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About this blog

2018 TurfNet/TOCA Intern Abroad, working at Great Northern, Kerteminde, Denmark

Entries in this blog

Relationships at work: More important than many realize

Relationships at work: More important than many realize

In May of 2018, I promised myself that once I started my new, but temporary, life in Denmark, I’d be as good of a friend as I could be to anyone I would meet.  I had no enemies when I started, and I saw no reason to have any by the end of my summer. I lived in the Great Northern greenkeeper employee housing with 14 other greenkeepers. The crew was diverse, from all over:  Ireland, England, Scotland, Lithuania, Australia, Denmark, Poland, Latvia, Jamaica, and Bulgaria. I’m proud to

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Before closing out the summer... Copenhagen!

Before closing out the summer... Copenhagen!

Before my time at Great Northern ran too short, I decided to take a little day trip to Copenhagen City, the capital of Denmark. I dragged my buddy, Jack Darling, to Copenhagen so he could see the city as well… and he had a car, so I saved money by not buying a train ticket! To get to Copenhagen, we had to cross the Storebælt Bridge, also known as the Great Belt Fixed Link Bridge. This 6,790-meter-long bridge connects the two islands Zealand and Funen (the island Great Northern is on). It op

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Next-Gen Range Maintenance

Next-Gen Range Maintenance

It’s safe to say that majority of golf courses around the world have a driving range on property, and this is responsibility for the greenkeeping staff and proshop staff to maintain. It’s very common for the clubhouse/proshop workers to collect the range balls to be reused and allow the greenkeepers to maintain the turf on the range. Here at Great Northern Golf Club, we have a high-tech GPS-based robotic system that can do both! I met up with our club Head Pro, Søren Hansen, to take a

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

European Cuisine

European Cuisine

First things first. I am an awful cook. I belong on the opposite side of Gordon Ramsey and Paula Deen on the spectrum of the culinary arts.  Upon leaving the U.S.A., I realized that my easy days of running to a McDonalds or Chick Fil A for a meal were coming to an end. Within the first couple of weeks, I struggled to feed myself, because I never learned how to cook. I had gotten so spoiled with fast-food and my parents feeding me. I’m embarrassed to say, I may have only used a stove to

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Irrigation Irritation!

Irrigation Irritation!

I don’t mean to imply that I dislike irrigation by titling this blog “Irrigation Irritation.” In fact, I love irrigation. I was introduced to the turf industry at the age of 16 when I helped install an HDPE system at Mountain Lake Country Club in Lake Wales, Florida.  16 year old Parker getting after it on the skidsteer! Here’s me plowing some 6-inch mainline back in 2015. Here at Great Northern, we have a Rain Bird HDPE system. The entire system is high-

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Scottish Open: Experience of a lifetime

Scottish Open: Experience of a lifetime

I had worked six professional tournaments before adding the recent Scottish Open as number 7. Of them, the Scottish is definitely at the top of my list.  The event was held at Gullane (pronounced Gull'-in) Golf Club on the southern shore of the Firth of Forth in East Lothian, on the east coast of Scotland.  Planted right along the North Sea, the golf course sat upon cliffs overhanging beautiful native landscapes and rocky shores. Gullane Golf Club is home to great links golf, great people,

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Side trip to St. Andrews before the Scottish Open

Side trip to St. Andrews before the Scottish Open

A little golf trip never hurt anyone. Since my TurfNet internship this summer includes an opportunity to volunteer at the Scottish Open at Gullane Golf Club, my parents decided to fly  to Scotland to visit me, have a short vacation and enjoy a little golf as well. They met me in St. Andrews the weekend before the Open. I arrived in St. Andrews on Friday night and got a chance to play the Old Course on Saturday morning, before my parents' arrival. This was made possible by Gordon Moir,

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Aidan O'Hara: World Cup Experience

Aidan O'Hara: World Cup Experience

The World Cup is one of the biggest sporting events there is. Whether you're a European "football" fan or an American "soccer" fan, chances are that you're looking forward to The World Cup... one of the most watched events worldwide.  My mentor/superintendent this summer, Aidan O'Hara, supervised the construction and renovation of football pitches that were done for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in Johannesburg and Pretoria, South Africa. There was a panic with 22 Team Base Camps (fo

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

"The American" tackles the Spray Bug

"The American" tackles the Spray Bug

Pesticide, fertility and chemical applications on golf course putting surfaces are easily one of the most important tasks performed in golf course maintenance. Precision, attention to detail, and alertness are extremely critical for these applications. Here at Great Northern we use two Hahn Spray Bugs for applications to our greens.   The Hahn Spray Bug is an electric-powered sprayhawk produced by Hahn Application Products, LLC in Evansville, Indiana. The sprayer has a 15 gallon tank,

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Microbes an alternative to (scarce) traditional fungicides in Denmark

Microbes an alternative to (scarce) traditional fungicides in Denmark

By using alternative products and management strategies, a great turf manager can find ways to manage world-class turfgrass with minimal crop protectants... like the broad selection that is accessible in America.   Here at Great Northern, head greenkeeper Aidan O'Hara uses beneficial microorganisms in his preventative fungicide plan. Microbes and soil pH are two of Aidan's many strategies for managing turf diseases.   Only three fungicides are legal to use in Denmark as of Ju

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

A walking tour of Kerteminde...

A walking tour of Kerteminde...

Hi everyone! I'm Parker and I'll be your tour guide for today. Today we're taking a little trip to downtown Kerteminde, a normally quiet little town on the island of Funen in southern Denmark. It's my home for the summer. View of Kerteminde from the north beach. During the summer months, Kerteminde attracts lots of visitors. The town has a beautiful harbor, clear water beaches, great local restaurants and various events for everyone to enjoy. I took a quick trip into

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Getting acquainted and comfortable... no problem!

Getting acquainted and comfortable... no problem!

Settling into a different country has been pretty easy for me. Thanks to my new friends who live at the employee housing and in various flats nearby, I've had a great deal of fun. The Greenkeeper house, my home away from home. Our greenkeeping crew has guys from many different countries, including Lithuania, Latvia, Scotland, Ireland, England, Denmark, Australia, Poland, and more. Many of these international employees have worked in several different countries such as Sweden or t

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Busy, busy with aeration, applications and topdressing

Busy, busy with aeration, applications and topdressing

This past week at Great Northern, the talk was all about the aerification and topdressing we've been doing. After a long couple of days of hollow-tining greens, the crew worked really hard all day and got a few essential things done for post-aerification. A few of the guys were sent out to push-spread Greenmaster Pro Lite 14-5-10 fertilizer with some magnesium. Magnesium is just as essential as nitrogen for turfgrass to produce the chlorophyll molecule. John Cunningham, from Irel

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Time to start!

Time to start!

My official first day of work at Great Northern was Tuesday, May 15th. The first few days that I was in Denmark prior to that got a little boring, considering I had no way of getting around town except walking, and I was eager to get to work. The solution for me was to help out over the weekend before my official start date, so I jumped in with the aerification crew late one evening. I shoveled the cores until 9:00 that night, which isn't as bad as it sounds because the sun sets at 9:30!

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

The City That Never Sleeps

The City That Never Sleeps

To work in Denmark, anyone from another country needs either a work visa or a residence/work permit. As I will be spending only three months overseas, I only need a temporary residence permit. For Americans, these are available only in major cities. Living in South Carolina, my best option for the mandatory visa appointment was the VFS Global office in New York City. VFS Global is worldwide company that does outsourcing and technology services for governments and diplomatic missions. I

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil

Southern boy off to Denmark!

Southern boy off to Denmark!

Welcome to the life of Parker Stancil! I am a 19-year-old turf student at Horry Georgetown Technical College in Myrtle Beach, SC. With the exception of living in Florida for one summer, South Carolina has been home to me for my entire life. I'm very proud to be southern, but this summer I'm going Danish! I am no stranger to golf course maintenance. Since the age of 16, I have volunteered at six professional golf tournaments and I've worked on four golf courses prior to this summer's TurfNet

Parker Stancil

Parker Stancil


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