For more than 30 years, David Fruchte has been superintendent at Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club in Southern Pines, North Carolina, the site of this year's U.S. Women's Open, which once was owned by LPGA legend Peggy Kirk Bell. A graduate of the turfgrass program at Purdue, Fruchte learned the trade from the legendary David Stone at the Honors Course in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Since 1990, Pine Needles has become the epitome of resort golf in the highly competitive North Carolina Sandhills region.
In this episode of All Stars of Turf, Fruchte discusses what it takes to enjoy such a lengthy career at the same property that included being the four-time host superintendent of the U.S. Women's Open, including this year's event. Fruchte also talks about what it was like working for Bell, an LPGA legend and pioneer in instruction and introducing the game to thousands of women.
Fruchte also opens up about the challenges of post-pandemic golf that includes record rates of play and historic labor challenges.