November 2007

  • November 3, 2007
  • Written by Don Campbell

Most recently I attended the Saskatchewan Golf Association’s Annual Meeting and Banquet. This was a well organized meeting, the highlight for me was being presented with a cheque for $1500.00 that goes toward turfgrass research. This will go to the Prairie Turfgrass Research Centre along with the S.T.A.’s contribution.

The S.T.A. Fall Wind-up and Annual General Meeting at the Dakota Dunes Casino is fast approaching. November 27th it the big day and I would be remiss if I didn’t urge you to attend. In arranging the event, I had a tour of a first class facility, one that rivals some of the casinos in Nevada. The people are very friendly and helpful. This event will be most enjoyable for you so plan on being here.

Most of the golf courses in the province are put to bed for the winter. Courses in the Saskatoon area have their green covers on with a layer of flax straw on top. As has been the case all year, almost all courses are short staffed. This issue will continue to be a problem into 2008 as well.

A recent study found the average golfer walks about 900 miles a year. Another study found golfers drink an average of 22 gallons of beer a year. All this means, on average, that golfers get about 41 miles to the gallon of beer. Kind of makes all golfers proud … especially those that walk!

This winter many golf clubs will ponder and discuss changes to their golf course. It would be worth your while to call on someone who is familiar with golf course renovations. This will save time and money. If you think you can do it yourself cheaper, you’re not going to get the job done and are better off leaving everything alone. Getting good or low-handicap golfers to design renovations will be the biggest mistake you’ll make. While these people mean well they haven’t the proper experience to do the job right.

Next year’s S.T.A. Research Tournament will be held at Jackfish Lodge Golf Club in Cochin, Sask. It will be Tuesday, August 12th – start time is 11:00 am. There will be a skins game the evening before with Laurie Unruh doing the organizing. We are going to put on a good show with the help of Kyle Kellgren.

The first reel-type mower was invented in 1832. First used to trim carpets in woolen mills in Britain, the mower was quickly adapted to cutting grass on the estates of the wealthy and on golf courses, where the wealthy played. Greens were expanded from just a few square yards around a rabbit hole that served as a cup to much larger areas where putting skills determined winners and losers. At the same time, the small pedestrian mower was modified into a larger unit that was horse drawn and used to clip the fairways.

How many people perform this task? The engine oil in your equipment should be changed before it is stored for the winter. The reason for this is when an engine is running, part of the combustion process converts fuel into water, which eventually seeps into the oil. You certainly don’t want condensation and moisture in the engine if it’s in storage. This only promotes rust!

t’s an emotional issue when trees are removed from a golf course, park or town. Opponents may find tree removal more acceptable if new trees are planted in other areas or close to the areas removed. Above all, avoid the word “removal”. Every facility should have a tree management program – not a tree removal program.

I just got a phone call from Dakota Dunes Casino about our start time. It is 9:00 am which means registration starts then. The Casino doesn’t open until 9:00 am. By the way, the highway from Saskatoon to the casino is almost finished so it will be an easy drive.

The A.G.M. will feature the Association
’s financial report as well as the election of officers. Odd numbered zones are up for election:

  • Zone 1: Gord Moore
  • Zone 2: Pierre Vezeau
  • Zone 3: Doug Leavins
  • Zone 7: Lance Gay
  • Commercial South Director: Laurie Unruh

All will be elected for a 2-year term.

In the early days it was common for a greenkeeper to push a wheelbarrow loaded with tools and topsoil over the golf course. When the crew increased in size, supervision became paramount and it was not uncommon for the greenkeeper to ride a horse across the links. Next came bicycles on flat courses and motorcycles on hilly terrain. After World War II, Jeeps were used, followed by utility vehicles and golf cars.

Many years ago a shepherd propelled a pebble with his crook to guide a wayward sheep back to the flock. He experienced the addictive thrill of what would come to be known as a golf stroke. The crook eventually evolved into a big “Bertha” and the pebble gave way to a dimpled sphere of great ingenuity. Ron Dagert told me that one.

As I said earlier, I made a trip to Dakota Dunes Casino to organize our Fall Wind-Up and A.G.M. After our meeting I ventured into the Casino to try my luck at the machines. After about 40 minutes I was up just over twenty-five bucks. I decided that was enough and left. On the way home I thought I should of stayed to win $50.00 and would attend the Fall Wind-Up free. Bring a little extra cash and win some “ging gang”. It will be a perfect day.

Speaking of Research Tournaments, our 2007 event held in Melville was a great success. We made just over $1,500.00 for Turf Research. We thank the Melville Golf Club and the participants for this. We also thank those Commercial friends who contributed dollars to Turf Research and to the numerous golf clubs who sent in entry fees even though they didn’t have any participants at the event. We appreciate you efforts!

Here are some important facts for you:
A human body is about 65% water. Also, the average person will consume more than 40,000 litres (10,600 gallons) of water by the time they reach 50. Further, the average person in North America uses about 380 litres (100 gallons) of water each day for activities such as bathing, cleaning, cooking, drinking and that all important and certainly necessary exercise called “flushing”.

A number of you will be attending seminars this winter. Here are some tips to get the most from your educational sessions:

  • Listen attentively and take brief but accurate notes.
  • Share your relevant experience with friends.
  • Ask questions if you don’t understand. The only bad question is the one not asked.
  • Give and receive feedback, when requested, in a positive and constructive manner.
  • Be considerate regarding the needs and opinions of others.
  • Enter discussions with enthusiasm. You will gain from the program only as much as you put into it.

Everything is ready for the Fall Wind-up and Annual General Meeting at Dakota Dunes Casino. All we need is your attendance and participation. Lets have a fun day. Let me know if you are coming. You can pay me at the registration desk. I have to know the numbers for lunch and, more importantly, the banquet. See you November 27th at 9:00 am!

More in this category: « October 2007 December 2007 »

About Don Campbell

Don CampbellG. N. Don Campbell,
1933 –2016

S.T.A. Executive Director, 'Turf Tips' writer and editor of our 'TURFTALK' newsletter, Don Campbell has been an asset to our industry for decades!
A member in the turfgrass community for more than 57 years, Don started his career at Riverside Country Club in Saskatoon as a caddy, eventually becoming the course Superintendent. He finished his career as the General Manager at the very same course.

In 2004, Don was awarded the CGSA John B. Steel Distinguished Service Award, recognizing his lifetime commitment to turf care.
Don is survived by his wife Marie have three children: Sherril, Glen and Doug. 

About the STA

  • Saskatchewan's Turfgrass Association, founded in 1979, is a non-profit organization. The S.T.A. was organized by a group of Turfgrass Professionals which has grown to include people from Parks, Golf Courses, Sod Growers, Cities and Commercial Companies.