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With the help of the EWGA Foundation, Rose Naliaka, the only female golf professional in Kenya, is using golf to teach life lessons to girls who otherwise lead a squalid life in a country plagued by HIV and illiteracy. Naliaka and her female pupils in Kenya were the first recipients of the EWGA Foundation’s program called Drive for Dreams, which donates golf equipment and other resources. EWGA chapters, members and sponsors donated golf clubs, shoes, clothes and other items that were ready to ship to Nairobi, Kenya, just as the country erupted in political unrest. A year later, the shipment finally arrived, and Naliaka began teaching the girls with the donated golf equipment. This year’s recipient of the Drive for Dreams campaign is Renee Powell’s girls’ golf program in East Canton, Ohio. A LPGA professional, Powell is one of three African-American women to play on the LPGA Tour. For more information about the program, visit www.ewga.com.
Rain Bird Corp. is now accepting submissions for its annual Intelligent Use of Water Film Competition, a contest that uses film to increase awareness of the need for effective, efficient and responsible water use. Open to all narrative, documentary, animated or experimental short films, the contest includes a panel of judges that will award a $6,000 prize for the Jury Award and a $3,000 prize for the Audience Choice Award. Films should be 1 to 10 minutes in actual or excerpted run time and explore methods and ideas to responsibly manage and use water. This year a new award — the Green Industry Award — goes to superintendents, landscape contractors, landscape architects, specifiers and other professionals who design, install or maintain green spaces. The winner of this category will receive a $6,000 prize. Entry deadline is Aug. 15. For more information about the competition and entry requirements, visit www.iuowfilm.com.
Club Car has entered a marketing agreement with SolarDrive, a Denmark-based company that specializes in solar technology for mobile applications. The two companies will promote the use of solar energy for commercial and golf accounts in the U.S. and globally. SolarDrive designs and engineers vehicle canopies built with solar cells that can capture and transfer solar energy to electric-powered vehicles. The canopies transfer between 180 and 360 watts of energy to a vehicle’s battery system. Club Car says it hopes the availability of solar power will encourage facilities with gas-powered fleets to switch to electric vehicles.
In April the PGA of America hosted its fourth annual Free Fitting and Trade-Up Month, where participating PGA and LPGA professionals across the country gave free, 15-minute club-fitting sessions and also allowed golfers to trade in their used clubs at fair market value to apply toward new, expertly fitted clubs. The PGA Trade-In Network also provides trade-in opportunities at participating facilities throughout the year. In the three-year history of the event, the month has gained in outreach each year with an average of 3,106 PGA/LPGA professionals participating. A total of 101,200 free club fittings have been given for an annual average of 33,750. For more information about this and other Play Golf America programs, visit www.playgolfamerica.com.
The Travelers Cos. Inc. recently unveiled the results of its analysis of claims and losses that indicate the most common types of claims involved in general liability and property losses on golf courses. Fires constituted four percent of the claims but were responsible for 40 percent of the property loss costs. Second on the list of liability claims and losses were slips, trips and falls; while wind damage came in third. The most common cause of fire was from electrical deficiencies, particularly in golf car storage areas because typically there is not enough electrical capacity to handle the number of chargers used. For more information, visit www.travelers.com.
For its work at Water’s Edge Country Club, Penhook, Va., the Aspen Corp. won the Builders Legacy Award for Renovation of the Year. Architect Richard Mandell worked with Aspen and the Willard Cos. (the course owner) to update the infrastructure of the sensitive-sited course, which features many holes that border Smith Mountain Lake. Presented by Golf Course Industry, the Builder Excellence Awards recognize outstanding projects in four categories: new construction, reconstruction, renovation and environmental achievement.
Axion Golf, provider of 100 percent recycled materials for building vehicular and pedestrian bridges and other landscaping features, announces its support of the ecologically aimed partnership between its parent company, Axion International Holdings Inc., and Ecological Development LLC by scaling the platform and technology to golf projects at the local and state government levels. Ecological Development provides green retrofitting services by using software technology and green products to reduce energy consumption, decrease greenhouse gas emissions and manage a building’s impact on all environmental systems. Axion is essentially gaining access to the company’s database of contacts of government-owned or operated courses to help the courses meet building requirements in an environmentally sound manner.
A video called “The City Saves Trees from Emerald Ash Borer” made its way to the Internet recently by way of YouTube. The video, which demonstrates the successful control and treatment of emerald ash borers in Gross Pointe Farms, Mich., tells how the city identified and treated about 560 trees along boulevards and in parks and municipal areas. The pest was originally treated in 2002, and, five years later, the results showed that more than 95 percent of the trees survived. The 24-minute video was created by www.treeresearch.org.
Marriott Golf announces its second annual International Family Golf Festival program, a year-long series of one-day family golf events taking place at 31 Marriott Golf-managed properties worldwide. The festival, which started May 16, aims to encourage parents and children to learn and play golf together and invites families to Marriott Golf properties for an afternoon of free golf instruction, clinics, interactive golf games, a chance to win prizes and other activities. Last year an estimated 5,000 family participants took part in the program. Festival dates this month include June 13 in Mallorca, Spain; June 14 in Lincolnshire, Ill.; June 21 in Scottsdale, Ariz.; June 21 in Kingsport, Tenn.; June 27 in Derbyshire, United Kingdom; and June 27 in Naples, Fla.
Caterpillar Inc. and Navistar International Corp. recently signed a definitive agreement to produce Caterpillar heavy-duty vocational trucks for sale in North America and also form a 50/50 joint venture to pursue global commercial truck opportunities outside of the U.S. The venture allows both companies to serve global markets, said Daniel Ustian, president, CEO and chairman of Navistar. Markets identified for the global initiative include Australia, Brazil, China, Russia, South Africa and Turkey.
Colfax, N.C.-based Green Resource, which markets and sells fertilizer, chemicals, turfgrass seed and erosion control products for the golf and other markets, has acquired assets, equipment, inventory and 33,600 square feet of leased warehouse and office space of GroGreen Solutions LLC, Charlotte, N.C. GroGreen’s owner and all employees will join Green Resources, the company says, while the terms and conditions of the transaction were not disclosed. The move improves Green Resource’s ability to serve the southern and western region of North Carolina as well as central South Carolina.
The Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children in Orlando recently received a donation of $350,000 from Donald Trump, CEO of the Trump Organization, and Stewart Rahr, CEO of Kinray Inc. Arnold Palmer took both benefactors on a tour of the hospital and the Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies. Rahr previously donated $400,000 to the hospital through a charity event in Las Vegas, where he purchased a package that included golf with Palmer. The hospital is supported by the Arnold Palmer Medical Center Foundation, a 158-bed facility dedicated exclusively to the needs of children.
The Scotts Miracle-Gro Co. has paired with Plant a Row for the Hungry and Feeding America to provide fresh produce to the hungry this summer. The companies also are asking Americans to take the GroGood pledge, “grow a garden for the greater good.” To launch the pledge campaign, Scotts Miracle-Gro is donating 1 million pounds of produce and is calling on Americans to double that donation by pledging to grow and donate an additional 1 million pounds of fresh produce to help feed those at risk for hunger. The company is also helping to install — along with partners Keep America Beautiful, Garden Writers Association, Plant a Row for the Hungry, the National Gardening Association and Franklin Park Conservatory — community gardens in cities across the U.S. to encourage and support participation in the GroGood program. The produce grown in these gardens will be donated to local food agencies and soup kitchens. To take the pledge, learn more about how to grow an edible garden and find information on local food agencies that accept fresh produce donations, visit www.scotts.com/grogood or www.grogood.com.
LebanonTurf has named Gary Neyman as its international business manager and Tom Wentz as its northern regional sales manager. Neyman, who worked as the company’s sports turf marketing manager for the past 13 years, will develop and implement sales strategies and business plans to increase the company’s penetration in international turf markets. A 40-year veteran in the turf industry, he holds a U.S. patent with Lebanon Seaboard Corp. for a composite technology fertilizer manufacturing process. Wentz previously worked in sales management for The Scotts Co. and The Andersons, and will be responsible for sales and distribution in the Northeast and the Midwest.
Johann S. Buck, Ph.D., is the new horticulture specialist for Spectrum Technologies Inc. In the new position, Buck will consult, educate and promote research to the greenhouse and produce industries.
Ken Reeves has been named vice president of human resources for E-Z-Go, a Textron company. Reeves will be responsible for human resources strategy and will support Textron’s HR-based initiatives. The company also announces Ron Draper as its vice president of integrated supply chain. Draper will handle all aspects of the company’s manufacturing organization from procurement and component sourcing to manufacturing and delivery of vehicles. He previously worked as director of strategic sourcing for the company.
Michael Donaldson is the new president and CEO of Valent U.S.A. Corp., Valent BioSciences Corp. and the operating entities for the Americas region. In the newly created role, Donaldson will oversee both business branches plus the regions of Latin America, Mexico and Canada for parent company Sumitomo Chemical. He previously worked as president and chief operating officer for Valent BioSciences Corp.
At the 2009 Golf Industry show, Smithco presented its annual awards to distributors. The company’s North American Distributor Award of the Year went to Burris Equipment Co., Waukegan, Ill. Pictured In the magazine are: Bill Kenney, vice president of Smithco; Jay Hensley of Burris Equipment; Don Smith, Smithco president; George O’Hara of Burris Equipment; Barry Heinrichs, president of Burris Equipment; John Mamon of Burris Equipment; Jeff Churchill of Smithco; Mike Thornton of Burris Equipment; Jake Vollbeer, sales manager for Burris Equipment; Gary Huenerberg of Burris Equipment; and Mike Werth with Burris Equipment.
Tee-2-Green recently hired former superintendent Lewis Sharp to serve as its golf course consultant with primary focus in the U.S., Canada and Europe. With 20 years of experience in the turfgrass industry, Sharp, a GCSAA Superintendent Member, previously was the superintendent at Dye’s Walk Country Club, Greenwood, Ind.
Precision Laboratories recently hired David Keating as a member of its sales staff. A veteran in the fertilizer and specialty chemistry industries, Keating will assume the role of district manager for the northeastern U.S.
At the International Erosion Control Association’s conference, Profile Products LLC recognized several outstanding distributors; 18 awards total went to sales representatives and partnering companies. 2008 award winners included Tony Blatnik of JMD Co. and Bryan Whiteley with EnCana Energy for demonstrating innovation in action, the company says. JMD Co. and ACF West received the Most Outstanding Project awards for the east and west, respectively, while individual awards went to Cathy Wall of Quality Seeds, Brandon Shaw with ACF Environmental, Dean Kachur from BrettYoung, Russell Chambless of Pennington Seed, Efrain Vega from Agencias Gala and Lynn Friesner with Reed & Graham.
Woodway Country Club, a private club in Darien, Conn., opened this year for its first full season of play on the recently restored 1917 Willie Park Jr.-designed course. Mungeam Cornish Golf Design Inc. completed the improvements in the $2 million restoration to improve the consistency of strategic golf features while modernizing it for today’s standards. Mark Mungeam, lead architect on the project, used Park’s original plans plus aerial photographs to return the course to its original look and design intent. He also discovered Park’s original plans for an alternative routing that called for the construction of 20 holes with two set aside as practice holes, and used the idea to create a modern three-hole practice area.
The Hamilton Island Golf Course, a Peter Thomson-designed 18-hole course off the coast of Queensland, Australia, is scheduled to open midway through this year. A par-71 course set along neighboring Dent Island, the course features views of the Whitsunday Islands from all 18 holes. Designed by Thomson, a five-time British Open winner with more than 40 years of experience in course design, along with architect Ross Parrett, Hamilton Island GC features greens and fairways set in the undulating natural terrain of the island, which is a five-minute boat ride away from Hamilton Island.
The City of Alameda, Calif., has selected KemperSports to manage its 36-hole Chuck Corica Golf Complex located across the bay from San Francisco. The historic complex features the Early Fry Course, the Jack Clark Course and the lighted, 47-stall Bateman Driving Range. Built in 1929 by William Park Bell, the facility annually hosts the Alameda Commuters Golf Tournament, which has been played at Chuck Corica Golf Complex since 1928, when golfers commuted by ferry to San Francisco.
Perry Dye's most recent design, LykiaLinks in Antalya, Turkey, recently opened for play. Set on the shores of the Mediterranean, the course is the first of Dye's designs in the country. The links-style layout provides quilted fairways and uninterrupted views reminiscent of famous courses in Scotland. All holes feature a view of the Mediterranean and surrounding mountain peaks. The property also includes a hotel with a wellness spa and other amenities. Atilla Demirsoy is the International Superintendent Member at LykiaLinks.
The design team at Golfplan announces the grand opening of the new 18-hole course beside the Hotel Terme di Saturnia Spa & Golf Resort in Italy in the Tuscan village of Saturnia. Situated in the Fen Tuscany known for its hot springs, the 6,900-yard course is surrounded by hills of olive groves and just 30 minutes from the ocean. A challenge for the designers was working around the land, which is replete with historic artifacts as well as hot springs. The government restricted earthmoving depths to no more than 10 feet. In 2007 a storm washed away most of the grass seed and eroded many bunkers. Golfplan and the builders reprepped the ground, replanted the seed and reshaped damaged bunkers. Putting surfaces range from 6,000 to 7,000 square feet and are planted with A-4 bentgrass, while fairways and tees feature Tifway 419 bermudagrass and roughs of tall fescue.