Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Is He Back...???


Torrey Pines Golf Club has hosted numerous tournaments over the years and has been a place where Tiger Woods has been successful eight times.  The tournament that took place over the past weekend was to some maybe not as exciting as others with Tiger Woods performing beautifully and then blowing up.  However, my take on the tournament was Tiger is human he makes mistakes like any regular golfer he takes doubles and he makes back to back birdies.  What I enjoyed most about it was feeling better about my own game and knowing that a double bogie does not mean I am out of reach for the win.  Some of his dramatic dropping of the driver is questionable and can be seen as childish.  For all you children that read my blog please note that throwing or dropping the golf club is not proper etiquette. 
The question remains is this Tiger Woods year? As a big Tiger Woods fan I hope he is successful I want him to do well because he has done so much for the game of golf.  Personal issues aside, we cannot fault one for his indiscretions.  We can only comment on his golf game.  Tigers passion for the game of golf is evident with every swing he takes.  He has an ability to block out bystanders and commit to every shot.  Whether you are a Tiger fan or not you have to admit his short game is back.  Some of those wedge shots were like the good ole days when Tiger took no prisoners on the golf course.   With so many ups and downs this weekend with his golf game I can only assume he must be exhausted.  With 23 days off from competitive golf his return to the Match Play Championship will defiantly be hyped up.
When asked about Major Championships his response was:
“It’s getting up-and-down at major championships,” Woods said. “You’re not going to hit the ball great every day. They’re the most difficult situations and most difficult setups that we face. You’re going to have to make a tough up-and-down, and I wasn’t doing that. Consequently, those 74s and 75s should have been 70s or 71s. And that’s how you win those tournaments.”
An interesting fact with the win at Torrey Pines that puts his total to 75 wins in his professional career moving him into second place of all time.  Stay tuned to future blog posts on who is ranked number 1 and who did Tiger bypass for second. 

Monday, 28 January 2013

Economic Impact of Golf...

In 2009 the National Allied Golf Association (NAGA) did a study on the “Economic Impact of Golf in Canada.”  They concluded the following results:


 An estimated $11.3 billion of Canada’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which is broken down by:

  • 341,794 jobs;

  • $7.6 billion in household income;

  • $1.2 billion in property and other indirect taxes, and;

  • $1.8 billion in income taxes.

 The game of golf in Canada generates an approximate $29.4 billion in total gross production through direct, indirect, and induced spending impacts.

Canmore Golf Club, Alberta

What I find very interesting is the statistics made that of the $13.6 billion that the Canadian Golf Industry brings in with direct economic activity golf courses and their facilities including privately owned driving ranges and practice ranges totals $4.7 billion.  The fact that makes me proud to be in the golf industry is that we are in close to beating all other participation sports and recreation facilities combined with their total being $4.8 billion.

In the year of 2008 it has been estimated that 70 million rounds of golf were played in Canada.  “According to IPSOS Reid, there are an estimated 6 million Canadian golfers.   According to RCGA sources, Canadian golf participation rates are among the highest in the world.”

Any seasoned golfer has played in numerous charity events and the NAGA report states: “Each year there are at least 25,000 charitable events hosted at Canadian courses. Using conservative estimates, these events raise more than $439 million for charitable causes across Canada.”

Cobble Beach, Owen Sound, Ontario


We have all heard the term “Snow Birds” in the golf industry those who fly south for the winter to keep their golf game sharp.  However, there are lots of Canadians that are playing within our country.  An estimated $1.9 billion is spent annually on golf-related travel within our beautiful country.   

Thank you to the NAGA and SNG for reporting such important news on the game of golf.  We only hope that we can continue to grow such a popular game one that can be played at all ages and skill levels.


Thursday, 24 January 2013

Lawn Mowers Through the Decades...

The complete foundation of golf is based on the fact that you play it outside on grass.  Now grass has been cut with a variety of machines over the years.  This post is going to take you through time...

Greens Master Light Motor Mower
The two stroke Light Atco motor mower from the 1950s was available in 14", 17" and 20" cutting widths. This image is from the company's 1953 brochure.

Second design of Atco rotary mower with petrol tank mounted in the handles.

Let it be known that  I am beyond happy that I am using the current model of a lawnmower and not that tiny thing from the 1920s.

Monday, 21 January 2013

2013 PGA Merchandise Show...

The PGA Merchandise Show date back to 1953 and has changed significantly with the decades into a comprehensive multi-purpose business platform.  There are over 1000 vendors that represent every business sector of golf from market leaders to start-up companies, golf industry leaders will address key issues; attend timely education seminars and share relevant best practices. There will be more than 40,000 industry professionals from around the world to the industry's annual global summit for the business of golf.
Nike has recently released that they have signed a three year contract with the PGA show. Mike Francis who is the U.S. General Manager for Nike Golf states: "The PGA Merchandise Show is the perfect platform to present our innovative products to PGA Professionals, retailers and media.  We have a strong partnership with the PGA of America and its members and look forward to sharing with them our newest and most innovative club line to date, the Nike VR_S Covert. With a powerful product line up and a strong athlete roster, we will continue to amplify Nike Golf's exciting momentum at the PGA Show."
Photo's from 2012 PGA Show
I am so excited for this show as I have never had the opportunity to attend before. If your going to one show this is the show to take in, every company that Sunset does business will be here and more.  I will come back with the latest and greatest technology, style, and trends for 2013.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

LPGA Fashion Misses...

I’m all for fashion forward and being unique, but when that unique is actually ugliness and pokes fun at the history of golf fashion I have a problem.  The following are some of the biggest fashion misses seen on the LPGA....
What were these ladies thinking.  Their outfits are cute but those knee socks are not meant for the golf course.
What was she thinking????
Photo detail
Flash back to 1997...oppps
Hee Young Park...where are the rest of your shorts???

Monday, 14 January 2013

Mr. Ryan Moore...

New up and coming professional golfers are what the game of golf is all about.  One to look for in the 2013 season is American Ryan Moore. 

Ryan was born in Tacoma, Washington on December 5th 1982.  After completing High School Ryan accepted a scholarship to UNLV, where he lettered in all four seasons for the Rebels and graduated in 2005.  Ryan’s degree was in communications and public relations.

Moore is known for his success as an Amateur which includes:  U.S. Amateur, the Western Amateur, the U.S. Amateur Public Links (also won in 2002) and the NCAA individual championship.  Moore won the Haskins Award in 2005 which is the award for outstanding collegiate golfer in the nation. He placed 13th at the 2005 Masters, winning low amateur.  Ryan turned pro and worked his way up the payroll and world ranking.
Fast forward to 2010, where Moore had a very successful year with six top-10 finishes. On the PGA’s Tour money list he was 32nd with earnings of $2,374,823.  Fed Ex Cup standings he ranked 21st , world ranking he placed 42nd in the FedEx Cup Standings, and 45th in the world rankings.

At the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospital tournament in October 2012, Moore won for the second time on the PGA Tour.  In 2012 Moore brought in $2,858,944.
Moore is now proud to be officially part of the “Adams Golf” Team. Ryan does not feel that it is necessary to have contracts and chooses his clubs based on what works for his game.  Before signing a contract with Adams he used their product for two years. 

Interesting statistic is: “The driver statistics alone from playing Adams in the last 2 years have been astounding enough (he spent most of the last 2 years in the top 5 in total driving: distance and accuracy combined).”

Monday, 7 January 2013

Interview with the one and only Kevin Graf....

I know for a fact that while you read the following interview you will not only learn something but you will get a few chuckles along the way.  Kevin and I met in College in Barrie where we were both studying Professional Golf Course Management.  We became instant friends and helped each other through College.  Kevin is currently Head Professional and Tournament Director out in Alberta at a fabulous Golf Course called The Links of Glen Eagles.  I am so proud of how far he has come and his commitment to the game of golf.  I hope you enjoy the following interview as much as I did.

What made you choose to be in the Golf Industry?
Golf has always been a passion of mine since I was young. When I researched the golf program during high school I was instantly sold because it meant that I got to pursue a career doing something that I knew I loved. One of the best things about working in the golf industry is waking up every morning and being excited to go to work.

What was your favourite class in College / University?
I attended “The Last Class” campus bar a lot so that was one of my favorites. However, if we’re talking education, I would have to say that the Introduction to the Golf Swing class interested me the most. Since my first year in college my passion in the golf industry had been teaching so that class provided me with a lot of useful information that I was able to take with me and use during my lessons.

What was the best advice you were given for your golf game?
I got an idea from a friend that I currently use and it seems to help and lighten my mood after hitting a bad shot. He told me to attach a baby soother to my golf bag, and every time I hit a bad shot to touch the soother. The reason is to remind myself not to be a baby and to suck it up and recover on the next shot! I find it hard not to smile after a bad shot when I go over to my bag and touch my soother!

What is your favourite putting drill?
My favorite putting drill is very simple. With a playing partner and 1 ball each, set up at a two holes, preferably around 20 feet apart. Each player putts to the others hole until one player makes the putt, every time a putt is made you switch sides. I usually play until 1 person gets to 5-10 putts made. It’s a fun game to play against another person and because you’re so focused on the score, you work on things that you don’t even think about like hitting your line, and judging the speed of the putt. When you’re finding two holes to play this game on, try finding an area where one putt is downhill, and one is uphill.

Has it been difficult growing in an industry so dominated by men?
I think it’s definitely been tough for sure. Golf is such a social sport which makes it fun for anyone. It has definitely been dominated by men and is still the case now, however, we’re starting to see the ratio between men and women golfers grow closer. Do I think that ratio will ever become even? Probably not, but each year I am starting to see more and more female golfers which is great. Even from a teaching perspective, I have taught more female golfers each year. To be honest, I enjoy teaching women a little bit more because, well, they listen ;).

What was your best golf experience thus far?
I would have to say my best golf experience was when I successfully passed my Playing Ability Test and got my pro card with my dad caddying for me. My dad has been a big influence on my life and my golf game so to have him there with me when I achieved that was pretty special. 

What is your favourite golf course and why?
I have a few favorites but out of all the courses that I have played, Greywolf in Invermere, British Columbia would probably be my favorite. Pebble beach is easily a favorite that I haven’t played yet.


What do you feel are the benefits of playing a Par 3 Executive Golf Course?
I think the best thing about par 3 executive courses is the fact that anyone can play them. They are shorter which allows juniors and beginners the opportunity to practice and get comfortable with the game before making the jump to a full course. It also gives the more skilled or experienced players a chance to work specifically on their iron play.

Who is your favourite player on the PGA?
Tiger Woods has always been my favorite. I saw him play in the 1996 Bell Canadian Open when I was 7, the next year I started golfing. His GOLF GAME has always been an inspiration to me.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In 5 years, I hope to still be with the course I am currently working at. By then, maybe as the Director of Golf. I have been fortunate to achieve the Head Golf Professional position at such an early age, and I will continue to work hard to further my career.

What is your favourite golf brand?
Working at a Nike exclusive golf course for the past 5 years, if I said anything but Nike I might lose my job! Not to take anything away from Nike though, the technology they have put in to their clubs over the past few years has been incredible and I’ve always been a big fan of their clothing lines. I am very exciting to play the new woods that they’ve released for 2013; red is the new black ;)

What Club has been in your bag the longest?
I have had a 7-wood in my bag since I was 12. Although the actual make and model of the club has changed over the years, a 7-wood has always been in there. It’s just been one of those clubs that seems to get me out of trouble when I get into it, and trust me; when there is trouble on the golf course, I seem to have no problem finding it. So the club has come in handy quite a bit.

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Welcome to my blog...

Hello Everyone,

The creation of this blog came to me at the N.G.C.O.A (National Golf Course Owner’s Assossiation) Conference at Deerhurst Resort in Muskoka.  I was sitting through a seminar on social media and of course we were being informed of how powerful Facebook and Twitter to our Golf Courses.  Blogs were brought up briefly basically long enough to show us how they work. 

I want to take this blog to the next level instead of focusing solely on the media of the professional golf world like so many other blogs available. I want to focus on: Beginner Golfers, Turf Management, Fitness/ Health, Player Profiles of both Pros and members at the Goderich Sunset Golf Club and Fashion Sense.   This blog will be a safe place for new golfers to come and learn about the game of golf in hopes that you one day fell comfortable enough to come out to the course.  It is also for those familiar with the sport by focusing on the health benefits, fill you in on all things turf related and keep you up to date on all the up and coming golf professionals making their way up the leader board at P.G.A events.

Having said that I should probably tell you a little bit about me.  My name is Ashley Gravett and I have been working in the Golf Industry for 11 years.   I started in the back shop at Saugeen Golf Club in Port Elgin, Ontario.  A year later my family purchased the Goderich Sunset Golf Club and I became a full time Pro Shop attendee over night.  This was a lot different than my daily jobs from the previous summer.  Over the years I graduated from back shop to Pro Shop and with that came Halfway House, tournaments, junior clinics, and waitressing.  Now 10 years later I’m a part of everything Sunset whether that is running leagues, food and beverage, lessons, junior golf, tournaments, Pro Shop and more.

I want to make this blog as interactive as I can so if you have any topics you want me to do a post on please e-mail me at and I will do my best to get back to you.

I want to take this time to thank everyone who has helped me with idea's to get this blog up and running.  A lot of the beginner posts come from ladies who haven’t taken up the game of golf and their reasoning.  I have taken their questions and concerns and made posts specifically addressing each of their reasons.  I only hope that this blog will help you see that there is more to golf then just hitting a white ball around a beautiful setting.