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2020 Calendar

May

7 • Thu
POSTPONED TO LATER DATE—TBD
Fivesome
Overlake Golf & Country Club


August

TBD
Annual Meeting
Location to be determined


September

TBD
Crew Tournament
Druids Glen Golf Course


December

15–17 • Tue–Thu
Washington Turf and Landscape Show
Pesticide Recertification Seminars and Pre-License Pesticide Training (Dec. 16–17, Location TBD)
Equipment Manager Seminars at Chambers Bay Golf Course (Dec. 15)


More Calendar Items

Recent Jobs

Horticulture Assistant
The Golf Club at Newcastle
Newcastle, WA

Assistant in Training
The Golf Club at Newcastle
Newcastle, WA

Golf Course Maintenance Aide 1 (Seasonal)
Bellevue Golf Course
Bellevue, WA

Assistant Superintendent
Whidbey Golf Club
Oak Harbor, WA

Grounds Equipment Mechanic
West Seattle Golf Course
Seattle, WA

View More Jobs

LATEST NEWS

Definition of Minimum Golf Course Maintenance

Click here to read a one-page document from the GCSAA and USGA outlining what they maintain constitutes minimum golf course maintenance. You may find this helpful to lean on if you are ever queried by either your management, crew or local community as to what guide you use to determine your own level of minimum maintenance.


The State's Position on Golf

As I mentioned in a previous email, the WWGCSA had submitted a form of inquiry with the state to clarify its position on golf. Please see the state’s response below, in summary:

All golf operations are to be closed
Essential maintenance is permitted

The verbatim response:

Thank you for your inquiry. Under Proclamation 20-25, neither the operation nor enjoyment of a golf course qualifies as an essential business or activity. Only minimum basic operations, as described in (3)(d) of the Proclamation, are permitted. Course maintenance is also permitted insofar as it prevents imminent damage to the fairways, greens, and other outdoor amenities.

Please know that we take this decision very seriously. Nonetheless, we believe that the best way to control the spread of COVID-19 is to temporarily limit interaction as much as possible. This is not an indictment on the importance of golf, nor is it permanent.

We have clarity.

I hope this finds you well.

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Seeking Clarification from Governor's Office

The Golf Alliance of WA has submitted this form as part of our attempt to get clarification from the Governor’s office on issues related to the Golf Industry. The WWGCSA Board believes it would be helpful if more our membership and constituents also completed and submitted the form to give us the best chance of getting clarity. If you would do so, and share the link with your general managers, we think that could be very helpful. It doesn’t take long, and to make it easier for you and also foster consistency in the tone of our request, I have provided you a copy of how I filled out the form here.

Read More

 

Update on Proclamation

Here is what the WWGCSA and the Golf Alliance of Washington has learned from the current “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” proclamation by Governor Inslee.

Play on Golf Courses —Given the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order made by Governor Inslee on March 23rd, Washington Golf in collaboration with the Golf Alliance of Washington immediately sent a letter to the Governor’s office asking for clarification on whether golf courses could stay open and are intended to be available for use as outdoor exercise. As of 1:00 p.m. on 3/25, we are still one of 3,000 requests for clarification they have been working through. We have been informed that they are developing a comprehensive document to all the requests and we may not see anything for another 24 hours.

We will continue to seek clarification and let you know. However, based on the recent announcements from Washington State Parks and Department of Natural Resources, it would be difficult to say courses are authorized to operate without clarity from the Governor’s office. As of right now, it’s a judgement call each golf course is going to have to make on their own. Look for a follow up email once we receive communication from the Governor. We will support the Governor’s decision as we fight this virus; we just seek clarity to his order.

Maintenance of Golf Courses
Section 3 of the Proclamation states:

To implement this mandate, I hereby order that, effective midnight on March 25, 2020, all non-essential businesses in Washington State are prohibited from conducting all activities and operations except minimum basic operations . . .

For purposes of this Proclamation, minimum basic operations are the minimum activities necessary to maintain the value of the business’ inventory, preserve the condition of the business’ physical plant and equipment, ensure security, process payroll and employee benefits, facilitate employees of the business being able to continue to work remotely from their residences, and related functions.

We believe this information should provide the necessary cover for courses to at least take care of their grounds per the wording “maintain the value of the business’ inventory [and] preserve the condition of the business’ physical plant and equipment . . .”

These are incredibly uncertain times for everyone. The Western WA Golf Course Superintendents’ Association wishes everyone to be safe and stay healthy. We will keep you posted as we learn more.

May this find you safe and well,
Bill Ackerley
Executive Director

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Governor's Proclamation

Click here to read the Governor’s “proclamation,” which is a different document than his “order” that was sent previously. Despite being much shorter than the order, it actually addresses the issue of “maintenance” though not in the category of golf maintenance specifically: 

See section 3, second paragraph:

To implement this mandate, I hereby order that, effective midnight on March 25, 2020, all non-essential businesses in Washington State are prohibited from conducting all activities and operations except minimum basic operations.

Then see section 3.d.:

 For purposes of this Proclamation, minimum basic operations are the minimum activities necessary to maintain the value of the business’ inventory, preserve the condition of the business’ physical plant and equipment, ensure security, process payroll and employee benefits, facilitate employees of the business being able to continue to work remotely from their residences, and related functions.

While clarification or even a designation related to ongoing maintenance from the Governor’s office would be valuable, your WWGCSA believes this information should provide the necessary cover for courses to at least take care of their grounds so as to “maintain the value of the business’ inventory [and] preserve the condition of the business’ physical plant and equipment . . . ”

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Seeking Clarity on Executive Order

After much discussion amongst fellow associations of the Golf Alliance of Washington, with input from each of our national organizations, this letter is being delivered to the Governor’s office seeking a response on two items:

We seek clarity of whether his Executive Order forces the closing of golf courses for the purpose of outdoor exercise.

If courses are to close, we seek that golf course maintenance be designated an essential business activity.

Please note that we are not advocating one way or the other as to whether golf courses should remain open, we are merely seeking clarification as to whether golf courses are meant to be included as “outdoor exercise,” a phrase used in the Governor’s Executive Order that did not provide any more detail. We are, however, advocating that if the courses are to be closed, that golf course maintenance be designated as an essential business activity, for reasons articulated in the letter. For your benefit, the 14-page Executive Order itself as presented on the Governor’s website can be read here.

We will let you know as soon as we hear a response.

Read More

What Superintendents Are Doing To Manage Social Distancing On Their Golf Courses

Eliminating things golfers will likely touch:

  • Near the clubhouse: communal push carts, airhose nozzles, handheld shoe brushes, cups on the practice green (ask players to use tees or coins as targets)
  • On the course: Rakes, divot bottles, ballwashers, water jugs, and flag sticks (but leave the cups at normal height, challenge players to hit to the middle of the green).

Closing the following areas:

  • Practice ranges
  • Practice greens
  • Water Fountains

Changing the following things:

  • At least one Superintendent “removed the cups from our putting green, filled in the holes and placed rope stakes on the green to give something for golfers to putt to (similar to what is done at Bandon Dunes).”
  • Some Superintendents have raised the cups on the course’s green by an inch, or simply flip the cups upside down
  • Most all have covered ball washers in some way, at times with trash bags and tape, or perhaps removed them altogether.
  • Bathrooms: sanitize the inside and outside handles, as we all as the seats in a Sani-can by using a bleach solution 2-4x a day
  • Any doors not already closed for the time being should be propped open
  • Provide players with sanitized towels that are exchangeable at the turn.
  • Allow only one rider per power cart, unless riders are spouses—and disinfect
  • Greg Matz of Inglewood did something different:
    • Placeholder image Here was one thing we came up with the for the cup. A 4” circle of AstroTurf with a hole cut in the middle to slide down the flagstick. We set it about ½” deep in the cup so the ball can roll in, but nobody has to reach in the cup or touch the flagstick. Started on Tuesday, and a member had a hole in one on the first day! We like it better than leaving the cup 1” up to deflect balls.

Do you have another idea, please send it our way to share.

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Update on “Recreational Facilities” Definition

(View enlarged image)

All, Thank you for your patience, but at least for now we have clarity as it relates to use of our golf courses (not to be confused with our clubhouses). It’s not easy to find, but the governor’s website now has provided more detailed guidance as it relates to Washington State’s policy on Social Distancing, with specific reference to Golf Courses. See the ALLOWED box, middle column below: You can find the summary by clicking here.

Be safe and healthy.


Dear WWGCSA Member,

Last night, Governor Inslee announced that he will sign a statewide emergency proclamation today to temporarily shutdown “restaurants, bars, and entertainment and recreational facilities.”

The WWGCSA has been reaching out this morning to as many resources as possible as to what “recreational facilities” means. Thus far, we do not have a clear answer as to whether golf courses are intended to be a part of that category. The feedback we are receiving is that while golf courses are listed under the category of Recreational Facilities per the state’s Department of Revenue code, they may not be what the governor intended per his decree. The general belief is that he is targeting indoor facilities and gatherings of 50 or more. But we don’t know for sure.

We are working with the Washington Golf Alliance (WA Golf, CMAA, PNGA, WWPGA) to get a clear answer. As soon as we have one, we will let you know.

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Both the OGCSA/WWGCSA Service Project and WWGCSA Fivesome Postponed

All, amidst the multitude of other impacts that the current health crisis has placed on events both inside and outside our region, I have two more to announce.

Our service project that we conduct in concert with the Oregon Golf Course Superintendents’ Association, originally scheduled to be held at the Children’s Course in Gladstone, Oregon this coming Thursday (March 18) has been postponed to a later date, yet to be determined. This event was to be the second in two years jointly served by our two chapters. Despite the natural disappointment expressed by those at the Children’s course, all involved agree that this is the right decision at this time.

Also, one of the WWGCSA’s largest events of the year, the Fivesome, originally scheduled to be held at Overlake Golf & Country Club Thursday May 7 will be postponed to a later date, likely sometime in late summer or early fall. As soon as there is consensus as to when it is prudent to put on large gatherings again in our region, we will inform as to the venue and date that we are able to secure for the 2020 WWGCSA Fivesome.

By this point, most all of us have been impacted by COVID-19 and/or the measures in place to attempt to combat it. The WWGCSA supports our respective leaders in this effort, and wish you and those important to you safe and healthy wishes as you grapple with these unusual times.

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WWGCSA Cancels Spring Meeting As Our Region Grapples With The COVID-19 Virus

Given the health fears that have emerged over the last few weeks, especially in our region and emphasized by Governor Inslee’s declaration today about group gatherings, the Western Washington Golf Course Superintendent’s Association has decided to cancel our Spring Meeting on March 24, scheduled to be held at Tacoma Country and Golf Club.

In consultation with Board President Ryan Semritc and other Board members, we felt it was best that, as an Association, we should support both our governmental leadership and the advice of expert health professionals in doing the right thing—as the rest of the world and our immediate community grapples with slowing down the impact of the COVID-19 virus. We hope to find a way to return to Tacoma Country & Golf Club in the not too distant future. At this time, there are no plans to change any of the rest of our scheduled events, but we will continue to monitor things and let you know if any other plans change. In the meantime, the WWGCSA wishes for you and your loved ones to be safe and healthy.

Read More

Oregon and Washington Golf Course Superintendents To Help Get Children's Course Ready For Spring

A collection of as many as 60 Golf Course Superintendents from the states of Oregon and Washington are gathering at the Children’s Course in Gladstone,OR to provide volunteer labor and equipment to help get the course ready for the upcoming Spring and Summer Seasons. The Service Project will be held on Thursday, March 19, between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m.

The effort is a collaboration of the Oregon Golf Course Superintendents Association (OGCSA) and the Western Washington Golf Course Superintendents Association (WWGCSA). Each is a regional chapter of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA). This is the second annual joint service project between the two GCSAA Chapters. Last year, a group of Superintendents from both Associations made the trip to American Lake Veterans Course to help Randy Moen and his team get their course ready for the upcoming season.

The Children’s Course is a place where every child is provided the opportunity to pursue a pathway to personal success through building a strong mind and learning lessons for life through the game of golf. Since 1996 the mission of the Children’s Course has been to provide every child an opportunity for personal success. Founder, Duncan Campbell, envisioned using golf to provide positive youth development by focusing on instilling integrity and making people of rich character. The belief is that the game of golf affords a holistic learning experience that teaches interpersonal skills, sportsmanship, etiquette, self-control, mental discipline as well as physical skills. Students learn to be responsible and develop a sense of judgment as they evaluate actions and their consequences.

Getting the course ready for Spring with the help of the Golf Course Superintendents, who greatly admire the mission that the Children’s Course serves, is symbolic of the appreciation that all adult citizens have for opportunities to advance the learning of our young people through outdoor activities.

If you would like to help in the effort, while representing the WWGCSA, your participation would be greatly appreciated. You can register through this link.

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WWGCSA Invites Carol Rau, Certified HR Professional, To Speak At March 24 Spring Meeting

It’s difficult to focus on doing what is necessary on your current job, while also staying on top of making sure you are well-positioned, and well prepared, for whatever is next. Whether what’s next is part of a designed path, an unforeseen opportunity, or an unfortunate setback. For this reason, it’s important to be up to speed about how opportunities in our industry are being marketed, evaluated and fulfilled in today’s landscape. To help with all of this, the WWGCSA has invited Carol Rau, a Certified Professional in Human Resources with over twenty years of experience in recruiting, career coaching, resume building, public speaking and Human Resources consulting, to our 2020 Spring Meeting at Tacoma Country & Golf Club (Tue March 24th).

Carol will offer insights as a Career Consultant, Speaker, and Writer with winning strategies in resume building, interview preparation, portfolio consulting, and career coaching for professionals in the golf industry. Since 2005, she has provided career consulting services for GCSAA and its members including resume and cover letter building, interview preparation, portfolio consulting, and career coaching. Rau founded Career Advantage in 2003 and thrives on assisting golf industry professionals to stand out among job candidates, conduct winning job searches, and ultimately advance their careers.

She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Communications from the University of Kansas where she was a member of the Women’s Golf Team. Carol has served on several Boards of Directors in the Lawrence, Kansas community including her local club as former President and Greens Chair. She enjoys golfing and cheering for the Jayhawks with her husband and two sons.

Come here Carol speak to your career needs and aspirations. Join us at the Spring Meeting by registering here. We look forward to seeing you, Tuesday, March 24 at Tacoma Country & Golf Club

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Randy Moen Named 2020 Recipient of Paul Backman Memorial Distinguished Service Award

Randy Moen had spent most of his adult career as a Union Sheetmetal/HVAC worker. But in 2007 he started volunteering at American Lake Veterans Golf Course. Back then, the course had only 9 holes and was having difficulty finding the resources to be maintained well. Randy reflects that that’s when “I decided to put a little more effort into the appearance of this beautiful course.”

Randy became the Superintendent at American Lake Veterans Golf Course in 2014. At about the same time, Jack Nicklaus donated the design work which led to the development of the course’s back 9 in 2015.

The ALVGC website explains that the course exists solely because of dedicated volunteers. Combined with the gift of golf legend Jack Nicklaus, the nation’s only golf course designed for the rehabilitation of wounded and disabled veterans now offers our deserving veterans a first class, entirely ADA-accessible, 18-hole golf course.

Randy believes that “with Nicklaus’ gift, the help of 40 eager grounds volunteers, and an awesome mechanic named Bob Funseth (who has volunteered at American Lake for 20 years) we have made ALVGC into a premier golf course. In 2019, we had over 36,000 rounds played.”

Of course, it’s more than that. Randy’s infectious attitude and enthusiasm has made it easy for the WWGCSA and others to rally behind his, and his large crew of volunteers, efforts to make the American Lake course a special one. Randy has overseen dramatic change as well as an influx of outside help to assist in the transformation. The result has included a significant upgrade in the facility to be fully accessible to veterans of all physical abilities, which included the March 2019 installation of Power Tees, which assists veterans’ ability to more easily take advantage of the driving range.

In recognition of his contributions to the ongoing development of the American Lake Veterans Golf Course, its contribution to the lives of our veterans, and the collective contribution that his efforts and the Course itself brings to the reputation of the game of golf, the WWGCSA is proud to present its 2020 Paul Backman Memorial Distinguished Service Award to Randy Moen.

As you would expect, Randy recognizes that he and the course have received a lot of help, saying “We could not do this without the continued support from the GCSAA, the WWGCSA, the OGCSA, Washington Rock, Turfstar Western Equipment (Toro), Ventrac and all of our great, wonderful, unselfish supporters. Thank you all for contributing to this Paul Backman Memorial Distinguished Service Award and the recognition. This award means the world to me! Thank you.”

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2019 Platinum Sponsors


Sponsor Contacts

rmteqiupment.com

Darren Fleshman
503-568-4402

Jim Hamill
206-249-6956

Sherri Hill
425-393-4221

turfstar.com

Carl Taylor
253-266-6052

Shawn Frisbee
206-501-7248

Bob Adams
360-296-8668

Ashley Burke
206-501-7252


Supplier Index


On the Move


Michael Snyder
. . .

 . . . is the new Golf Course Superintendent at the Cedars at Dungeness in Sequim as of October 14 2019. Previously, Michael was the Superintendent at Sunland Golf & Country Club, also in Sequim, for the last four years.

Abel Anderson . . .

 . . . is the new Golf Course Superintendent at Gold Mountain Golf Club as of March 2019. Previous to this, he spent 7 years as Golf Course Superintendent at Bear Mountain Golf Club in Chelan, Washington.

Marcus Harness . . .

. . . is the new Golf Course Superintendent at Sand Point Country Club. Starting at the end of August, he will be replacing Craig Sampson (CGCS) who is retiring after 30 years with the club. This off-season, Sand Point will be undergoing a full course renovation as part of its Master Plan developed by architect David McLay Kidd. Marcus has worked at multiple clubs in the area, but was most recently the Golf Course Superintendent at Sahalee Country Club under Tom Huesgen, Director of Golf Course Operations.

Ryan Rosevear . . .
. . . is the new Superintendent at Foster Golf Links. Ryan was promoted to that position on June 3 of this year after two years of grooming for the position. Curt Chandler retired after 15 years of service. Ryan previously worked for Sam Sprague at Rainier Golf & CC as an assistant superintendent.

Michael Anderson . . .
. . . is the new Equipment Manager at Foster Golf Links. Michael was formerly at Chambers Bay.


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