was named PGA National Teacher of the Year in 2001.

Bruce Zabriski dominated golf in the Met area for nearly three decades, winning 22 events including the NYS Open, Met Open, Met PGA Championship, and many, many others. He competed in eleven major national championships, played the professional tours for seven years, and was named the National PGA Club Professional Player of the Year a record five times. After tiring of life on the road, he returned to the Met area to teach at Fresh Meadow, Oyster Bay, Winged Foot, and Westchester CC. Eventually, he took positions as head professional at Trump West Palm Beach, Old Palm GC, and Mayacoo Lakes in West Palm before returning to Westchester CC in 2012 to teach.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Sandy Tatum Words to Live Golf By

Sandy Tatum's aptly-titled memoir, A Love Affair with the Game, is a collection of the former USGA President's memos, columns, correspondence, and just plain random thoughts about the game converted into a gentlemanly thought-provoking book. Historians of the game may be disappointed that it's not a blow-by-blow description of his career at the highest reaches of amateur golf, but readers who recognize that golf is more than millionaire tour players adding to their pile on Sunday afternoons will recognize a kindred spirit.

Tatum spends a little time talking about how he got into the game and what he accomplished as a young amateur--including winning the 1942 individual NCAA National Championship while graduating Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University and winning the Danish Amateur while studying at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar. The bulk of the book, though, consists of short essays about the people and places he's encountered--good and bad--during sixty years in the game.

I was particularly impressed by Tatum's never-sent letter to Tiger Woods. It was written at the time just before Tiger turned pro, dropping out of Stanford in the process to fully cash in on his prodigious talent. For those who believe accumulating a pile of money is the highest purpose in life, Tatum's comments will come off as sanctimonious bulls--t.  If, like me, you believe our time on this planet can be richer if we look beyond our bank statements, you'll appreciate what Tatum had to say. He pointed out that Woods would benefit greatly from a complete education, as anyone who has heard him speak in anything more than soundbites knows is very true. The other point he made is that Woods was setting a horrible example for other young people tempted to throw away their lives to chase the one-in-a-million chance of succeeding in professional sports. The letter, written in 1996, was sadly prophetic. There is more to life than video games and hookers.

Sandy Tatum may personify the stereotypical USGA "blue jacket" to some, his rectitude is refreshing in a time when golf seems to have degenerated into a contest to see who can land the biggest television contract.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

New Balance Expands Golf Lines




On the heels of the recently released lightweight Minimus spikeless golf shoe, global athletic shoe producer New Balance announces the addition of two new cleated styles to its golf footwear collection. Both styles feature a REVlite™ 10mm drop* midsole for lightweight cushioning and premium responsiveness. All New Balance cleated golf shoes feature the CHAMP® ONE-Lok® fastening system with ZARMA® cleats**.

"Golf industry feedback has been outstanding in regards to the design, fit and comfort features of our golf shoes," said Bruce Schilling, General Manager of Golf and Tennis at New Balance. "These cleated models offer lightweight innovative athletic design, a low drop midsole, and are available in multiple widths to appeal to a wide variety of golfers."



NBG2002

This ultra-lightweight athletic model features a premium microfiber leather upper with a two-year limited waterproof warranty***. The low-profile REVlite 10 mm drop* midsole provides lightweight cushioning and premium responsiveness. The lightweight exoskeleton TPU outsole incorporates the new, low-profile CHAMP® ONE-Lok® fastening system with ZARMA® cleats.


NBG2001
With a neo-traditional design, this shoe features a premium two-year limited waterproof warranty** leather upper and a saddle stability cage. The low-profile REVlite 10 mm drop* midsole provides lightweight cushioning and premium responsiveness. The lightweight exoskeleton TPU outsole incorporates the new, low-profile CHAMP® ONE-Lok® fastening system with ZARMA® cleats.

Both models offer styles in regular (D) and wide (4E) widths. They are available now from golf retailers or www.newbalance.com.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf