Wednesday, July 3, 2019

The Bogey score

Ever since we restored the original teeing grounds on holes 6 and 18, we've used some simple signs to help players know which set of tees are being used for that days play.  This spring I put out some new signs (the old signs were awkward to move around) and enough of you have commented on them that I figure it's time for an explanation as to what's written on them.  For example the sign on 6 says that it is a bogey 3, but people keep asking me why it isn't a bogey 4 since the hole is a par 3.  To answer this question we have to review the definition of the terms par and bogey.
First of all "par" is the score that a scratch golfer should make, and for the most part the par of a hole is based on it's effective length.  Today, bogey is considered one over par, but back in the day when Tacoma C&GC was founded, and golf in America was in its infancy, the bogey score was what a good player should make based on the collective agreement of the committee.  The length of a hole certainly had an influence on this decision but mostly it was based on the overall difficulty of the hole.  In other words, hazards like bunkers, water, wind, elevation and the like were considered when the bogey score was calculated.  Check out our scorecard from 1925, you can see that each hole had a par and a bogey score.  The par for the course was 72 and the bogey score for the course was 81.    
To make things more interesting, the bogey score was considered that which was played by a fictitious person named colonel bogey or the bogey man.  It was commonly said that you beat the colonel, or the bogey man if you bested the bogey score.  Since the "good old days" golf course rating with the addition of slope-rating has become a very standardized measure of a golf course's difficulty, and the bogey score as originally intended has mostly become nonexistent. Ironically, the bogey score as originally intended is a much better target score for most of us.  I mean seriously, most of us will never beat par.  If we go out there with the goal to beat par, we will spend much of our golfing days feeling very defeated.  That's why I'm putting the bogey score on the course signage.  We all have different abilities but we all want to have fun. Getting beat up by chasing par is not near as fun as beating up on the Colonel.  If you want to read some more about the history of par and bogey click HERE, or click HERE

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Green Expansion Update 5-18-19

Remember when we had the back of #5 green all torn up?  Well, we're ready to start playing this new area.  Here's what the back of #5 looks like today.
The following video will give you an update on all of the greens that we modified this past off season.  Of course I can talk a lot about this stuff so the video runs 20 minutes.  Enjoy!

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Pinke's Planting

The trees just south of the 11th tee have been down for a couple of months now and the positive results of this project have become increasingly obvious.  Below is a picture taken from the 11th tee before the removal of the trees and then the next picture was taken just the other day.

Maybe even more impressive is the view from the south looking back toward the tee.  Here's a before and after picture from that viewpoint.  In these pictures you can really appreciate the size of the trees.

Now of course the benefits of this project are numerous.  For one thing nobody is ever going to have to clean up after those trees.  Falling debris is a year around occurrence with trees that size.  Secondly, the freshly paved road (which is coming very soon) will enjoy decades of strength and smoothness since it wont be compromised by roots heaving up or falling branches.  Thirdly, some very nice native oak trees were released by this project giving them a second chance to live a full life.  I guess you could say a lot of grass plants were also released by this project since there's no question the surrounding turf will greatly benefit from the increase in sunlight.  We must mention the issue of safety.  This project has now given everyone the opportunity to hit their desired shot shape from the tee.  That means it's a lot safer for those people on 16 green since far fewer errant tee shots will be in that vicinity.  Lastly, and most likely the best benefit of this project is simply better golf.  As I just mentioned now you can hit a fade or a draw from the tee which means you have a choice.  Whenever you stand on a tee and have choices or decisions to make, the tee shot all of the sudden is more interesting and that is just simply better golf.  Now I have to give credit where credit is due and Jeremy Pinke (our horticulturist) is certainly due credit and praise for his work on the planting which replaced those trees.
You can see that the planting effectively buffers the roadway and the new trees are a variety that will max out at a height of 30' so they will never cause problems similar to those we experienced from the big firs (i.e. shade, bad golf, road up-heaving).  This planting was quite a project in of itself.  First of all, the plants were donated by some neighbors with the stipulation that we cover the cost of removal and replacement.  The plants had outgrown their space.  Here's what they looked like before transplanting.
After most of my staff teamed up and hand dug around each of these plants, Jeremy then used a machine to load them onto our trailer. 
The large plants then had to be off loaded at the golf course, and then transported to the planting area on 11 tee.
The whole process took several days, and ironically it all came together on a couple snowy days in early March. I honestly had fears that this project would start at the same time the grass would start growing.  No one could have predicted that the course would be covered in snow on March 5th.  The timing just couldn't have been better and it was fun watching the crew work together to get this project done.  I provided the tools, but it was all coordinated by Jeremy and as always he never disappoints.  The planting looks really good, but you should know we're going to add several more plants to increase the overall density.  When you see Jeremy, give him an attaboy.  This was a tough project and he's pretty proud of how it's turned out so far.