| Jul 17, 2019
With July comes heat. After a cool and late spring, it's a rough mix. That aside, the event calendar is full at your club. Patrons expect exceptional conditions and it's your goal to provide the best golf course possible.
This week, I spoke with Steve Wilson, the superintendent at Milburn Country Club in the Kansas City metro. The facility is hosting the Kansas State Am. The event is a practice round Monday, 36-holes of stroke play Tuesday and Wednesday, then match play for the top 64 who advance through stroke play qualifying through Sunday. A full 7-day event.
Many of us are aware of the preparations needed for a big event, such as your member/guest, LPGA or PGA Tour events, and, of course, a major. In many cases, facilities take in volunteers from the region to assist. There are morning and afternoon shifts to make sure the golf course is in top notch shape.
Well, for a state amateur there are no additional volunteers. 132 players for three days, then four more days of match play. That can take a toll.
Wilson is using a crew of 18 people and running three shifts to cover the event. One crew will work their early, regular shift, then two more rotations will go. It's a lot of hours. Wilson is also on the golf course. Whether it's mowing fairways or hand-watering greens, he's right there.
What has made it more challenging is the difficult winter. Nearly 4 acres of Zoysia sod was laid on fairways at Milburn this spring. No matter, Steve is in good spirits and as we discussed, "the days are getting shorter." And, despite all the challenges, the course is playing great.
Oh, did I mention there's an excessive heat warning in the area until Sunday? Just another summer in the Central Plains!