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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Brynwood Innovates with Membership Deals

Brynwood Golf & Country Club
Brynwood's #8, a challenging par three
NY Metro private clubs aren't known for their creativity when it comes to membership drives. During the beginnings of the economic downturn a few years ago, some sharpened their pencils and did some aggressive pricing to keep the doors open, but most of those pencils have dulled recently as membership rolls got a little fatter. Brynwood Golf & Country Club in Armonk is one that didn't stop working to attract new members--not because it needs them, but because that's the new way of doing business brought to the club by new owners who took over in 2010.

Zero initiation fees and reasonable memberships designed to fit the way different demographic groups use the club are just two of the ways Brynwood is creating a modern private club business. “We have a dynamic membership that demands the highest quality country club experience in a sophisticated, yet approachable environment,” says Josh Lowney, General Manager. “We feature a great golf course that is meticulously maintained, the best food I’ve seen at any country club thanks to our culinary team that joined us last year from Cipriani in New York City, and a social calendar that includes live music, dance parties and exclusive wine tasting dinners.”

Given the high end club experience, the membership packages become even more attractive. Here are some of the more popular for 2014:

Sports Memberships priced at $700 per month.  The Sports Membership includes tennis, pool, gym and all clubhouse and social activities.
Young Executive Membership priced at $962 per month.  This is a full family golf membership and one spouse needs to be under 40 years of age upon joining to qualify.
Classic Membership priced at $1,050 per month.  This is a full family golf membership and one spouse needs to be over 70 years of age upon joining to qualify.
Single Membership priced at $1,050 per month.  This is a golf membership where one spouse plays golf and the rest of the family can enjoy all of the club’s facilities other than the golf course.
Family Membership priced at $1,225 per month.  This is a full family membership where all family members can enjoy all of the club’s facilities. Children up to the age of 25 are included at no additional cost.

Brynwood is managed by Troon Golf and members are automatically enrolled in the Troon Prive’ program that allows them to play hundreds of Troon golf courses around the world.  The club facilities include an 18-hole, championship golf course, 7 Har-Tru tennis courts, an outdoor swimming pool, and a 65,000-square-foot clubhouse. The newly renovated clubhouse features an elegant lobby and ballroom that can accommodate up to 400 guests. There is also a sports lounge, a fully equipped fitness center, a business center and a children’s playroom with a movie theater and video games.

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

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Are You Ready for the US Open?

Paramount CC No. 18
The USGA today announced local qualifying sites for the 2014 US Open to be held on Pinehurst No. 2. If you think you're ready to take on the best golfers in the world in the most significant major in the game, here's where you can start the process:

May 5 - Mill River Club, Oyster Bay, N.Y. (LI)
May 7 - Paramount CC, New City, N.Y. (NJ/Hudson Valley)
May 13 - Bedens Brook, Skillman, N.J. (NJ #2)
May 14 - Whippoorwill Club, Armonk, N.Y. (Westchester)

All you need is a 1.4 handicap index (or less) and you, too can try to match the accomplishments of Ken Venturi (1964) and Orville Moody (1969), the only two players who won the U.S. Open after surviving local and sectional qualifying.

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

Sunday, February 23, 2014

EWGA Westchester Presents Golf Show Breakfast

The Executive Women's Golf Association (EWGA) Westchester chapter is sponsoring a breakfast at the Westchester Golf Show, Saturday, March 8, 9-11 AM, at the County Center.  It promises to be a great opportunity to learn more about the game (if you're a newbie) or to network with other women golfers (if you're not).

In addition to breakfast, your $25 fee includes admission to the golf show, a free buckets of balls at Fairview Golf, a Discount Card, and some really useful information about golf in the area and how you can be a part of it.

Learn about golf from the inside during a special presentation by Kyla Basso, LPGA and Director of Marketing for Paramount Country Club. You'll also see a fitness demonstration and get some insight into the costs of golf (less than you think!).

To register, go to ewgawestchester.com.

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

Friday, February 14, 2014

Bobby Jones 2014 Woven Collection

Bobby Jones, celebrating the apparel brand’s 25th anniversary in 2014, announced today that its Spring 2014 Collection features an extensive line of woven shirts perfect for relaxing at the clubhouse or even wearing to the office. The line of wovens offers a variety of colors, patterns and collar options designed to fit any style.  

Beginning with the traditional, the Solid Oxford from Bobby Jones is made of 100% cotton and features a button down collar and breast pocket. Available in five solid colors (Blue, Lavender, Mandarin, Tangerine and White) the Solid Oxford offers a splash of color to accompany the customary look with a plaid pattern inner collar.  
The Medal Plaid offers great style and comfort for men who prefer a spread collar look. Again made of 100% cotton and featuring a breast pocket, the Medal Plaid comes in Cerulean, Hyacinth and Melon hues, all in the tight plaid pattern.

For a more casual look, the Beach Plaid woven is the perfect option.  Available in Blue and Tangerine, both offerings incorporate an array of colors that mix together perfectly showcasing an ideal springtime vibe. The Beach Plaid is also made of 100% cotton and has a button-down collar.

With more than 20 variations of solids, plaids, stripes, piques and textures, the entire Bobby Jones Spring 2014 Woven Collection offers options to suit each discerning wearer’s tastes.

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

Monday, February 10, 2014

Engineers To Get Restoration Makeover

Golf course architecture firm Tripp Davis and Associates has recently completed a Master Plan for Long Island’s historic Engineers Country Club.  Originally designed by Herbert Strong and opened in 1917, Engineers hosted two national championships in its first four years, the 1919 PGA Championship and the 1920 U.S. Amateur, and quickly gained recognition as one of the best golf courses in the United States.  Davis has worked with Engineers to do a variety of smaller projects over the past decade, but the Club now has a commitment to move with more purpose towards restoring the golf course to its former glory, partly due to Davis’ recent Master Plan that helped the Club understand the value of what it has.

Part of this commitment is bringing on Matt Stoy as the Head Golf Course Superintendent.
Stoy comes to Engineers after spending close to six years as an Assistant and then Head Superintendent of the East Course at Merion Golf Club near Philadelphia, where he worked under Matt Schafer as an integral part of restorations/renovations work, and the preparation for the 2013 U.S. Open over the East Course.

"I am very excited to have Matt join Engineers and become part of the exciting work we are doing there,” said Davis.  “There are a lot of similarities between the East Course at Merion and Engineers, from the rolling terrain, the uniquely classic architecture, the compact sites, and the fact that both were among the best in the United States as of 1920.  A lot of stylistic elements that we want to restore at Engineers are also found on the East Course at Merion.  Our goal at Engineers is to reach a point where members and guests will see, feel and experience why Engineers deserved its early reputation as one of America’s finest designs.  Matt's invaluable experiences at Merion will be a significant part of making that happen.”

Stuart Lubow, the Greens Co-Chairman at Engineers, is excited about the direction they are headed.  "In golf course architect Tripp Davis, and in our new Head Superintendent Matt Stoy, we have two of the best at what they do,” he stated.  “We are committed to enhancing the historic quality of Engineers and we are very excited about where Tripp and Matt will lead us in the years to come."

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

Sunday, February 9, 2014

USGA Elects New Prez, Awards Contributors To The Game

Photos courtesy USGA
Thomas J. O’Toole Jr., of St. Louis, Mo., has been elected to serve a one-year term as the 63rd president of the United States Golf Association (USGA), which together with The R&A governs the game worldwide. The election of officers and the 15-member USGA Executive Committee also took place during the USGA’s Annual Meeting in the Village of Pinehurst, N.C.

As president, O’Toole, 56, assumes the leadership of the more than 300 professional staff and nearly 1,200 volunteers who serve the 119-year-old organization, and succeeds Glen D. Nager, of Washington, D.C., who served for two years as USGA president.

Bob Jones Award

The USGA announced earlier in the week that the late Payne Stewart will be the recipient of the 2014 Bob Jones Award. Stewart will be honored during a public ceremony as part of the festivities surrounding the 2014 U.S. Open Championship.

Presented annually since 1955, the Bob Jones Award is the USGA’s highest honor. It recognizes an individual who demonstrates the spirit, personal character and respect for the game exhibited by Jones, winner of nine USGA championships. Previous recipients of the award include many of golf’s finest champions like Francis Ouimet (1955), Babe Didrikson Zaharias (1957), Patty Berg (1963), Arnold Palmer (1971), Jack Nicklaus (1975), Ben Hogan (1976), Nancy Lopez (1998), Annika Sorenstam (2012) and Davis Love III (2013), as well as others who have contributed to the fabric of the game in other ways, including Richard S. Tufts (1967), Joseph C. Dey Jr. (1977), Bing Crosby and Bob Hope (1978), P.J. Boatwright Jr. (1993) and President George H.W. Bush (2008).

Known for his passion for golf, sportsmanship and philanthropy, Stewart won 11 professional events, including three major championships, during an 18-year PGA Tour career that was cut short by a fatal airplane accident in 1999, four months after his second U.S. Open victory. Stewart’s wife, Tracey, and their children, Chelsea and Aaron, will be presented with the USGA’s Bob Jones Award at a public ceremony in the Village of Pinehurst during U.S. Open week on Tuesday, June 10, at 5 p.m. EDT.

As part of the USGA Service Awards dinner, the following individuals were recognized:

Joe Dey Award

Presented annually since 1996, the USGA's Joe Dey Award recognizes an individual’s meritorious service to the game as a volunteer. The award is named for the late Joseph C. Dey Jr., who served as USGA executive director for 35 years, from 1934-69, and was later the first commissioner of the PGA Tour. The USGA honored Michael Cumberpatch, of Annapolis, Md., a contributor to the game on local and national levels for 20 years. Affiliated with the USGA since 1993, when he joined the Association’s Regional Affairs Committee, he has worked at 20 USGA championships, including the U.S. Open, U.S. Senior Open, U.S. Mid-Amateur and Men’s State Team Championships. He currently serves as the official-in-charge of U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying for the Washington, D.C., region.

Herbert Warren Wind Book Award

Established in 1987, the Herbert Warren Wind Book Award recognizes and honors outstanding contributions to golf literature while seeking to broaden the public’s interest in, and knowledge of, the game of golf. Wind, who died in 2005, was the famed writer for The New Yorker and Sports Illustrated who coined the phrase “Amen Corner” at Augusta National. He is the only writer to win the Bob Jones Award, the USGA’s highest honor.

Author Jeff Silverman’s “Merion: The Championship Story” is the 2013 recipient of the USGA’s Herbert Warren Wind Book Award. This extensively researched and carefully crafted book explores every aspect of one of the most respected and beloved clubs in the game. Merion’s successful hosting of the 2013 U.S. Open, 32 years after it last hosted the championship, was the final chapter in Silverman’s work. The club has hosted more USGA championships (18) than any other, making it a rich subject for a work of this magnitude.

Green Section Award

Presented annually since 1961, the USGA Green Section Award recognizes an individual’s distinguished service to the game of golf through his or her work with turfgrass, including research, maintenance and other areas that positively impact the arena upon which golf is played. The 2014 recipient is Dr. Peter Dernoeden, of Milton, Del., a nationally recognized turfgrass researcher and educator and professor emeritus of plant science and landscape architecture at the University of Maryland’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Over an extensive career, he led the design and management of turfgrass research programs focusing on weed and disease control, integrated pest management and sustainable fescue species.

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

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Orlimar Announces Progressive Irons

Orlimar Golf Company is introducing Tour3 irons, a progressive iron set designed to give the feel of a forged iron, yet the playability and forgiveness of a cast iron. The low, mid and high irons are specifically designed to maximize performance and shot making. The higher irons have more of a classic blade look and feel for scoring and the lower irons are designed for more forgiveness.

"The Tour3 irons are designed for the low-to-mid-handicap golfer looking for a little more forgiveness on their 4, 5, 6 and 7 irons, while not sacrificing the feel and workability of the scoring irons," said Alex Resnik, product marketing manager, Orlimar Golf. "Our player testing on the Tour3 irons has received high marks in feel, distance control and overall playability. Golfers especially like the look of the irons, they look very traditional but the cavity back on the lower irons and muscle back on the mid-irons provides the added forgiveness golfers need for consistency."

TheTour3 irons are made of 1025 carbon forged steel and are manufactured with a proprietary process that allows for a forged face with a cast cavity and classic satin finish. The company says the result is an iron with tremendous amount of feel off the clubhead combined with the playability and forgiveness benefits of a traditional cast club. The 3 and 4 irons feature an undercut cavity that increases the moment of inertia and lowers the center of gravity to allow you to swing with confidence. The 5, 6, and 7 irons have a mid-muscle back with added mass behind the sweet spot to generate consistent power and control with just enough perimeter weighting for forgiveness on less than perfect shots.  The 8, 9 and PW are pure muscle backs. The player will be able to work the ball more with these scoring irons.

The Orlimar Tour3  irons are available in a 3-PW set with True Temper® Dynamic Gold® R300, S300, and X100 shaft options, Golf Pride Pure® grips and are available in right-handed only. Custom fit shaft and grip options are also available. The suggested retail for a set of eight irons is $699.99.

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

Thursday, February 6, 2014

USGA To Allow Distance Measuring Technology in Ams

The United States Golf Association (USGA) has approved the use of distance-measuring devices (DMDs) in all USGA amateur championships and their respective qualifying events, beginning in 2014. The announcement was made today by the Championship Committee of the USGA through its independent decision-making process scheduled during the Association’s Annual Meeting in the Village of Pinehurst, N.C., and reflects a joint decision with The R&A, which together with the USGA governs the game worldwide.

The use of distance-measuring devices has been covered by an optional Local Rule, which has been available under the Rules of Golf since 2006 (see Note to Rule 14-3 of the Rules of Golf), and the USGA Championship Committee’s vote adopts this optional Condition for all USGA amateur championships in 2014.

This Local Rule will be introduced for the USGA’s amateur events only. It will not apply to the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open and U.S. Senior Open championships or their respective qualifying events.
The devices may be used in amateur championships to measure distance only, and may not be used to measure other conditions such as wind speed or direction, temperature or elevation.

“We have seen progressive developments in technologies available to golfers who seek to improve their playing performance and enjoyment that also maintain the essential elements of the game,” said Thomas J. O’Toole Jr., USGA vice president and chairman of the Championship Committee. “It is in this spirit that we are allowing the use of distance-measuring devices in our amateur competitions.”

The decision to allow the use of distance-measuring devices follows a recent study of such technologies during the 2013 USGA Women’s State Team and U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur championships as part of the Association’s broad initiative to identify the causes and solutions to slow play in the game. From the data collected at these championships, USGA researchers found no evidence that DMDs had a negative impact on pace of play and will continue to monitor the use of DMDs in the larger pool of amateur events to further study their effect on pace of play.

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

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Just What I Need: Another Incentive To Play More Golf

Golfers have a new reason to play more rounds and brag about it. It's GolfRz, a mobile app to help you earn credits towards vacation packages, cruises, gift cards, a dozen golf balls and free rounds as you accrue points from frequent play at courses in the U.S. and share information via social media.  GolfRz launched in January as a free download available from the iOS App Store and from Google Play for Android devices.

“Today, consumers are accustomed to earning points or rewards for travel, shopping, dining out and all manner of loyalty programs," said Dustin Hemesath, GolfRz creator and founder of parent company Golf Challenges LLC. "We decided that golfers should be able to take advantage of playing frequent rounds at their home or different courses and by doing so earn redeemable credits.  GolfRz puts a unique twist on most loyalty programs as it’s designed to reward users not for actual dollars spent on playing but for the activities golfers do while they’re on the course.  Our goal is to drive more traffic to golf courses by providing a fun, social and rewarding platform for golfers to share their golf experiences.”

According to the company, when you tee it up at five, ten, or 25 different courses, point totals quickly increase.  Credits also accrue for simply checking in at a course, inviting friends to join GolfRz, and sharing one of the many GolfRz deals on social media and more. “As GolfRz attracts users online, we will add more rewards and attractive deals, including VIP passes to golf tournaments and events,” confirms Hemesath, who expects GolfRz to quickly become a very popular golf app.

Hey, it's free and you get free golf stuff for playing more golf! What's not to like?

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

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Mark Your Calendar for the Journal News Golf Show

Put March 8 and 9 on your calendar right now! Those are the dates for the 10th annual Journal News Golf Show at the Westchester County Center in White Plains. You can kick off your season by visiting nearly 75 exhibitors including golf retailers, golf manufacturers, golf travel, instruction, and more. It's also a great place to re-connect with your friends int he golf business who have been hibernating through the winter.

Try out the latest equipment, check out fabulous golf courses and resorts, even get a free lesson from a PGA pro! There are also dozens of demonstrations, workshops, and discussions about everything from the latest technology to the newest rules of the game....all presented by experts from the Metropolitan Golf Association, Metropolitan PGA, and others. There's also a special women's learning area sponsored by the Executive Women's Golf Association.

You won't want to miss the hourly giveaways, either, as well as discounts and free samples from the many vendors present. You'll find a discount pro shop, too, where you can stock up and save before the season starts.  Among the biggest draws each year is the driving range, where you can try out the latest equipment from all the major manufacturers. You'll not only get a chance to swing away with the most up-to-date clubs, but company reps will be there to answer questions and give you guidance, too.

I make the Journal News Golf Show one of my first stops of the golf season...see you there!

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