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Scott Powers: The Big Smoke*

Scott Powers: The Big Smoke*

Hello all, As many of you already know I am interning at the Royal Automobile Club in England and will be doing some blogging for TurfNet while I'm here. I have recently graduated from the University of Guelph and decided to shake things up by moving across the pond.  The 18th at the Royal Automobile Club. The Royal Automobile Club is situated just south of London in a little town called Epsom. Being home to just over 30,000 residents, the town has the perfect balance
Our Top 13 Favorite Film Quotes Heard On The Course

Our Top 13 Favorite Film Quotes Heard On The Course

During daily golf operations at Rockbottum CC, film quotes often slip into conversations with golfers, management and the crew.  It's like some odd form of verbal shorthand that delivers a message in the most minimal form. There are probably hundreds of these and we deeply regret that we had to leave out some great quotes, like "That's my stapler" and "I'm gonna have to go ahead and ask you to work this weekend" . . . but it's June and we have to keep these films short, because you have oth
Parker Stancil:  Another for the list... The Amateur Championship!

Parker Stancil: Another for the list... The Amateur Championship!

I have previously volunteered at TPC Sawgrass, Sea Island, East Lake GC, Gullane GC, and more, but this was my first time being a member of the greenkeeping team to actually be the host of a big tournament. I’ve had great fun with all the high-energy events, but by contrast the Amateur Championship here at Portmarnock Golf Club was a very nice and relaxed week. Horseplaying around last year with Ralph Kepple, East Lake GC Director of Agronomy. He was helping me with the Tour Cha
Cell Phone Policy . . . revisited

Cell Phone Policy . . . revisited

A few years back, we examined the pros and cons of crew phone use.  Since things continue to change--with phones now serving as cameras, music players and surveillance devices--we thought you might want to revisit Momma's solution for irresponsible phone use.  But be careful . . . I had an entire high school football team threaten to quit if they couldn't have a "phone break" during practice. Yeah, I know . . . get off my lawn.  
The Death of a Salesman?

The Death of a Salesman?

Back to the inbox, as it is the sluice box that keeps on giving little nuggets. This one from the commercial world.  "I'm really confused about this whole selling thing. I figured as an ex-superintendent, I would be treated fairly or at least with some respect. It's got me down and I just don't know what to do. Can you give me any advice" I was fortunate enough to spend 7 years with Sierra Pacific Turf Supply as their Director of Agronomy and handling a sales territory as well. And of
Ireland calling! Will you answer this time?

Ireland calling! Will you answer this time?

Welcome to the opening post for our 2019 TurfNet Members Trip to Ireland blog. Below you will find the details of the trip along with an explanatory webinar video (below) and a trip brochure. We hope this is the year that you will join us! Departure: Leave US Friday October 4th for Shannon in the Southwest of Ireland. Flights arrive Saturday morning June 5th.  Note: on this date there are primarily three flights from the East Coast to Shannon: AerLingus from New York/JFK and Boston, and Uni

Jon Kiger

Jon Kiger

Parker Stancil: British Amateur Championship Prep

Parker Stancil: British Amateur Championship Prep

Preparation for the Amateur Championship began many weeks in advance of tournament week for Portmarnock Golf Club’s greenkeepers. I was fortunate enough to join the team a little over two weeks before the first practice rounds were starting, and we’ve been putting in some hard work. One day’s worth of walkmowing… I’m whooped.   Make sure to wear some sunglasses if you check out the gorgeous par 3, hole 12… you might go blind with all those lasers I laid dow
Reinventing myself for a life-long dream...

Reinventing myself for a life-long dream...

I am a non-traditional student at Ohio St. University-ATI in Wooster, Ohio. This year, at age 59, I decided to take some time and reinvent myself with a life-long dream of sports turf management. I am originally from Texas where I was a science teacher and football coach. After that, I spent time in Kansas as an assistant principal/athletic director. I moved to Ohio when my wife was hired by OSU.  Since then, I have become interested in all facets of the turfgrass industry. From May 1 throu
Did The Golf Cart Create The Modern Cupcake Golfer?

Did The Golf Cart Create The Modern Cupcake Golfer?

Purely apocryphal, but my Bio-RAM can recall a time when golfers weren't so picky and whiny and demanding about things that didn't matter in real life.   Although I have previously fixed the blame on color TV and 50 weekends a year of Las Vegas Showgirl grooming standards, I think I might have isolated the true cause:  The introduction of the portable sofa to what was once a rugged adventure sport. If I rewind back about 50 years, to a time when it was more about playing the game than the c
From The Vault:  The 2nd Film From Rockbottum CC

From The Vault: The 2nd Film From Rockbottum CC

For your entertainment, we present, from deep in the bowels of the Rockbottum Films vault, our second major production:  "Customer Service". The audio in this historic film is clippy at times, even glitchy, (it was pre-Sennheiser) but we didn't think you would mind.  After all, where else can you watch a GCS push a mean old lady golfer into a deep bunker?   You know you've been tempted to do the same thing.  
Back at it: Grinding for more credibility

Back at it: Grinding for more credibility

I recently graduated from Horry Georgetown Technical College in Myrtle Beach with an Associates Degree in Golf and Sports Turf Management. I decided I wanted to keep grinding for more credibility, therefore, I will be attending Clemson University to advance my education by majoring in AgMechanization and AgriBusiness.  Me and two of the greatest mentors I could ask for: Charles Granger (left) & Ashley Wilkinson (right)  My original plans for this summer included knocki
When The Critics Won't Quit

When The Critics Won't Quit

Let's go back to my inbox for this post... "I need your help. As you know, it's been a cold, damp spring. The golf course wasn't great for Memorial Day. And as I write this on July 4th, it's just barely starting to come around. The comments I am getting from golfers are really bad. "When are you going to fix this place", is the tone of their gripes. I've talked to everyone, blogged about it, written about it and I'm still getting hammered. Any tips?" This has been more common in the sp
For 2019, Greenkeepers Three!

For 2019, Greenkeepers Three!

Our Greenkeeping, The Next Generation student-authored blog debuted in 2012 as a way for our first intern to share his new experiences on and off the course while spending a summer in Ireland. It has been written by a variety of students from many different schools and regions of the country. The blog has also sparked increased interest in spending the summer overseas working in turf as the access to courses willing to host turf students has increased. It is in this environment that we are

Jon Kiger

Jon Kiger

Fred & The Anti-Stress

Fred & The Anti-Stress

It’s June.  Most of the tv addled golfers have forgotten April, thanks to a severely damaged attention span, one of the gifts of the modern technocracy.  But the stress merely continues to build through June and then the heat of July.  Some areas will suffer from freight-train rain, while others endure a seemingly endless hot, dry bubble of desert air.   Add in a few members just back from a member-guest with all sorts of ideas they picked up in an entirely different budget climate--or my favori
Put a Little Love in It...

Put a Little Love in It...

I love my job. I don’t love it the way I love my wife and kids, or even my dog, nor do I love it all the time, but on a whole, I love it. Being able to say this puts me in a significant minority in the workplace. A 2017 Gallup poll found that 70% of workers in the U.S. hate their job (hate may have a spectrum of intensity, but I am splitting hairs). There are many strategies we all know to combat job-hate, and any job-hating individual must shoulder some responsibility, yet job-hate continues. L
Turf Health Is Secondary To Your Health

Turf Health Is Secondary To Your Health

Working for a big urban muni in the Deep South with monthly floods and a constantly changing command structure had a negative effect on my health.  While the chain of command at a high dollar private course can often be a pressurized environment, the sudden and bizarre reversals of policy on the municipal facility I inhabited regularly produced staff meetings worthy of a Polanski film.  At one point, I was stripped of my authority to issue cart path only edicts, as that power belonged in th
Dear Writer, You Can Write!

Dear Writer, You Can Write!

Some great questions flow through my various inboxes and DM's. I'd like to share a recent one that was really from the heart. "I just had my Annual Review with my GM. And his biggest issue with me is communication. Especially my written communications. I feel judged harshly. I have never been a very good writer. Can you give my any tips to help? It's sad that the golf course is good, but he has this problem with me." My Answer: This is SO COMMON. It really is.  Relax. I'm going to
Hero’s Journey...

Hero’s Journey...

Like many of you I sat transfixed as Tiger Woods made his way to his unprecedented fifth Masters title. It was hard not to be swept away by the culmination of this archetypal hero’s journey and cheer him down the 18th fairway. It was great to see him don the green jacket once more, but more importantly it was really nice to see him happy. It wasn’t until after a recent conversation with my dear friend (a former Assistant Superintendent of mine) Robert McGregor a few days later, that the arc
A Career Told Through Mowing...

A Career Told Through Mowing...

If any TurfNet reader were asked what is the most important aspect of your job, I imagine there would be a wide variety of responses. This variety would stand to reason because although TurfNet followers gravitate towards Golf Course Management, they actually represent a variety of green industry segments. I am a Groundskeeper for a university which is different than a golf course superintendent, which is different again from a landscape contractor (I won’t even get into irrigation people who ar
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