The back nine opened officially for play on Saturday, October 22nd. A foursome of lady members followed by a foursome of men members had the honor of playing the newly renovated nine for the first time.
The prior day Jim and Gary hosted a preview opening for the many volunteers and crew who helped with the back nine renovation along with staff members of both Cedar Creek and Aiken Golf Club. Pleased to have participated, the volunteers, crew and staff unanimously agreed the Cedar Creek golf course is finer than it’s ever been and with maturity will become even better. Club members are ever grateful. More importantly, the Cedar Creek community is exceedingly fortunate to have a renewed course and revitalized club – a huge attraction for community growth and prosperity. We are indebted to Jim McNair, Jr. for the huge investment he has made not only monetarily but sweat equity and for the work greens superintendent Gary Frazier and his staff have accomplished and continue to perform.
“Rebuild it and they will come”
Work to repair the erosion and correct the drainage problem at #9 is nearing completion. Hopefully the work will resolve the horrible washout that occurred with the heavy rains this year and will prevent further issues.
The newly constructed trash receptacles in place on the back nine are courtesy of – you guessed it – lead woodworker Rich Stamm along with Art Schuenemann and Dean Spiro. The latter, by the way, was chief designer and construction specialist for the sand bottle racks now in place at the 1st and 10th tees. Look for more of their work in the future.
Seventy-six ladies and men took to the course on Friday, the 28th for the 8th annual Crystal Cup – the club’s version of the Ryder Cup. Led by Captains Louise Latsko and Dick Leach the Redcoats prevailed over Captains Cookie Caruso and Rich Stamm and the Bluejackets team. The series now stands at 5 wins for the Redcoats and 3 for the Bluejackets. Check the photos at: https://www.facebook.com/thecedarcreekgolfclub.
The course will be re-rated by the South Carolina Golf Association during November for the men’s tees. The ladies tees are scheduled to be re-rated in January by the women’s division of the SCGA. The new ratings and slopes will be entered into GHIN upon completion of each. Please note also that until the 15th fairway is opened for play next year the hole will continue to be played as a par 3 and the club policy of adding two strokes to one’s equitable gross score for handicap score postings will remain in effect.
The back nine renovation …..we’re getting there, folks, albeit not without some pain and aggravation. A second wave of army worms took to #15 in late-September and Gary went to battle again with his sprayer. Hopefully the war is won now. Regrettably the fairway will take longer to heal and grow in than before anticipated. No decision has been made yet; however, with the opening of the back nine consideration is being given to making the 15th a par 3 by installing temporary tees between the cart path and fairway in an area 100 to 150 yards from the green. Otherwise tee preparation is complete and the TifGrand sod is taking firm hold already. Bunker work is complete including replenishment with new sand. The so-called waste bunkers have yet to be tilled and smoothed. Look for the back nine to open toward the end of October.
“Rebuild it and they will come
Among the many changes Jim has made to give the back nine a new “look” is his beautification of #11. In addition to extending the irrigation system to the tee areas he has contoured and reshaped the water runoff area, placed boulders and decorative grass and sodded the entire area …. with a bit of help from Tony Loesch, too!
“Great” isn’t an adequate description for Bob and Kathy Gilliland’s complete refurbishment of the bathrooms at #15. Y’all will be amazed when you get your first look. They are spotlessly clean indoors and out as well as freshly painted and decorated top to bottom. Huge thanks to Bob and especially Kathy!
Major work will soon get underway on #9 to correct the drainage problem and repair the erosion. Cart traffic may be re-routed temporarily, but there should be no impediment to normal play.
The Crystal Cup was postponed to October 27th and 28th with the pairings party at the Grille on Thursday evening when the BlueJackets and Redcoats teams and their captains will be announced. Friday play will feature 27 holes of Ryder Cup style competition to crown the 2016 champions. Barring another setback the full 18 holes may be available for play. There are still openings – sign up at the Pro Shop.
Course renovation work was getting back on track during August with re-sprigging of the 15th and portions of the 12th and 14th fairways and then ….. another setback. A corps of army worms held a banquet on those freshly sprigged fairways and other areas of the course – the worst Gary says he has ever seen during all his years of work with turf grasses. The little devils feast on tender new leaves and practically decimated the growing TifGrand sprigs. Spraying has taken care of the army worms, but the fairways now need time and patient care to regenerate. Tee preparation and sodding was interrupted in mid-August due to another commitment by the laser-leveling crew, but they are back in action. Jim is nearing completion of bunker reconstruction and the new “look” of the back nine is taking shape. Finally, the greens have grown in nicely and are nearing playing quality.
“Rebuild it and they will come”
Are there talented craftsmen and dedicated members of the club? Have a look here. Not only did they answer the call for spriggers, but Art Schuenemann, Dean Spiro and Rich Stamm have now combined skills to construct new water cooler enclosures to replace the ones at the 12th and 14th tees. These guys are the best! And they aren’t finished yet. We’ll see more of their handiwork appear on the course in coming weeks.
And did someone mention spriggers? In addition to these three great guys, on five occasions during June, July and August crews that included Frank Beaty, Earl Bennett, Tom Brusky, Tim Burcroff, Alan Conway, Lee Covert, Bill Ely, Bill Fink, Dick Gaul, Bob Gilliland, Jack Hooke, Bill Hunkele, David Jett, Vince Jones, Don Kasper, Dave King, Bob Kistler, Ron Kolosek, Alan Kundtz, Dick Leach, Mike Lesick, Dan Long, Mike Lupfer, George Montgomery, Dave Moore, John Moynihan, Ray Naramore, Dick Neubauer, Lee Nightingale, Greg Pasco, Bill Robinson, Chuck Scarton, Ed Schneider, Bill Setter, Paul Sheiman, Phil Stack, Bill Todd, Byron Vanier, Andrew Wilson and Mike Wittkamp formed to assist Jim and Gary sprig the greens and fairways and earn points toward their greens keeper apprenticeships. Thanks to one and all!
The Couples Mixed Four-Ball Tournament on August 20th was a great event and demonstrated that couples really do play well together and notably without a single incident of partner strife! The team of Glenn and Jackie Huey paired with Phil Stack and Anne Kelty turned in a phenomenal 118 to capture first place. Joe and Meg Atkinson teamed with Andrew Wilson and Cookie Caruso for a 122 and second place. (“Par” was 144.) Meg and Glenn also pocketed closest-to-pin prizes.
The Crystal Cup is on schedule for September 15th and 16th. The pairings party for participants will be held at the Grille on Thursday evening when the BlueJackets and Redcoats teams and their captains will be announced. Friday will feature 27 holes of Ryder Cup play to crown the 2016 champions who will undoubtedly crow about their victory until next year. Openings remain – sign up at the Pro Shop.
In the interim, the Aiken City Amateur Championship will occur at The Aiken Golf Club September 9-11. This is a huge event drawing golfers from all over Aiken County. A Putting Challenge sponsored and catered by Mellow Mushroom will take place on Friday evening, the 9th, at the James M. McNair, Sr. Memorial Putting Course followed by two rounds of medal play on Saturday and Sunday. The tournament features four divisions – ladies along with regular, senior and super senior divisions for men with a tee award, snacks, lunch on Sunday and gross and net prizes all around. Event details and registration form are available at Cedar Creek Golf Club and The Aiken Golf Club or at http://www.aikengolfclub.net and click on City Amateur Championship. Entries close on Sunday, September 4th.
While you’re registering for the City Am check out the remainder of the newly designed and constructed web page courtesy of Julia. By the way, 19 Grille is a great place for a casual lunch.
The back nine renovation is coming along as well as can be expected in spite of the elements. The brutal heat requires Gary give careful attention to irrigation particularly on the new greens. Preparation of the new tees and installation of base material has been completed with laser-leveling scheduled to begin on August 1st followed by sodding. Newly designed green tees will appear on #11, #12, #13, #15, #17 and #18. A new concrete cart path for re-routing of cart traffic has been completed near the red tee at #12 and another is being installed at #11. Bunker work will follow in due course.
#11 Cart Path
Pssst ……have you noticed how well the front nine is being maintained including repair of the 1st and 7th greens? Is there an “Attaboy!” out there for Gary and his crew?
“Rebuild it and they will come”
The Cedar Creek and The Aiken Golf Club Mixed Four-Ball Tournament – the first of its kind – will be held on August 20th. The event will be played as two couples per team with two low net scores recorded for each team – one score from each couple. This tournament will surely bring out the best in couples play.
Looking ahead – and mark your calendars – the Crystal Cup is scheduled for September 15th and 16th with the pairings party on Thursday evening (the 15th) and competition on Friday. Always a great event with the Redcoats squaring off against the Bluejackets and huge bragging rights at stake.
Speaking of great events, the Aiken City Amateur Golf Championship will be held September 9-11. The City Am draws over 100 every year with golfers competing in regular, senior, super senior and women’s divisions. Practice rounds may be played on Friday, the 9th, with an evening putting challenge at the James M. McNair, Sr. memorial putting course hosted by and food provided courtesy of Mellow Mushroom. The tournament comprises two rounds of medal play on Saturday and Sunday with players flighted following Saturday’s round. Snacks, Sunday lunch and prizes galore are included. Brochures with full details and registration form are available at the Pro Shop and at:
Have you been to the Grille lately? Besides the regular excellent fare every Wednesday evening is Italian Night. With a chef whose name is DelSignore can it be anything but good?
The Aiken Golf Club senior and super senior champions were crowned during July. Bill Beck defended his senior championship title with a two-day total of 145. John Ebenroth claimed the super senior title with 148. Jim Costigan posted the low net for the seniors with a 130, and Dan Gable took the super senior low net at 133.
Great progress is being made on the back nine renovation. It’s amazing the work Jim and Gary and their crew have accomplished in a mere 6 weeks. All of the greens were re-shaped to remove severe slopes and widen approaches. Several green-side bunkers were removed most notably at #18. The outlines of other bunkers have been defined with more to be done in coming weeks, and all of the new bunkers will be faced with sod to produce the same appearance as the front nine. Fairway tilling and removal of the old Bermuda grass has been completed. All fairways except #12 retain their original design. The 12th fairway has undergone a major change and the mounds at the approach to #13 were leveled. Finally, preliminary work has begun on the tees in preparation for their laser-leveling and sodding.
All the greens were sprigged with Miniverde (Ultra Dwarf) Bermuda on June 27th. Sprigging of the fairways with TifGrand Bermuda has begun and will be completed in very early July. (Huge thanks to all the Men’s Golf Association members who are applying their course reconstruction skills to complete the sprigging and earning greens keeper apprenticeship credits!) We’ll see a lot of new green on both greens and fairways in a couple of weeks.
“Rebuild it and they will come”
Have you been by the Grille lately? In addition to their excellent standard fare Michael and Andrea are offering specials every week as well as Happy Hour 3 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Check it out at:
Got a birthday or other gift occasion coming up? Did you know the pro shop offers a wide array of merchandise suitable not only for golfers but others who would like to proudly wear and display the Cedar Creek logo? And if it’s not in stock Julia can special order it!
The Aiken Golf Club Senior and Super Senior Club Championships for men are scheduled for Friday and Saturday, July 15th and 16th. With dual memberships all active members of both The Aiken Golf Club and Cedar Creek Golf Club are eligible to compete. Seniors 55 or older will play from the mid tees. Super seniors 70 and over will play the fore tees. Those 70 and over may “step down” and play for the senior championship. Registration is open at The Aiken Golf Club.
Cedar Creek was again host to the annual Hook A Kid on Golf program the last week of June. Organized and directed by Joe Spencer of the Aiken Junior Sports Association, 2016 marks the program’s 15th year. Due to another commitment during the Cedar Creek program week Larry Peyser who has assisted and helped manage the program for many years stood in for Joe. Locally organized by Mike D. with the professional assistance of Kenny E. and the volunteer expertise of many Cedar Creek members 34 young guys and gals were introduced to the joys of the game and the promise of many years of enjoyable golf ahead.
Work is well underway on the back nine renovation. Turf from all the old greens and green surrounds has been removed and grading and installation of base material in preparation for new turf has begun. Changes to the greens will be both subtle and dramatic. The 18th green, for example, is undergoing a major re-design with lowering of it by about four feet and removal of the old bunkers. Other greens will be “softened” somewhat with expanded approaches to be more player friendly. Bunkers will be re-shaped in some instances. Sprigging of the new greens with Miniverde (Ultra Dwarf) Bermuda – exactly the same as the front nine greens – will be done following installation of sod on the green surrounds. Work will them progress to rebuilding the tees and tilling the fairways in preparation for sprigging with TifGrand.
“Rebuild it and they will come”
We again ask that walkers refrain from using the back nine for their daily travels no matter the time of day. Heavy equipment will be in use at times; it will be awfully dusty and dirty; and chemicals may be applied at times.
Changes to playing arrangements and times have been necessary to accommodate group play and allow for Gary and his crew to perform course maintenance on the front nine. Mike D. is making every effort to both get groups on the course and maintain a schedule for open play with the least amount of conflict. Bear with us – better days (much better days!) – are ahead.
The 2016 Community Golf Scramble in conjunction with Cedar Creek Living was again a rousing success. Many kudos to Morgan Calhoun and the CC Living staff for arranging sponsorships along with raffle awards; Michael and Andrea DelSignore and their staff for both the pre-round pastries, juice and coffee as well as sumptuous hors d’oeuvres at the turn; the Pot Smokers BBQ for delicious sandwiches and sides; and especially Mike D. and the pro shop staff for tournament arrangements. Joe Souza, Tom Brusky, Lee Nightingale and Bill Egge captured gross honors with a 58 while the team net award using the DiPasquale Scoring System went to Dennis Raith, Jim Padgett, Harry Goldthorpe and David Jett with a 57.
The Men’s Golf Association is a proud sponsor of the Silver Bluff High School golf team. An annual donation is made to offset team expenses and members of the MGA often donate equipment to benefit the team and promote golf among aspiring middle and high school golfers. The MGA also hosts Coach Brad Johnson and team members pairing them with MGA members for an end-of-year tournament and post-round burgers at Cedar Creek. Our May event this year resulted in a tie between Silver Bluff’s Camden Kinard playing with Rob Rosche and Silver Bluff’s Jacob Barton playing with Ray Naramore. A “putt-off” was necessary to determine the winner of the 2016 SB-CC Championship trophy. Jacob, a freshman who had a hot hand with his putter during the round, took home the honor.
L to R: CJ Holtsizer, Michael Johnson, Braylon Floyd, Coach Brad Johnson, Jeremiah Howard,
Camden Kinard, Logan Brock, Jacob Barton
Joining the Silver Bluff team members in addition to Ray and Rob were Don Kasper, Dick Leach, Ben Peppard, Ken Sabol, Dean Spiro, Bill Todd, Byron Vanier and Dean Wood.
Plans remain intact for the back nine renovation beginning May 16th. Led by Jim, of course, Gary and the crew along with a few augmentees will be hard at work through the hot summer. A staging area for materials will be established between the 1st and 18th fairways along with another in the region of #12 well away from any homes. Dramatic changes are in store!
“Rebuild it and they will come”
Playing arrangements and times for the front nine this year will be similar to those employed for play of the back nine last year. Groups will play at their usual times with no tee times allocated between 10 a.m. and noon. More info to follow ………
There have been numerous queries regarding the annual range plan offered at both Cedar Creek and The Aiken Golf Club. There’s no better time than now for the casual golfer to avail him- or herself of this opportunity particularly with warm weather summer and good golfing months ahead. The plan offers not only unlimited use of the club’s driving range and practice facility but two rounds of golf per month at either Cedar Creek or The Aiken Golf Club with only cart fees. Stop by the pro shop and get yours! Encourage your friends to do likewise. Many charity events are held at Cedar Creek during the course of the year. One in particular stands out. Art Sotak is father of the “Standing Up For Our Veterans” tournament that he conducts – April 2016 being the 8th annual. Sponsored by the Knights of Columbus Assembly1074 the event benefits the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center in Augusta. Art and hiscompatriots use the proceeds from the tournament for the Veterans Outreach Program at Charlie Norwood during their twice monthly visits. The event was won this year by a team from Woodside Plantation (Dick Korzen, Jerry McAleece, Don McChesney and Jack Mullin) whose
bragging rights are secondary to the real winners – Charlie Norwood veterans. Art extends a heartfelt thanks to all who participated and others who contributed to “Standing Up For Our Veterans.”
The final event on the new-old course, which is to say before the back nine closes for renovation,
will be the Community Golf Scramble in conjunction with Cedar Creek Living on Saturday, May 14th. Although the field is full – sold out in a matter of hours, in fact – the alternate list remains open. In the event of cancellations alternates in their order of signup will join the field. Stop by the pro shop to enter your name on the alternate list.
With anticipation growing over renovation of the back nine, here are a couple pictures of perfection ….. as are all the new greens ……
“Rebuild it and they will come”
The fountain at #3 is back in operation …….
Gary can fix anything!
Preparations have begun for renovation of the back nine. Irrigation control valves are being located, checked and refurbished as necessary. Sprinkler heads are being tested for proper operation. In early-April the fairways will be sprayed to eliminate existing turf followed by a second treatment three weeks following. The applications are required to be completed for the chemical to dissipate in advance of tilling and installment of the TifGrand Bermuda.
Look for the front nine greens to be aerified on or about May 2nd. The front nine will be closed for one day. Are Gary and his crew busy? You betcha! And meet the new guy on Gary’s crew:
As was announced in Cedar Creek Living magazine, the community golf scramble returns on Saturday, May 14th. Registration will commence on Wednesday, April 13th, at the pro shop with openings for 84 golfers and will close on May 7th. Payment -- $40 per golfer – will be due at the time of registration. Players may sign up as four-person teams or as individuals the latter to be paired by the tournament committee. There will be an alternate list in order of signup following the first 84.
The Grille at Cedar Creek has a new web page. Check it out and note the many specials in addition to Michael and Andrea’s outstanding menu:
Speaking of which, when next you’re at The Aiken Golf Club stop by 19 Grill. Excellent fare!
The pro shop is newly stocked with spring and summer merchandise. Special orders may be made as well. See Julia!
With the coming of March the green, green grass of summer will soon be showing. Spring maintenance and preparations for the summer season have begun. Along with cleanup – an on-going endeavor – Gary and his crew are applying pre-emergent and post-emergent to eliminate the current crop of weeks and to protect the course from summer weed invasion. Mulching projects will continue during the month. In preparation for the back nine renovation irrigation isolation valves are being located and replaced. What with the amount of rain we’ve had wet conditions persist throughout the course.
“Rebuild it and they will come
The Cedar Creek 4-club tournament brought out the best and the worst among us. There were good scores as evidenced by those in the winners’ circle and – dare we say it? – really bad scores. Of course we won’t mention names, but don’t you know word gets around! Dave King took home first place in the men’s division with a net 64 and Ann-Marie Cox placed first among the ladies with a net 70. Judging by the winners’ scores it appears some are playing day-to-day with more clubs than necessary.
The Aiken Golf Club cross-country tournament in early February was an event unlike any other. To play from one teeing ground to the green of the next hole offers quite the challenge – something like “over hill and dale” with a few trees and sand traps along the way to make it troublesome. Interestingly three teams tied for the low score, which necessitated a scorecard playoff. The Aiken Golf Club team of Bill Adams, Robert Royer, Chuck Campbell and Roy Jordan emerged as the first place winners. They were followed by Cedar Creek’s Andrew Wilson and Mike Lupfer who were paired with AGC’s Jay McDermott and Walt Bagwell. Art Schuenemann of Cedar Creek joined AGC’s Dan Skiff, Ken Knox and Dave Smith in third place.
The ladies will soon kick off their 2016 seasons. As has already been announced, the Cedar Creek Women’s Golf Association 18-hole group will hold its opening day on Thursday, March 3rd, with a 9-hole scramble followed by lunch at the Cedar Creek Grille provided by new grille operators Michael and Andrea Del Signore. All ladies with an established handicap or in the process of establishing a handicap are welcome to join the group’s regular Thursday morning play. Donna Imbrescia (644-8213, email: email@example.com) and Connie Beveridge (644-4008, email: firstname.lastname@example.org) are the membership chairs.
The Cedar Creek Niner Ladies will hold their Annual Kick-Off Breakfast for the 2016 season on Monday, March 14th, followed by their regular Monday 9-hole game. The group is open to all ladies and having a handicap is not required. To find out more about the group and the kick-off breakfast contact Janet Koertge at Janet@waltkoertge.com. Check out their blog also at: http://www.cedarcreek9.blogspot.com.
The very popular Cedar Creek Mixed Scramble will be played on March 26th …..watch for the official announcement.
Course maintenance has slowed for obvious reasons. Fairways and roughs are dormant and
don’t require mowing. The front nine greens and aprons are cut when warranted, which won’t be
often. In spite of weather vagaries among other factors the back nine greens are still in reasonably good condition and won’t require as much attention. Bunkers and waste areas are treated as required. Finally, given the frequency of rain and wet conditions throughout the course we must remain mindful of cart restrictions.
“Rebuild it and they will come”
This is the time of year when Gary and his crew catch up on course equipment maintenance in
preparation for the coming growing season. One might be surprised by the variety of equipment
in use and the task it is to maintain it. Much of it is like automobile service such as changing and
replenishing filters and fluids and checking belts and tires, but there is more. Mower blades are
sharpened, rollers replaced and hydraulics are checked for proper operation. Sand and fertilizer
spreaders are thoroughly cleaned. And parts on all equipment are examined for likely failure and
replaced as necessary.
Final check of the sand spreader
We are fortunate that Jim has replaced nearly all equipment and added several new pieces over the past three years to make course maintenance more efficient. That Gary, Robbie, Ted and Jake augmented by a couple summer hires with additional help from volunteers Frank and Bill can maintain over 160 acres of turf including greens, tees and fairways as well as bunkers and other
features of the course is testament to the outstanding job they do.
Have you looked in on CCGC’s Facebook page lately? Check it out at:
The Men’s Golf Association Par 3 tournament results are posted at:
For the ladies Gail Sheiman took low net along with closest to the pin honors at hole #5. She was followed by Ann Marie Cox second low net and Donna Imbrescia third low net.
Just a day or two remaining to join the Cross-County Scramble at The Aiken Golf Club on Saturday, February 6th. Call (649-6029) or sign up at TAGC. For a challenge like none other get in on the fun of this event. We’ll also enjoy lunch at the newly remodeled Legends Grill.
We’ve added a tournament – a four-club event – on February 27th. Details to follow …..
The Grille will be under new management effective March 1st. Further news forthcoming …..
Looking forward to warmer weather ………