2019 Myrtle Beach World Am Play Write Article: Founders Club at Pawleys Island

4Well it’s ‘Sunday’ of the 2019 World Am for me—the 4th of four consecutive days of World Am golf’s 72-hole tournament! Today I drove south to play the Founders Club at Pawley’s Island! I loved this course with its waste bunkers outlining nearly every fairway! It was in great shape and a lot of fun to play! I started the day T12 hoping for a backdoor Top-10 but fell one stroke short after shooting an 88! Oh what could have been!

Congratulations to Jim Grinestaff who won our Flight 16 and went on to compete for the overall title on Friday! William Welch (West Islip, N.Y.) shot a net 69 (gross 85) to win the Flight Winners’ Playoff at Barefoot Resort’s Dye Course.

23Welch bested James Juden (Lancaster, Calif.) by a shot to emerge from a field of 3,215 golfers and claim the title of World Champion. Patrick Yoe (Athens, Ga.), Michael Thompson (Columbia, S.C.) and Paul Carrier (Cumming, Ga.) finished in a three-way tie for third at 1-under par on a day when only five players broke par.

Christopher Reina (Frisco, Tex.) shot a final-round 75 to secure a one-stroke victory over Kyle Rector (San Diego, Calif.) in the Gross Division.

3After the round I continued south (missing the last 19th Hole; imagine that!) arriving home in Ponte Vedra Beach after the 4-month, 7,685-mile, 2019 East Coast Golf Journey!

What a journey it was! Thank you to all I met along the way who helped make it all so special!

Time to rest up a bit and then…

#MBWorldAm

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 8-29-19)

2019 Myrtle Beach World Am Play-Write Article: Carolina North

17Finally a decent round of golf in the 2019 World Amateur! Of course it came at a Freddie Couples designed golf course! I have played and love his Chapel Ridge golf course outside Cary, NC. Played the Ibis-Heron nines at Carolina National! I would love to come back and play the third Egret nine! Love Freddie Couples whether he is on the golf course playing well as he did shooting a Sunday 63 a few weeks ago at the DICK’S Sporting Goods Open or if I am the one golfing on one of his golf courses! Steady round of 41+41=82 puts me at T12 in sniffing room of a backdoor Top 10 to go along with my T4 finish last year! Not sure what happened to the boat…

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 8-28-19)

2019 Myrtle Beach World Am Play-Write Article: King’s North

1We played the awesome & great King’s North at Myrtle Beach National in Round 2 of the 2019 World Am! What a treat to play an Arnold Palmer Signature Design with his statue outside and his presence in the Memorabilia Room inside the clubhouse! Simply a great design and fun golf experience even though I did not score as well as I would have liked!

Home of ‘The Gambler; the Most Unique Par-5 in All of Golf;’ Dedicated by Kenny Rogers on June 21st, 1996 with these famous lyrics: “You got to know when to hold ‘em; know when to fold ‘em; know when to walk away; know when to run…” I gambled and hit the island fairway with a hybrid; went for the green but was short in the water; took a drop at the end of the island fairway; hit a 7-iron over the water onto the green and 3-putted from 40 feet for double bogey! What I found interesting was that some golfer after hitting the island fairway reverted back to the regular fairway on their second shot which was no easy layup! Great risk-reward Arnold Palmer and Kenny Rogers hole!

2Tough 9 am shotgun start with an errant drive on the par-4 14th hole. Then I hit the next five greens in regulation only to 3-putt three of them from 15, 50, and 30 feet! My chipping let me down a bit; only one 1-putt and seven, yes, seven 3-putts! Total 42 putts; worse even in my life!

Everyone had a tough day. I didn’t realize I was playing with the leader Jim until after the round. He shot an 83 net 73 to maintain a 2-stroke lead. My cart mate and Facebook friend (we played together last year) shot the same score and is T7, eight shots back. It was just one of those days that I had what my golfing buddy Sir Walter phrased as “the melon head.”

3Believe it or not I did get the hang of reading the grain by looking at the cup and adjusting “the break” and speed accordingly! I also realized that I have been putting on bent grass greens the last 3 months up north in New York!

No excuses, I shot 90 net 81, and wound up 25th 18 strokes back of Jim! But with thoughts of what could have been as I hit 11 greens in regulation and on any other day would have shot in the 70s! But like there is no some day in the week; same for any other day!

30If you want to play a “Go for Broke” Arnold Palmer design; this is it and in my opinion all 18 holes are a gamble including the 18th hole with 40 bunkers (3-putt bogey from 30 feet) and the “SC (South Carolina) bunkered par-3 12th hole (3-putt bogey from 30 feet).

Enjoy King’s North at Myrtle Beach National as soon as you can!

PS: As the flowers on this golf course are so beautiful they must have a full-time horticulturist on staff!

#MBWorldAm

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 8-27-19)

2019 Myrtle Beach World Am Play-Write Article: General Hackler Course at CCU!

3Good first round in the 2019 PlayGolfMyrtleBeach.com World Amateur! Had a great time today—played the General Hackler Course at Coastal Carolina University, made three new friends—Taco (Rodger); Bryan from Bittersweet; and Lanny; and shot 85!

Such an enjoyable round on such a beautiful day—one of those days on the golf course where you feel the gentle, refreshing breeze, hear the birds singing, and feel present and at peace with nature, life, and the world in general!

We started on No. 12, the longest par-4 on the golf course. Taco Beef can hit the ball a long way, made a 25-footer and birdied it! After imperfection replaced perfection he called the birdie on the first hole played a curse for the tournament. I am not sure about that as he played a solid round! Just before his birdie Lanny made a BOMB for par! We were off to a good start!

6On our fifth hole Bryan and I realized we both lived in Gurnee, Illinois a northern suburb of Chicago. He lives there now and I did for 10 years starting back in the mid 1990s. Then I realized he was wearing a Bittersweet shirt which was my home club when I was there! So out of 3,215 we somehow were magically paired together!

We started chatting about SJ our mutual friend which distracted me a bit (my rationalization of course since I never have half-shanked and popped up a hybrid-2 into a fairway bunker, then tried hitting a hybrid-4 only to be left in deep rough 200 yards from the hole hitting four; fore! LOL!

4Even with the double bogey I managed to be only 4 over par the first 9 holes boosted by a birdie on No. 1. BTW, for the record, we were talking about Jesus on that hole, not SJ!

I was rolling along, playing well, even learning along the way, imagine that! After seeing Taco Touch’s (really is a great putter) putt on the par-3 5th hole run out I adjusted to the changing green conditions and had a nice 2-putt par from about 25 feet.

Then I got a freaky bad break on the par-5 6th hole! My drive, slightly off line to the right hit something and ricocheted up 20 feet and directly right 30 feet out-of-bounds. Nines are automatic in the World Am but I still tapped in my final putt to make it official.

19Going 1-over for the last 3 holes including a mindless 3-putt from 15 feet on the par-3 10th hole was a good omen for tomorrow’s second round. Taco Accuracy put one in close on the 10th to win the Proximity Award for the day!

Despite a nine and two double bogeys, the 85 was a good start, the highest score I could have shot by 5-7 strokes! No tournament is ever won on the first day of a four-day competition! Here in the World Am you hope to make the cut and win it on the 5th day!

I am late for the World’s Largest 19th Hole…

FYI, a little tongue-in-cheeks golf writers humor embedded in the pics…

#MBWorldAm

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 8-26-19)

2019 ECGJ: Playing C. V. State Park with the “Too-Young-To-Be-A-Legend” Joan E. Davis

22This is what I love about life and golf… first of all, playing the Chenango Valley State Park Golf Course… a labor of love built by the CCC during the Depression… try getting out of pine trees planted on 3-foot centers! Totally in tune with nature!

Secondly, playing golf with the ‘too-young-to-be-a-legend’ Joan E. Davis and a literal newcomer to the game, playing her very first round, my writer friend Carol! Joan is an expert instructor, especially likes working with women that are new to the game, in love and honor of her own hero, the gone-all-too-soon LPGA Teaching Professional Jorie Ftorek.

2 Truly amazing to watch the interaction of experienced and newcomer as the love, fun and physical nature of the game is being passed along. Good to see the game through the eyes of a first-timer! And yes, Carol did pick up Joan’s ball marker on the green thinking she found something valuable to be returned to its rightful owner! LOL!

So good to experience and play ‘State Park,’ a must every season and if you are lucky enough to play every week!

Love the socks Joan!

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 8-9-19)

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: Play Bristol Harbour Overlooking Canandaigua Lake outside Rochester, NY!

1‘Buddy Golf” at its BEST at Bristol Harbour on Canandaigua Lake! What a great finish to the AGTD Visit Rochester trip! Bristol Harbour, along with Sabina Ravenwood, and The Links at Greystone are part of the Finger Lakes Golf Trail! Spectacular views, spectacular golf course (Robert Trent Jones Sr. design) , and spectacular golf too… at times! JB and I both birdied the difficult par-5 10th hole! The bunkering is spectacular! The clubhouse is spectacular too! Lunch was delicious! The view- WOW!!! My Buddy Drone was grounded due to high winds… YES, “Make Every Moment Count!” TROML Baby (an exclamation of JOY & GRATITUDE)!!! Thank you to Tim & Bristol Harbor and Visit Rochester for hosting Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary! More will be written about the golf experience and the visit to Rochester!

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

2019 ECGJ: Play Ravenwood Golf Club in Victor, New York outside Rochester!

14Everyone’s coming to Visit Rochester! Pure coincidence that the SJF group is here! Well then again was that really my friend Phil BOMBING that drive or an imposter! WHAT, no invitation for Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary??? Play well gentlemen!

CLICK HERE to see a Video of my friend Phil bomb a drive off the 1st at Ravenwood Golf Club!

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 1 Video; 7-18-19)

Great round of golf at Ravenwood Golf Club with Rich of Visit Rochester who shot a 74 with 3 straight birdies! Thank you to GM Mike Roeder for hosting Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary!

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 7-18-19)

2019 ECGJ: Play The Links at Greystone in Walworth, New York outside Rochester!

30Fantastic golfing experience at the Links at Greystone in Walworth, NY just outside Rochester! World class design by Architect Craig Schreiner; fantastic course conditions & setup by GCSAA Superintendent Tim Hahn, and playing partner Dusty Odenbach, PGA Director of Golf and 4th generation of the Dolomite mining and golf legacy made for an extra special round of golf. Golf like it ought to be all the time!

This links masterpiece opened in 1996. The third in succession of the Odenbach mining family turned golfing family—Shadow Lakes—Shadow Pines—then Greystone! At 7200+ yards from the tips, with sloping greens and fairways it is all the golf course you could ever want! The greens are rolling pure and true!

25Hole Nos. 5 through 8; what I call Odie’s Valley (Odie an affectionate nickname for Odenbach) is particularly scenic on an overwhelmingly scenic golf course! Dusty’s grandfather, the golf originator of the family in the 1980s, doesn’t play the difficult uphill par-4 7th hole hole with a blind approach anymore. Legacy has its privileged. I hit two great shots and a magnificent chip and putt to score a par, in effect a gift from Heaven on the hole they call High Heaven!

All the shots are played and all the clubs used on this golf course. Very playable with one golf ball. There was a memorable photo opp with Dusty amidst the grey stones high right of the fairway on the par-5 12th hole. The second nine meanders up the slope to give you an especially dramatic view coming down to the par-4 home hole. As an ode to the legacy I managed to par the 18th too!

10Playing with Dusty was an exceptional experience and a great opportunity to see the golf course and family business through his eyes and heart. A top prospect out of UCONN in baseball he pitched in the Kansas City Royals system for four years. While he didn’t make it to the major leagues in baseball his contributions to the family legacy are above major league. Planting of fescue and tree removals for scenic vistas and views of the clubhouse coming in are the top priorities to transform the links design ever closer to a true links course.

The reality that the family sold the mining and golfing operations only to buy back the Shadow Lakes and Greystone ten years later tells you all you need to know about the Odenbach family and their love of golf and the golf business. The Clubhouse and Stoney’s Pub have a historic golf memorabilia flair. The golfing and culinary experiences are a magnet for corporate tournaments and league play. A travel foursome from Toronto joined me and Dusty at the bar for lunch. I was intrigued by and loved the Speedie Marinated Beef with House Made Cheese Sauce on a Pretzel Roll.

1I have seen the best play the game of golf. Dusty’s athleticism and club head speed is amazing! Our round and good time together is what golf is all about. Go and play with folks you already know like the Canadian foursome was doing today at Greystone. Go and play by yourself and meet someone new through golf like I did today. Either way it is a win-win!

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 30 Pics; 7-17-19)

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)