2019 ECGJ: Playing the Historic Binghamton Country Club, an A.W. Tillinghast Gem!!!

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Fun, Fun, Fun at BCC!

What a treat, what fun to play. Binghamton Country Club today! Especially with my two good Hobart & William Smith College friends Professor Chip who teaches a golf architecture course and Ken the Statesmen Golf Coach!

The golf course is in incredible shape benefiting from recently completed tree removal and bunker restoration programs! The course conditions have historically been impeccable and they were no different today! The greens, the course’s main defense, along with the engaging high shot value A.W. Tillinghast design, were rolling at an 11.3 on the Stimpmeter today!

The long & difficult par-3 18th home hole at BCC!

The long & difficult par-3 18th home hole at BCC!

Binghamton Country Club is the bedrock, the history, the origin of golf in the Greater Binghamton area and all of Broome County and somewhat beyond! The club dates bank to 1889 with the first course on the flat lands near the Susquehanna River. The famous and tremendously skilled golf course architect A.W. Tillinghast designed the current golf course and it opened in 1921.

 

George F. Johnson in line with his workers ringing out on the Time Recording Clock Machine!

George F. Johnson in line with his workers ringing out on the Time Recording Clock Machine! (Picture Credit: Bundy Museum)

George F. Johnson was a charter resident member of BCC and such a big proponent of golf he built his Endicott-Johnson shoe workers a golf course of their own. Originally called the En-Joie Health Golf Club, the workers’ golf course opened in 1927. George F. influenced Thomas J. Watson not only in business but also in golf. Watson, who also became a BCC member was the man who built International Business Machines (IBM). He also built a golf course for his workers; the IBM Country Club which opened in 1938. The En-Joie Golf Club has brought the world of professional golf to the Triple Cities (Endicott, Johnson City, and Binghamton) since 1971 (Credit source of this information to BCC Club Historian Louis R. Panigrosso, Esq. and his 3-part series ‘E-J, Big Blue, & BCC.’)

Binghamton University Campus from the 15th green at BCC.

Binghamton University Campus from the 15th green at BCC.

With views across the Susquehanna Valley to Vestal in the South direction one can easily see the Binghamton University campus from the 15th green near the clubhouse. There are even better views from the 17th green all the way east up the Susquehanna River to Downtown Binghamton and my beloved Ely Park Golf Course on the western slope of Mount Prospect!

Great golf history, hometown views, and great camaraderie made for an exception day! While my buddies had to head north and home to Geneva after lunch in the grill room I ventured back out on the golf course for a second 18 holes! I had to make up for the round lost after being cut after two rounds in the TCGA Amateur Championship Keith Chesk! For those of you who know me and the TROML/SSS process I am always joyous and rejoicing so why not play and replay this beauty?

View from the 6th green at BCC!

View from the 6th green at BCC!

A Heartfelt Thank You to Hobart and William Smith Colleges

http://www.andygolftraveldiary.com/a-heartfelt-thank-you-t…/

Today also brought back memories of being selected as the 2015 John Henry Hobart Fellow in Residence! What a great on-campus experience with the freshman class which just now graduated four years later! Time indeed flies! I hope they learned as much from my share as I learned from them! TROML Baby (an exclamation of Joy and Gratitude!)

(Andy Reistetter; 7/27/19; Facebook Post with 30 Pics)

2019 ECGJ; The 9-Hole Montrose Club in Montrose, PA: Charming, Fun, & Historic!!!

CLICK HERE for an Aerial View of The Montrose Club!

19One-of-a-kind for sure! The Montrose Club a nice 9-holer on the gentle slope overlooking Montrose Lake in Montrose, Pennsylvania! A golf course with charm; divided into three 3-hole sections by Routes 29 & 167. One that I have probably driven by 20 times in my life (20 miles east of Binghamton) and every time I did I said I wish I could stop and play this golf course!

With the "all-too-young-to-be-legendary" Joan E. Davis!

With the “all-too-young-to-be-legendary” Joan E. Davis!

The first hole is literally at the intersection of Lake Avenue and Route 29 but it is not quirky, it is just history, being built in 1898. Reminds me of the Road Hole on the Old Course at St. Andrews! Bit of a Ben Hogan aspect too… aim at the Hollywood sign… which letter said Hogan? Same for the approach shot on No. 9 with the Rite Aid beyond the 9th green! Diaz country smokestack too! Relatively new 2nd hole. Challenging par- 5 3rd hole with necklace bunkers. The red shack on the 5th hole is intriguing… must be a story! Short par-4 6th is drive-able for sure but stay off the road! Beautiful par-3 7th hole on the water. Challenging 8th! You will remember every hole because this is a special golfing experience!

With Keith Chesk (L) and Randy White (R), and proof positive above that they have won The Montrose Club Member-Guest!

With Keith Chesk (L) and Randy White (R), and proof positive above that they have won The Montrose Club Member-Guest!

Definitely a fun club that anyone, including myself, would enjoy being a member. Exciting day praying (Bridgewater Church Montrose) and playing with my friend Joan E.Davis! Thank you to my buddy members Keith Chesk & Randy White for sponsoring us and GM Rebecca Warner for hosting Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary! Pull over, stop, and play this golf course if you ever have the opportunity!

 

30PS- Oh by the way the fun & enjoyment is endless in this part of Pennsylvania! There’s a big chair and a frosty one waiting for you nearby at Endless Brewing! (Andy Reistetter, 7-13-19, Facebook Post with 30 Pics)

2019 ECGJ: Play Tall Pines Players Club in Friendsville, PA; Not Far from Binghamton, NY!

created by dji camera

created by dji camera

CLICK HERE for an aerial view of the beautiful Tall Pines Players Club in Friendsville, PA!

What better to place to play my first round of golf with the too young to be legendary Joan E.Davis than the Augusta-like Tall Pines Players Club just south of the PA border?

A memorable round on a golf course with spectacular character, beauty, and shot values! Can’t believe it has taken us 4 years to tee it up but as fate would have it the wait was well worth it!

With the legendary Joan E. Davis at Tall Pines Players Club!

With the legendary Joan E. Davis at Tall Pines Players Club!

On a windy day, when the clouds were gracefully passing overhead as the bright ground sun waves kept coming down the fairway at us, I watched in awe at the Sorenstam-like swing of the creator of The Golfer’s Buddy- the best lil’ golf carry bags around to enhance your enjoyment of the game of golf and speed up play! And I thought I was everybody’s Golf Buddy!Seriously, check out the link below!

 

 

Tall Pines Freedom Par-Tee 7-6-19Tall Pines Players Club is hosting a BIG golf & entertainment event on Saturday, July 6th; the Freedom Par-Tee featuring a great golfing competition and the UUU band (of DSGO Friday after-party fame & fun).

Don’t miss this one! Friendsville, PA aptly named; a place to visit whether for dinner, a drink, or golf and make friends! For Joan’s close friends Mildred LentineFrank Lentine, & Michael Sedlak, for the record, I did witness a full round of safe golf cart driving by Joan! She had me taking videos and pics just in case the deer ran into her golf cart or one of the trees moved! What a memorable day with Joan E.Davisat Tall Pines Players Club! See you on the 6th of July! YOU, YOU, YOU, too, too, too!!! TROML Baby (an exclamation of JOY)!!!

CLICK here for Joan’s Golf Buddy website!

(Andy Reistetter; 6/15/19; Facebook Post with 30 Pics)

2019 ECGJ: Sea Haven Resort Motel is a Golfer’s Haven in Southampton on Long Island!

CLICK HERE for an Aerial View of  the Sea Haven Resort & the Great Peconic Bay!!

20190520_153409Sea Haven Resort Motel should be renamed Golfer’s Haven Resort Motel! In the heart of America’s Long Island historic links golf courses—National Golf Links–Shinnecock Hills Golf Club—Sebonack Golf Club—all within a few minutes drive!

Looking for a reasonably priced, clean, convenient and good value; Golfer’s Haven, I mean Sea Haven is the place!

Owner/Operator Umar Kahn has big time corporate event experience and only recently purchased the property and is turning the operation around! I can’t wait to come back and see what it looks like in a year or two!

Note the discounted rate code below!

Enjoy Sea Haven Resort Motel!

1Found a special place to stay in Southampton on the east end of Long Island! Sea Haven Resort Motel at 52 Longview Road (631.377.3800). Extraordinary value, conveniently located & hidden away in a grove of pine trees! Love the entrance! Close to Sebonack, National Golf Links, & Shinnecock Hills, I opt for the name Golf Haven Resort Motel! A BIG 300-yard drive thank you to Owner/Operator Umar for hosting Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary! Stay tuned as Umar recently bought the property & continues to improve this special place in all aspects! I will be back!

Ann Liguori Looks like you fell in love with my home town!

Umar Khan: Andy, pleasure to have you, I will offer 10% off whoever mentions your name!

(Andy Reistetter; 5/22/19; Facebook Post with 1 Aerial Drone Videos)

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2019 East Coast Golf Journey: Drive out to the Montauk Lighthouse from the Hamptons!

3Beautiful drive out to Montauk Point from the Hamptons! Fun day of exploring, meandering, & stopping wherever & whenever I wanted to! Westhampton, Bridgehampton, East Hampton, Amangasett, Montauk, & the Lighthouse! Visited two golf courses but did not play. Met some nice people & had some interesting & informative conversations! I did not know topless sunbathing was legal in New York State! Drove out to the Shelter Island ferry but did not cross. Walked around Sag Harbor & had a delightful bowl of lobster bisque at the Dock House. Takeout pizza from P&G Pizza & back to Seahaven to watch Maelyn win The Voice! TROML Day indeed! #DiscoverLongIsland (Andy Reistetter; 5/22/19; Facebook Post with 30 Pics)

2019 ECGJ: Sebonack; Long Island’s Golfing Treasure Chest of 18 Spectacular Holes!

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First green with Sebonack Clubhouse in the background!

Walked and played Westhampton in the morning, drove the 16 miles, and played Sebonack in the afternoon riding in a cart with another great caddie Will!

The Welcome Statement below from the Sebonack website says it all! This is a historic haven of golf clubs out here on Long Island. Some with a climate and turf that duplicates that of St. Andrews, Scotland where golf originated over 500 years ago! The neighboring National Golf Links represents that history. With homage to the game of golf, its history, traditions, and its future, Jack Nicklaus and Tom Doak created a unique and meaningful golf course in XXX that fittingly takes its place in the continuum of golf past, present and future!

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Entrance Gate to Sebonack!

The entrance through the gate with the light atop with expansive lawn views transitioning to the par-3 8th hole over Cold Spring Pond and the uphill par-5 from tee to green to the magnificent high-ground Sebonack Clubhouse sets the stage for a great golfing experience!

The tee shot on the 355-yard par-4 first hole with a view of the Great Peconic Bay is the opening act! The hole takes you right down to the water and though short, it is difficult if you go long on your approach shot like I did! There are two greens, both on a cliff overlooking the water. I played the one straight away which is less difficult than the one tucked into a dog-leg-right!

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Third fairway back towards the Clubhouse!

The second hole looks hard and is hard! After a bunkered tee shot I was forced to blast out. Then I hit an errant 8-iron right but managed to pitch up and made a 12-footer for bogey!

The golf course absorbs you into its beauty and challenges you with its difficulty. The links at National Golf Links go out and back to Shinnecock Hills Golf Club on the inward land side of Sebonack. This is links golf in America!

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View from the 18th tee! Spectacular!

I made a bomb of about 75 feet on the par-3 4th hole for a deuce and miraculously 2-putted for a birdie on the par-5 9th! Yes I played the White Tees at 6,342 yards, not the black at 7,512 yards! But I did shoot 40 on the first nine!

While the first nine holes heads inland it seems most all of the back nine holes are on the water or have a view of the water! It really is a spectacular piece of land! No birdies for me on the second nine!

My caddie Will was outstanding! He even provided the sunlit golden picture of the Sebonack clubhouse for this story! Many thanks to the PGA Director of Golf Jason McCarty and the Sebonack Golf Club for hosting Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary!

Truly a lifetime golfing experience to play Sebonack!

The Welcome Statement from the Sebonack Website:

What a great time I had with Will!

What a great time I had with Will!

Situated on 300 acres in Southampton, NY, and neighboring the historic National Golf Links of America and Shinnecock Hills Golf Course, Sebonack has been carved out of land which seems to have been long-destined to become a golf course.

Sebonack features holes that offer panoramic views of Long Island’s Great Peconic Bay and Cold Spring Pond. The visual impact of the water vistas competes for the golfer’s eye with the rolling fairways, expansive bunkers and waste dunes, and undulating greens that present tricky swales and burrows. Meant to look as if manicured by time, Sebonack appears to have fashioned itself from the wild terrain.

Sunlit Sebonack Clubhouse! Photo Credit: Will Henry

Sunlit Sebonack Clubhouse! Photo Credit: Will Henry

Jack Nicklaus and Tom Doak, two designers with dramatically different styles, have used the natural contours and features of the land to create a unique look. The result is that Sebonack looks quite different from its illustrious neighbors and provides a strong golfing challenge for players of all calibers.

Spectacular cart ride (much needed) in the afternoon with caddie Will at Sebonack Golf Club. Enjoying the Hamptons after a week at the PGA Championship! Taking a ride out to Montauk today!

(Andy Reistetter; 5/21/19; Expanded Facebook Post with 30 Pics)

2019 ECGJ: Playing Seth Raynor’s Westhampton CC… Redan, Short, Biarritz et al…

With Zeny after playing... still smiling... he is a great caddie... I think I tired him out a bit though!

With Zeny after playing… still smiling… he is a great caddie… I think I tired him out a bit though!

Beautiful walk around Westhampton CC in the morning with caddie Zeny… one of Seth Raynor’s early designs in 1915… expertly restored by the 2016 Olympic Golf Course designer Gil Hanse in 2009… Redan at the 7th… Short at the 11th… Biarritz at the 17th… Raynor was born on Long Island in 1874 and died at the age of 52 in 1926… graduated from Princeton in 1898 and came back to Southhampton and started a landscaping and surveying business… Raynor’s big break and entry into the Golf World was to survey the The National Golf Links of America property for C.B. MacDonald in 1908… then MacDonald hired him to construct the golf course and several others including Old White at the Greenbrier… Raynor died in his prime of pneumonia in Palm Beach, Florida… other Seth Raynor masterpieces that I have played include Shore Acres in Chicago and Blue Mound Golf & Country Club outside Milwaukee… dream Raynor courses yet to be played include Chicago Golf Club, Fishers Island Club, and Yale University Golf Club!

With PGA Head Golf Professional Kirk Satterfield!

With PGA Head Golf Professional Kirk Satterfield!

Thoughts and memories of my time at Westhampton Country Club… played the Monday after witnessing another Brooks Koepka win at the PGA Championship at Bethpage Black… PGA Head Golf Professional Kirk Satterfield could not have been more welcoming… with kudos to my friend Ann Ligouri… fairly short even from the tips but make no mistake that this is an extreme test of golf given the Raynor/Hanse combined design and the wind nearly always present at this near Atlantic Ocean locale… Zeny was an awesome caddie, immediate friend, and wealth of course knowledge!

Bunkered long right on the Redan 7th... the rest of the story was actually pretty good but still a bogey 4!

Bunkered long right on the Redan 7th… the rest of the story was actually pretty good but still a bogey 4!

Historic clubhouse and men’s locker room although modern and updated a bit, still exudes historic golf… first tee right outside the clubhouse and pro shop doors… there is a burn just in front of the green on the short par-4 first hole… reminded me of the Old Course at St. Andrews but unfortunately not the only water hazard at Westhampton as in St. Andrews… combination of sand bunkers with protective elevated mounding starts to emerge on the second hole… deep bunkering on the short 3rd… then a 4-5-4 combination before arriving at the Redan 7th hole… cross the road to the 5th tee… make no mistake this Redan is as severe as they come… deep bunker long right which I experienced… back across the road after 8th green… the par-4 9th is a challenging hole with a risk-reward water hazard to navigate on the drive and bunkers to carry on the approach shot… memorable first nine, par-35 with two short holes and one long hole!

Deep, deep, deep bunker short right of the 15th green. I was short left of it! Thankfully!

Deep, deep, deep bunker short right of the 15th green. I was short left of it! Thankfully!

The 10th is another long par-4 with a water hazard short left of the green… the golf course is starting to feel like a bear when I reached the short par-3 11th… enveloped by Shore Road be sure to get a pic with a view of the water here… short does not mean easy, it means difficult in Seth Raynor’s vocabulary… avoid the water right on the drive on the 12th… the angle of approach to the big mounded green on the short par-4 13th is key… watch out for water right (same as 12th tee shot) of the par-5 14th green… watch out for the deep, deep, deep bunker (staircase to enter provided) short right of the 15th green… time to head eastward for the final 4-3-4 tricky punch of Westhampton… do not add up your scorecard yet… water carry on the 16th is no issue, bunker left is… don’t go over this green… the short 206-yard par 3 Biarritz 17th is spectacular… don’t get lost in the swale… somehow I managed a long 2-putt for par across the traverse… the home hole brings you gracefully back to the historic and grand Westhampton Clubhouse…

30First a pause, tip of the hat and a tap on the heart to Westhampton members Thomas M. Brennan, Timothy J. Coughlin, Jeffrey E. LeVeen, and Joseph P. Shea who lost their lives on September 11, 2001…

Do not underestimate the difficulty of the deep green-side bunkers on the 18th… and don’t go long and knock one off the clubhouse like I witnessed a playing partner do at the home hole of the Old Course… which took a hook and a flyer!

Many thanks to Ann, Kirk, and Zeny from Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary for this historic round of golf at the historic Westhampton Country Club!

(Andy Reistetter; 5/21/19; Expanded Facebook Post with 30 Pics)

Referenced Source

2019 ECGJ: Long Island’s Bethpage Black; Host to the 2019 PGA Championship!

The beauty of the par-5 4th hole of Bethpage Black!

The beauty of the par-5 4th hole of Bethpage Black!

Amazed at the incredible beauty of this golf course as I walked around the first nine today! Thinking Tiger will win back-to-back Majors…   (Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; Tuesday, 5-14-19).

Well it is PGA Championship time! Go Tiger! Golf course is fantastic even with all this rain! Here are pics from my walk around the second nine! Look whose golf ball I found? I think that it must have rolled out of his golf cart! Enjoy the 2019 PGA Championship any way you can!   (Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; Wednesday, 5-15-19).

Enjoy the beauty and challenge of Bethpage Black, the host golf course to the 2019 PGA Championship, in these pictures:

2019 East Coast Golf Journey: A Full Day Sightseeing in Manhattan

Great box seat to see the Book of Mormon on Broadway!

Great box seat to see the Book of Mormon on Broadway!

Full day in Manhattan! After mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral I walked down to Times Square & caught the matinee of the Book of Mormon which was pretty funny but ended with an upbeat spiritual message. Then I checked out some futuristic home exhibits. Went down to the World Trade Center to pay my respects & see the view from the Freedom Tower. A bit disappointed in that it was purely an observation tower with no storyline about or a message of freedom. Missed opportunity in my spirit & mind. Rainy overcast day so lucky to see a decent view. Oculus was pretty cool inside. Then I went back to Times Square to catch the evening performance of Mean Girls which was good too! Also a strong spiritual message to live by the Golden Rule! Double Feature TROML Day! Heading out to Bethpage tomorrow for PGA Championship Week. GO Tiger!!!   (Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 5-13-19)

2019 East Coast Golf Journey: Hello New York City from the Verrazzano Bridge!

5Per Wikipedia… named for Giovanni da Verrazzano, who in 1524 became the first documented European explorer to enter New York Harbor and the Hudson River. Never gets old coming across and seeing the Manhattan Skyline! Heading into the city tomorrow… FREEDOM Tower; Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral; Broadway Show and surely much more in the greatest city in the world! TROML Baby (an exclamation of JOY)!!!   (Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 10 Pics; Saturday, 5-11-19)