I wanted to start Grand Strand /Area VII report with a CONGRATULATIONS going out to TPC Myrtle Beach for being named Myrtle Beach Area Golf Course Owners Association “Golf Course of the Year”. Director of Operations, Matt Daly, PGA, Head Golf Professional, Kevin Williamson, PGA, and Golf Course Superintendent, Clay Dubose, GCSAA, deserve most of the credit for receiving this award. The MBAGCOA evaluates course of the year nominees on four criteria: quality of the golf course, quality of the ownership and management, contribution to the community, and contribution to the game. They are now eligible for the state and national Golf Course Owners Association awards. Good Luck TPC.
Rounds of Golf and Weather: Resort, Public and Private Course rounds were up industry wide in Area VII for late spring and summer of 2019. Weather has been pretty good with less rainfall and very hot temps.
Course Conditions: Most courses on the Grand Strand are reporting great conditions now. Of the courses that are reporting, not only great conditions, but the transition back to the summer Bermuda grass was as good as we have experienced in the last several years. A number of courses have just finished up with greens aerification for 2019, and are recovering nicely. Of the courses that did some refurbishing of greens surfaces and bunker renovations, Myrtlewood Pines course will re-open in September after replacing greens along with Shaftsbury Glen. Both courses have chosen the Sunday Ultradwarf grass for their greens. Possum Trot Golf Club is said to be closing on September 30, after their lease expires on the property.
Membership Numbers: Of the private courses that I spoke with, there are mixed numbers. Several have continued to grow their memberships, although a couple have said their numbers are flat and no growth.
Tournament Activities: There are a number of tournaments played and are coming up on the calendar:
- TPC Myrtle Beach hosted a very successful NCAA East Regional May 12-15
- Grande Dunes Resort hosted the CPGA South Carolina Open July 8-11. Two local Grand Strand residents faired very well in this event with Derek Watson, PGA, winning the event and Samantha Smith, PGA, finishing tied for second
- The Grand Strand Area also had the North Carolina Open Champion, with Ryan Tyndall, PGA, coming out on top of that event.
- The Legends Resort, headed up by Matt Biddington, PGA, and Billy Rowehl, PGA hosted the DRIVE, CHIP and PUTT local qualifier on July 9.
- World Am Championship will begin August 26-31 at many of the Area VII golf courses. Entries in the World Am are strong.
- Founders Group International hosted the Retired Military Classic, at 6 of its courses this summer.
- East Coast Golf Management, again hosted the National Father Son Classic at several their courses.
Education: Save the Date!! Our Grand Strand /Area VII Meeting will be held on November 18. Please stay tuned for more information regarding this meeting.
If I can help anyone in anyway, please do not hesitate to contact me.