Posts Written by Dianne Hutton
Whether you’re taking up golf as a new sport or looking to improve, Heritage Pointe is equipped with a fantastic practice facility that is available to all public players. We are fortunate to have a very unique setting for us to practise our game. We spend time on the range hitting numerous balls at different targets but when we get to the golf course it never seems to work as well. The remedy to this is maybe to go to Heritage Pointe and explore their 3-hole course “The Loop” with its full length par 3, 4 and 5. They also have a driving range, a 13,000 square foot practice green and bunkers – the perfect spot to practice and improve your short game.
As a member of Golfaround Steve has offered us a special discounted rate so we can enjoy what they have to offer:
DAILY PRACTICE FACILITY RATES-Loop Only (All Day)
DAILY PRACTICE FACILITY PACKAGES-Loop & Range (All Day)
In addition to this we have a Proshop discount of 10% off equipment and 20% off soft goods.
We are starting the season off with some great moments of brilliance, the first day of our 2018 season, Cindy Booth got an eagle at Heritage Pointe. She got this on hole 9 on Heritage the hole with the island green…..good job. Margaret MacFarlane shot a 46 at The Winston and it would have been much better if a par 3 didn`t chew her up….way to go Margaret. Rita Schmitt came out at Elbow Springs feeling a bit under the weather but guess what she had her best game ever… you just never know.
Keep up the good work ladies and have FUN.
As a beginner golfer it can be intimidating to play on a golf course for the first time. How do I book? Where do I go? What are those coloured stakes? and many more questions for sure. This is the reason we offer the Beginner Golf Course Orientation.
We held this at Heritage Pointe in Calgary and Dragons Head in Edmonton. They were very well attended and the weather was warm and sunny. Each group had an experienced mentor who did their best to introduce them to the intricacies of a golf course and offered suggestions for playing ready and courteous golf. After learning the basics of the tee box which is the starting point on each hole of a golf course and what the different sets of tees meant, the gals had fun hitting their balls down the fairway. The play was interspersed with advice on how to manage lost balls, balls in the rough and how to know how far away from the pin you were. Then there was the sand bunker and where you leave the rake after raking the trap. The putting green offered the opportunity to learn about the flag stick, minding it and being watchful of someone’s line and repairing a ball mark. We also had some dreaded water to contend with at Heritage, but all was well. Golf is a great game we don’t have to be athletic or strong we just have to be patient, persistent and thoughtful of others. Only about 15 minutes of a 4 hour round is spent actually swinging the golf club so enjoy the rest of the time appreciating you playing partners and the serene and scenic surroundings.
We finished the session in the club houses enjoying a bite and beverage a good time was had by all.
Most golfers do not know that their insect repellent will harm turf, especially when directed at legs and ankles. The overspray usually leaves a pattern of a green footprint or footprints surrounded by straw-colored injured turf. Now that the snow is finely gone and the leaves have opened up, armies of pesky bugs are coming out. Our first plan of attack is usually to get the cobwebs off that can of bug spray from the bottom of the golf bag. Turf crews work really hard at getting that carpet feel grass that golfers love so much. When you’re spraying on that bug spray for protection, it’s also showering the grass around you. It takes less than a day for that spray to ruin all those hours of hard work and leave your footprints behind. The solution to this problem is to spray legs and ankles on a cart path or other non-turf surface where the overspray will not contact grass. Depending on conditions and the amount of spray on the grass, these spots usually recover in 1-4 weeks. In extreme cases, though, they can result in the death of the patch of turf. Please be vigilant and use the spray in the parking lot or on paved pathways. The maintenance crews will thank you and other golfers as well. Enjoy your summer and stay bug free.
This article was written by a golf professional many years ago, but I am sure nothing much has changed so we felt it was well worth sharing.
The life of a Golf Professional……the dream of many. No one can escape from being asked “what do you do for a living?” As a Golf Professional, I know if I answer truthfully I will have to endure the long pause, the glazed over stare, the slow upward turn of the lips, and then wait for the inevitable “A golf pro eh? Wow I’d love to golf every day for a living! What do you do in the Winter? Why am I slicing the ball? What’s the best ball out there today? What exactly do you do? It occurs to me that number one people LOVE to talk about golf and number two, few people understand what golf professional do. Listing the job’s responsibilities would read like a resume so instead let’s take a walk through an average day of the Golf Professional.
“HONEY! WAKE UP IT’S 4:45am YOU’RE GOING TO BE LATE FOR WORK!” my wife ‘calmly’ wakes me. Reality strikes hard. My shower is quick, my deodorant is generously applied and “SHOOT” my cotton pants aren’t ironed! Thank goodness for summer wool. As I drive to work (work being the pro shop not the first hole at the Players Championship which some actually believe)I pray that the beating rain miraculously disappears by the time I get to the golf course. As I approach the club the dark clouds part, I lift my hands towards heaven and cry “Thank You” The weather can be a friend or foe to the Golf Professional. But for now the weather is cooperating, there is no chance of frost and the tee times should run smoothly. I take a quick look at my day timer to re-fresh my memory……morning ladies league start at 8:00am, club fittings at 8:30, meeting with a corporate tournament committee at 10:00, management meeting at 1:00, show samples of shirts for client at 3:45 and lessons from 4:45 to 6:30.
I take a deep breath and look out of the window at the first hole. The view is beautiful and it occurs to me how often I have taken this beauty for granted. My smile broadens as I see good old Carl Scott walking towards the pro shop with his precious 30 year old clubs trailing behind him. He always has a story to share ! It occurs to me: golf is great but golfers are greater! FOCUS, I tell myself. I check my emails…ouch! Okay deal with one email at a time! I encourage myself. Here I go and here Neal comes. Neal is a young new assistant to the staff and is a promising professional. He asks if I have time to review the work he has done on this weekends mixed tournament. I look at my lengthy TO DO list and answer ” Of course”. He accepts my praise with a humble smile and he absorbs my suggestions like a sponge.
I return to the first “do” on my TO DO list: Return Sandy’s call and confirm ball order and logo. As I pick up the phone, Keith, a newer member, comes into the office upset about yesterdays pace of play. I place the phone on it’s cradle and we take a little time to rectify the problem. As we walk out of the pro shop I take note of our staff: Dean is changing a floor display. Janice is helping a member try on a pair of shoes. Brent is answering the phone and Craig is checking in a guest. At the range, the outside service staff are on task and the back shop employees are providing good service. I think back to the intense training I put the staff through in the spring to get to this place today. Wow it was well worth the effort.
As I work my way back to the office. I look at my watch it reads 8:15am. The day has just begun.
We had not offered the Spring Tune-up in Palm Springs since 2014 so it was great to be back again. The package was from Sunday to Friday, but we left on Good Friday to get things organized. We left Calgary in a snow storm and it was -9 C. We arrived in Palm Springs and it was 44 C, what a difference. The temperature did not stay quite this high, thank goodness, but it was a lot better than here. We arrived at the newly renovated Doubletree by Hilton and the difference was wonderful, they did a great job . It is such a great property.
Our teaching team this year were Patty, Rand and Bill, a repeat performance by Patty and Rand and Bill was the new kid on the block. We enjoyed the format spending time at each of the stations which covered both long and short game. Patty did a great job, as usual, tweaking our pitching, putting and sand play. Rand and Bill identified and corrected those little things that get in the way for us to improve our swings. Patty asked us to keep track of our putts when we played the day after our lesson, Jane had 6 one putts, the total for her round was 33 and I had 7 one putts on the front nine, not so good on the back nine. It never hurts to have a tweak. Thanks Patty.
We had a great meet and greet Sunday night, it was so good to see everyone and to have representation from both Calgary and Edmonton again. Some of the group got to attend the final day of The Dinah Shore Classic, it was quite the finish. Many of us did additional golf including a nine and dine at one of our favorites, Escena. We golfed, dined, shopped and enjoyed the sun and the pool. Life dosn’t get much better than that and we also got some great golf tips.
Malaysia offered us a myriad of interesting, diverse and exciting adventures.
Penang, was a fascinating fusion of the East and West and you can certainly feel the Chinese influence as 70% of the inhabitants are of this culture. Penang embraces modernity while retaining its traditions and old world charm. It is steeped in history as we can attest to. We strolled down a living heritage community as we visited Chew Jetty. What started as a wooden passageway slowly became a cluster of houses perched above the sea shores by stilts, this site is locked away in a time zone by itself disregarding the urban development taking place around it. We saw an array of temples the best of which was Kek Lok Si the largest Buddhist Temple in Malaysia. It was a truly impressive complex housing temple grounds, temples, gardens, the pagoda and the four heavenly kings pavilion and an enormous statue of the Goddess of Mercy. After that we experienced riding the funicular train up to Penang Hill where I saw my first monkey cup plant. Georgetown was unique and I wish we had had more time to explore.
While Penang boasts of exquisite restaurants and fast food outlets serving everything from Japanese, Korean, Italian, English and French to Indian, Chinese, Malay, Indonesian and Thai cuisine, it is her hawker fare that both locals and foreigners cannot get enough of and we tried that out a few steps from our hotel.
Kota Kinabalu or KK as it is known by the natives has bustling markets, modern boardwalk, beaches and waterfront. Just a speed boat away were beautiful islands and the snorkling was outstanding even though Lorie stubbed her toe badly, it was black and looked yucky sure glad we didn’t have to amputate. A highlight of the trip to the Kilas wetlands was our trip through the mangrove swamp, accompanied by the secret rhythm of fireflies and their flickering lights. There were thousands.
Our highlight was the sojourn in the jungle. Who would have known that you could travel two hours by boat to the middle of the Jungle and find a top notch Resort, the Sukau Rainforest Lodge, in the middle of nowhere, This is one of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World. What a feeling to be completely secluded in the jungle listening to the music of the Rainforest! Imagine gliding down the river in the morning mists and the afternoon light, spotting wildlife up close from a quiet electric-motored boat. We could stroll right from our room into the jungle on an elevated boardwalk, stopping to see wildlife and tropical plants. We dined on a riverfront terrace, taking in the view over delicious meals as well as watching monkeys and rare birds flit among the trees as we cooled off in the refreshing pool. The nighttime river cruise allowed us to see sleeping birds up front and personal, it seemed surreal.
Everything was top notch and even if we did not see the pigmy elephants we saw an amazing array of monkeys and an orangutan and junior We identified many different birds as well as dozens of primates, reptiles, and a variety of land mammals.,
The memories and experiences will stay with us for the rest of our lives!
We enjoyed the golf, even though it was very hot and humid. The courses were all different as were our experiences. My personal favorite was Sutera Harbour in KK. We enjoyed beautiful vistas and we encountered many challenges, monkeys taking our balls, water hazards and rough, and our night golf was especially interesting if you did not hit in the beams bye bye ball.
Our final destintion Kuala Lumpur offered us excitement as there was a major thunder storm when we were downtown visiting The Petronas Twin Towers, what a rush that was. The architecture is indeed amazing and we appreciated it all.
It was hard to get back to reality and the snow, but we feel blessed to be able to get a few escapes here and there.
Many of us don’t use a power cart that often and because of that may not be aware that some things we do or don’t do can annoy your golfing partners. Have you ever been playing with someone who is always sitting in the cart and is never ready to hit her ball? There are certain un-written rules that apply to golfing in a power cart. When on the tee box everyone should be there ready to hit their ball. When two players in a cart hit to opposite sides of a hole, drive to first ball and drop off that player with his club, then drive to the second ball. After both players hit, meet up farther down the hole. Players should anticipate which club or clubs they are going to use and go directly to their ball be prepared to hit when it is their turn. When walking from your cart to your ball, take a couple clubs with you. Taking only one club, then having to return to the cart to retrieve a different club, is a huge time-waster. In addition if you are in the cart alone your partners should be there to assist driving your cart when needed and also the rider should be aware of assisting their partner and also communicating who will take the cart behind the green depending upon the shots that need to be made.
This we thought would be a good time to re-visit our weather policy. As we all know winter has had it’s grips on us for a long time and none of us are sure when Spring will finally arrive. If there is still white stuff on the ground in May it will be an easy call as the golf courses will not be open. But on the other hand they may be open and the following comes into effect. Spring in Calgary and Edmonton is unpredictable and sometimes if we are fair weather golfers and wait for the perfect day to golf they may be few and far between. Don’t let inclement weather ruin your game. If you know what to expect you will be prepared for it and will have an enjoyable game. If it is cool, and at times, dress in layers. Choose garments that do not restrict your movement. Dressing in layers lets you adapt to the temperature, as it gets warmer you can remove a layer or two. For those chilly days it is a good idea to have a headband and some warm gloves in your bag, there have been times when club covers were used, but gloves do work best. A good rain suit is also useful and another good tip is to keep an extra towel, gloves and socks in the spokes of your umbrella to keep them dry.
The Golfaround policy is that if you have booked golf you do show at the golf course. You may not have to golf if it is especially inclement but weather can be very different in different parts of the city so it is hard to predict. If you are a fair weather golfer you may want to take your chances and book last minute. Golf courses rarely close due to inclement weather but if they did we will let you know on the website so always check there. Let’s hope that Spring is just around the cornor