MEDINAH READIES FOR BMW CHAMPIONSHIP

 THE SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB a year round golf facility. The simulators are open indoors for the upcoming cold weather months. The Baer Nine is rolling through it’s renovation, and is expected to open around July 1st next summer. The Players Nine reopened to rave reviews this summer and 18 outdoor holes remain open for play. The club is home to Chandlers Chophouse for food and beverage. SchaumburgGolf.com.

Click here to hear more about the Schaumburg Golf Clubs renovation of all 27 holes.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy, Facebook, Linkedin. With Peakvision Sunglasses peakvision.com

2019 won’t leave the Chicago area with all the top level golf tournaments it has hosted in the last two years, but it will have it’s own major PGA Tour event.

The BMW Championship returns to the Chicago area when it visits Medinah Country Club in Mid-August. This will be the first big golf tournament at Medinah since the Ryder Cup in 2012,  and it’s been many more years since the PGA Tour has visited the club. In fact, it’s been since 1966 when Billy Casper won the third Western Open contested at Medinah, when the PGA Tour last came to golf on Course #3.

The par 3, 13th hole on Medinah’s #3 course is ready for the BMW Championship.

With the PGA Tour schedule changing in 2019, the shuffle of dates for several tournaments will take place.

The Players Championship moves back into the month of March, and the PGA Championship moves from August and forward into May. As a result, the Fed Ex Cup Playoffs have fully moved up into the month of August so they conclude before the NFL season begins. The new August dates for the BMW Championship will have the championship being played before kids return to school, and the weather is expected to be nicer than some of the cooler weeks the BMW has played through in the Chicago area, during the month of September.

The par 4, 5th hole on Medinah Course #3, show’s off the new sand from the clubs bunker renovation program.

While Medinah has renovated or done restoration work on all three of it’s courses over the last decade, there wasn’t much to be done on Course #3 in advance of the BMW.

But that didn’t stop the club from doing a bunker renovation over this past season. No bunkers were taken out, none were added, none of them were moved in preparation for the arrival of the big hitters. All of the popular white tour style sand was replaced, with new bunker liners being added. Drainage in the bunkers was checked or improved where needed. A few bunker faces were redone and bunker edges were cut, trimmed or reshaped. If any other minor work is needed, or requested by the PGA Tour, it will done next summer.

 Medinah’s new Performance Center on the practice range comes with all the comfort’s of home, and some new simulators. The clubs teaching professionals Travis Johns, Rich Dukelow and Sean McLeod have all the tools and technology needed to handle the needs of the clubs membership. While the touring professionals can use the clubs regular practice area during BMW week if needed, the main range for practice will be parts of holes 12 and 13 on Course #1, in between the main driveway and Medinah Road. It will give the players a short walk to the first tee when they complete warming up, and spectators can watch the players on the range while being close to the 18th green and first tee box.

The new food truck moves around the club to all facilities on the property.

As part of Medinah’s 2020 program, the club continues to enhance all of it’s facilities. The first phase of work on it’s three golf courses came before the 2012 Ryder Cup on Course #3 by Rees Jones. Phase two was the renovation of Course #1 that started the morning after the Ryder Cup ended, and was done by Tom Doak. The last piece of course restoration was done in 2016 and 2017 on Course #2, when Jones along with the clubs former Director of Grounds Curtis Tyrell came up with a user friendly plan that has both the membership and it’s guests excited about playing the golf course. Seven sets of tee’s and new playing options around the greens, have made Course #2 so enjoyable to play that many of the clubs male members are flocking to the course that years ago was called the “women’s course.” Having all three courses up and running has allowed the clubs large membership to have no problems in getting tee times, when they wish to tee it up.

Medinah’s new trophy wall contains replica’s of the trophies from the major golf events the club has hosted over the years.

Medinah’s 2020 program has been more than just improving it’s golf courses and it’s practice and lesson area’s. It has been a top to bottom overhaul of the entire club.

The pool area and building has been rebuilt, the tennis and paddle ball courts have been redone with a new full sized building that is similar to the building that was created by the driving range.

It’s golf and club history has been restored and put on display in various area’s of the clubhouse. The locker rooms have been repainted. The dining area’s have been upgraded, along with upstairs bar and the dining area that overlooks Courses 2&3. The clubs facilities around the property can have food and beverage services enhanced with the clubs new food truck that can roam the clubs grounds and be placed where needed on any given day. All of the clubs buildings have had a parking space created next to the new buildings to park the food truck. Saving the club’s need to build additional kitchens and food storage area’s all over the property. Tree’s have been removed near the lake to create a new outdoor picnic area, or just having open space for a variety of outdoor events.

The new member deck will be built in 2019.

The backside of the club’s famous and historic clubhouse will get an addition, with the creation of a new member deck slated to open next year.

The clubs members and guests will be able to view activities happening on Courses 2&3 and the back putting green while sitting or standing out on the deck.

So if you are attending the BMW Championship next summer, and you haven’t been to Medinah since the 2012 Ryder Cup or before. There will be plenty of new things to see around the club in addition to all the championship level golf happening out on Course #3.

If you wish to purchase tickets for the BMW Championship, you can sign up for the Priority Ticket Purchase Plan by tomorrow Wednesday Nov. 7th, and be able to purchase tickets in advance of them going on sale to the general public. Please visit BMWChampionship.com for more details and to sign up.

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About Rory Spears

Rory spent over 8 years growing up working at Rob Roy Golf Club in Prospect Hts.IL, then two years at Chevy Chase in Wheeling. He has covered golf in Chicago since 1986. Rory was one of the initial members of WSCR all-sports radio Chicago and covered golf there for 5 seasons, before moving on to work for ESPN/Sportsticker and ESPN Radio. In addition to hosting Golfers on Golf Radio on WNDZ Am 750 Chicago, he writes for both Chicagoland Golf and the Chicago District (CDGA) Magazine. Rory has played over 460 courses in 37 states, and rates golf courses. He does golf course management and communications consulting, in the golf industry.