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Birch Ridge Report: Sun means more weeks of quality turf

Posted: May 15, 2014 - 10:46pm

The golf scene here in sunny San Diego has been wonderful for the past week. Oh wait … we’re not in San Diego? This is still Soldotna, Alaska? I don’t believe it! As my midseason form golf tan lines would tell you the weather and golf has been fantastic.

Birch Ridge opened for play on April 25, a full 17 days ahead of our opening day last season. The early start allowed Bill “The Thrill” Engberg and his merry band of grass aficionados to work the greens earlier than ever. What does that mean for our golfers? It means we’re going to steal three extra weeks of prime turf conditions this summer!

That’s not to say the golf isn’t pleasant now, it’s great for this time of year, so I encourage you to knock the winter rust off your golf swing in the spring so you can enjoy the wonderful turf conditions we anticipate having this summer.

I’ve been amazed at all the new golfers coming out to play this season. I thought I knew every golfer in town but obviously that’s not the case. Of course, not every new golfer understands the ins and outs of golf course etiquette and that can lead to some unfortunate situations. We encourage everyone to participate in helping these new golfers get acclimated to the golf course environment.

Driving golf carts on the tee boxes or greens is just unacceptable. Carts on these closely mown areas of the golf course can cause incredible damage that is not easily repaired. Push carts and golf bags should also stay off the putting surface.

If you see golfers making a poor decision on the course, politely show them the proper behavior or report the incident to an employee. Our first, second, and third priority is providing our golfers with the best possible playing conditions we can achieve each summer.

We want all of our golfers to enjoy Birch Ridge. You certainly don’t have to be a highly skilled player or experienced to enjoy the game but we ask that everyone golfs responsibly.

Junior Camps at Birch Ridge Golf Course

The miniature duffers will be out for Hook-a-Kid week May 27 to 31. The Birch Ridge Golf Association Junior Camp will be held June 9 to 13. Applications are available in the pro shop or you can visit www.birchridgegolf.com and download the application. The BRGA Junior Golf Championship Tournament will take place the following week on June 19.

The junior golf scene at Birch Ridge is quickly becoming very attractive to our area youngsters. The Alaska Junior Golf Association has awarded Birch Ridge with an opportunity to host the Alaska Junior Open this summer. Next summer Birch Ridge is hosting the Alaska Junior State Championship.

Miniature duffers that participate in the BRGA junior camp can play golf for free on Thursdays all summer! Bill “The Thrill” Engberg runs a tournament preparatory program for juniors whose skill level is nearing or at a competitive level.

We also offer individual private instruction for juniors seeking to improve their scores. Birch Ridge is great place for kids to be outside (away from video games!) learning a game they can play their entire lives.

Tuesday Morning Ladies League

Ladies league play will begin at 10 a.m. Tuesday. If you’re a dazzling dame that loves to strut your golf swing around town Tuesday morning at Birch Ridge is the place to be. Tuesday is also my birthday so if you bring baked goods you can deduct two strokes from your overall score that morning. That’s a temporary local rule I just implemented.

Thursday Night Couples

Couples Night has traditionally been held on Tuesday evenings, but we’ve decided to hold the outing on Thursdays this summer. If you and your significant other love to golf, Couples Night is a great way to get out and enjoy the goofier side of the game together.

We create wild and wacky formats to test a golfer’s patience and sense of humor each week, but don’t worry, to this point not a single divorce has been caused by Couples Night golf!

You do not need a handicap (a handicap is your personal golf skill rating, not your husband’s intelligence) to participate, but an official handicap is required to win prizes. Play is concluded with a round of adult beverages and dinner provided by the golf course and Couples Night participants. For more information please contact the pro-shop at 262-5270.

Golf Joke of the Week

What does a Seattle Seahawks fan say after winning the Super Bowl? “When does the second half start!?” That’s not a golf joke … I just couldn’t help myself.

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