TALAMORE & MID SOUTH A SOUTHERN PINES SPECIAL

THE MISTWOOD GOLF CLUB in Rt. 53 in Bolingbrook is open daily until 10 PM. So why not stop in to practice, get a lesson, or tuned up with a club fitting. It’s never too early or too late to order new golf clubs. Mistwood Golf Dome is home to McWethy’s sports bar where you catch all the sports action. See More at Mistwoodgolfdome.com.

The Mid South Club an Arnold Palmer Design, in Southern Pines NC. Part of the Talamore resort.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation.

Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect with him on LinkedIn and or Facebook.

IF YOUR IN the golf capital of America the Sandhills of the Pinehurst/Southern Pines area, there plenty of courses to play.

But one facility that can slide a little under the radar, but is as good as the major players in town, is the Talamore-Mid South resort. 36 holes, with great places to practice, play, eat, drink and yes sleep. Because when it comes to having a place to stay, the Talamore-Mid South villas are about as good as it gets anywhere.

Talamore under the lights.

But first on the tee is the “New Course” at Talamore. The Rees Jones design is fun to play and has the the true flavor of sandhills country golf.

But the name “new course” is fitting. Because there are so many new things that golfers will find on the golf course, that were not there a few years ago.

So what’s new ! There has been tree work done, bunker work done, tee work done. The cart paths have been fixed. The clubhouse has been redone inside, with a new grille. But if you don’t have time to go inside, there is a new halfway house at the turn. Plus new bathrooms out on the golf course, real ones that have eliminated the need to find a portable toilet.

The par 3, 2nd hole at Talamore. Complete with some of the courses pot bunkers.

Talamore has some traditional sandhill style bunkers. But it also has some pot bunkers on a few of the holes. Land in the wrong spot in a few of them and getting out is no fun.

But one of things that is fun about Talamore, is room to hit the driver. You won’t get squeezed when hitting you driver, plus some tee boxes have a little elevation to them.

Water is not found all over the golf course, in fact it really doesn’t come into play until you need to hit your drive on the 18th hole.

Talamore’s 18th hole a par 4 with water.

The 18th hole at Talamore is the true definition  of risk-reward. If your a big hitter and you want to cross the water, you can try and go over it. But if not, take a shorter crossing and out into the center of the fairway. It is a great finishing hole.

If Talamore is a place you have not been to in a while, the news on the Llama’s is this. They are still there, and you can visit them at their pen to the left of the 14th tee. But their days as caddies are over. In the meantime, enjoy the walk and everything off the course. But if your ready for 36 holes in one day, just pull out and rive down the road a mile to the Mid-South Club, another great choice.

Talamore gives yo the option of play here, stay here and now move here. Because there are more home sites being built around the course, and near the main drive coming into the clubhouse. So visit TalamoreGolfResort.com or call (800)-552-6292.

The sun rises on the course Arnie built- The Mid South Club.

Mid-South an Arnold Palmer design, (previously known as Pinehurst Plantation) is part of the Talamore resort.

The two courses make-up a great 1-2 punch. After taking the driveway in to the clubhouse, that runs between holes 10-11,12 and 13. You immediately start to see the challenge you are in for that day.

But after arriving at the stately clubhouse, complete with a new bar and dining area, the grace and charm of the property start to set it. Because some of the best villa’s you can ever stay in, flank the clubhouse on both sides. Then behind the clubhouse are practice facilities that include a large putting green and driving range.

The par 3 6th hole at Mid South

Mid South starts out with two good opening holes that gives one a chance to settle in to their game. Even though the tee shot over water on the second has some challenge to it.

But the real kick-in of great holes start on the third hole, a well bunkered par 3 that plays 180 from the tips.

The fourth hole is a great uphill dogleg right, to an elevated green. You will see some elevation change here. Then the par 4, 5th hole requires a strategic tee shot, and an even better approach to this guarded green.  But the par 3, sixth hole is a shot over water and rocks that guard the front of the green, bunkers await back of the green.

The Mid South villa’s complete with two bedrooms, fireplaces, big screen TV’s and more, are outstanding.

But the closing holes on each nine leave the golfers a challenge.

The front nine finishes with a 542 yard par 5, with an approach shot over water. The back nine offers a par 3, 17th hole from 205 yards, and the par 4/5, 435 yard 18th hole.

The 18th is more often played as a par 5, even at 435 yards due to the rsik reward involved. Because it has a water all down the right side, that curves in front of the green. To the left are trees above the mounds and the cart path. After your round the new bar is a great place to go buy one. It has views of the golf course and practice area’s. The villa’s are only a short walk back from the dining area or the pro shop.

Talamore-Mid South  resort have two great golf course, and two even better places to stay. For more information visit TalamoreGolfresort.com (800)-552-6292. New housing options are available around the golf course.

MOVING AROUND MYRTLE BEACH-THREE COURSES TO PLAY

THE SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB has it’s pro shop and simulators open daily. So why not play the indoor version of Schaumburg Golf Club on the simulators. But while you golf order up some great food and beverage from Chandlers Chophouse right upstairs. Book a simulator online at Schaumburggolf.com or call the pro shop (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy, or connect on LinkedIn and Facebook.

Rory at Grande Dunes Golf Club in Myrtle Beach SC.

DURING LAST YEAR”S TRIP to Myrtle Beach South Carolina, I was able to play of the area’s top golf courses.

Myrtle Beach and the Grand Strand area, is one place you must visit if you love golf.

There are plenty of golf courses to choose from, in fact there are almost 90 courses in the area. Many of them won national awards from various golf publications, when they first opened or shortly thereafter.

The par 3, 12th hole at Tidewater Golf Club.

Tidewater is one of the courses that visiting golfers rave about, when they visit Myrtle Beach.

The Rees Jones-Ken Tomlinson design opened for play in 1990, and is now in it’s 32nd year of operation. Their is full size clubhouse, complete with a great menu and dining area to enjoy before or after your round.

But on the golf course there are six sets of tee’s, starting at 4,648 yards. But from the back tee’s its 7,044 yards, and a test for all golfers and big hitters. Some of the golf holes run along a water channel, so it’s not uncommon to see some nice boats racing past as you play. Tidewater’s par 3, 12th hole that plays 190 yards from the tips, is one of the most photographed holes in the area.

For more information and tee times visit Tidewatergolf.com or call the club at (843)-913-2424. Located at 1400 Tidewater Drive-North Myrtle Beach South Carolina.

Welcome to Grande Dunes, part of the Founders Group International.

The Founders Group International now contains 21 golf courses around the Myrtle Beach area.

Most of the courses are among the most requested courses to play for visiting golfers. Including the classic Pine Lakes Golf Club, just reopened from a restoration project.

Grande Dunes now in it’s 21st year of operation and designed by the Roger Rulewich Group, continues to attract golfers who want to play a fun, but challenging golf course. So while the course has six sets of tees to play from, the back tees are set at 7,578 yards. A test for even the best professionals who play the game.

The Par 3-11th hole at Grande Dunes. 190 yards.

Grande Dunes brings water into play on 12 of 18 holes.

During holes 13 and 14 water is a key factor on how to play the hole.

The 560 yard par 5, 13th hole has a double water crossing that requires a solid drive, and a better approach into the green.

But next up on the tee at the 14th hole, a 220 yard par 3, is a water crossing that runs into the water channel. A large bunker guards the right side of the green. But it does catch some shots and keeps them in play, instead of them ending up in the water. The Grande Dunes not only is 18 good holes of golf, it makes a great backdrop to the homes getting built around the golf course.

The club has a full size clubhouse for excellent dining and a fully stocked pro shop.  If your moving around Myrtle Beach playing golf, do it at the dunes. The Grande Dunes golf club is located at 8700 Golf Village Lane, Myrtle Beach. Tee times by calling the pro shop at (888)-886-8877 or visit Grandedunesgolf.com.

The Pete Dye Club at Barefoot Resort North Myrtle Beach.

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH is home to plenty of golf courses, including four of them at the Barefoot Resort.

The four designers include Greg Norman, Davis Love III, Tom Fazio and Pete Dye.

While the Norman course has fairways running up to long sandy waste area’s, there other styles through Barefoot Resorts four courses. The Love III has previously hosted the Big Break. The Hootie and the Blowfish-Monday after the Masters Outing has been played on the Dye Course.

The 185 yard par 3, 3rd hole on the Dye course at Barefoot Resort.

The Dye course is vintage Pete Dye, golfers who have played Dye courses in other states, will enjoy seeing some of Dye’s trademark hazards, or maybe they won’t.

But one thing is for sure, there will be a little down south Dye home cooking tossed-in.

While you won’t find any of Dye’s famous volcano bunkers like at the French Lick Resort, or trips through a cave-mine in West Virginia, there will be plenty of humps, bumps, pot bunkers and railroad ties to hold you over. The golf course has five sets of tees with yardage going from 5,021 up front, to 7,343 off the tips. But if you get off to a good start, hang on to your hats and visors. Because the closing holes (14-18) is where Dye makes you earn your score.

Between the yardage, the carry’s, a few more deep pot bunkers lurking, golfers will need to choose what club they hit, and where to leave the current shot, so the next one sets you up to score. The big clubhouse is a great place to dine, and the pro shop has plenty of options to pick from if your apparel or other shopping. The Dye Course is Semi-private so check for playing opportunities before arriving. The Club is located at 2600 Pete Dye Drive, more information at www.barefootgolf.com or call the resort at (843)-399-7238.

For more photo’s see Rory Spears Facebook, or Twitter @GogBlogGuy.

WORLDWOODS TO BECOME CABOT CITRUS FARMS

IN THE DOME or in THE SIMULATOR golf season in Chicago never ends. MISTWOOD GOLF DOME is the Chicago area’s premier golf dome. Toptracer, lessons, fittings and McWethy’s Sports Bar home to some award winning chicken wings. Equipment demo days are coming soon. So stay clicked in here to learn more, or Mistwoodgolfdome.com or call the dome at (630)-739-7600. THE SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB has it’s three simulators up and running, for rounds of golf that included the renovated Schaumburg Golf Club at 401 North Roselle Road. The pro shop is open with a full line of golf items and so is Chandlers Chophouse. So visit SchaumburgGolf.com or call (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

WORLD WOODS ready to become Cabot Citrus Farms.,

WORLD WOODS in Brooksville Florida is about to become the next great Florida Golf Destination, under a new name of Cabot Citrus Farms.

The property all 1200+ acres of it, has been purchased by Ben Cowan-Dewar who heads up the Cabot properties in Canada, and now with two other properties under construction. One of which includes a Caribbean destination in St. Lucia, and another in Western Canada.

Chicago based golf developer Mike Keiser is a partner with Cowan at Cabot Links in Canada, but whether Keiser gets involved in this project is unclear.

BUT FROM a press release by Cabot, is World Woods will close this year by June. The hopeful reopening date is December of 2023. Because both Pine Barrens and Rolling Oaks World Woods two courses will under-go significant renovations during the shut down period.

Word is that numerous architects have been on the property in recent months studying the land, the two golf courses and large practice area’s. Cowan-Dewar will have new architects in line for both courses by the end of March this year.  But one should not rule out yet another course at some point. Because there is enough land to so do.

Cabot Citrus Farms is North of Tampa by over 1 hour, and is some 90 minutes west of Orlando. Under Cowan-Dewar, there would be more development of homes and businesses, as Cabot Citrus Farms moves forward in development.

The facility opened in 1994, and both courses designed by Tom Fazio found their way on to various Top 100 or Best in State lists. But in recent years maintenance on both courses have suffered. More details here when announced. RS

THE GOG BLOG SPEAKS OUT-THE CALM BEFORE THE SHOW

SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB AT 401 North Roselle Road is open year round for golf. Because during the winter months, you can play the indoor version of the Schaumburg Golf Club, on any of the clubs three simulators. But you can also visit the fully stocked pro shop, or grab a bite in Chandlers Chophouse. So for the next 90 days enjoy the indoor version of Schaumburg Golf Club. The outdoor version will be here before you know it. Schaumburggolf.com or call the club at (847)-885-9000 lessons or fittings too.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter at GogBlogGuy or connect with him on LinkedIn/Facebook

IT’S GETTING TO BE THAT TIME when one heads south for the show, and a break from winter. At the 2021 PGA Show and ready to return.

THAT LAST BREAK before it all fires up for the start of the annual-well almost annual trip to the PGA Show.

Because right about now, I’m getting ready for some warm weather and a chance to swing the golf clubs again.

This week is finish getting ready so next week the trip south can begin.

First up is a visit to the Mistwood Golf Dome to swing the clubs, it’s been a month since that final outdoor round at the Bridges of Popular Creek in Hoffman Estates, on the rare 65 degree day in December. But now with the snow on the ground and temps much lower, it’s back into the dome or a nice simulator with some good courses.

EVERYTHING THAT HAD TO BE released by various companies or organizations right after the first of the year, was announced last week. Pinehurst now has back-to-back U.S. Opens again 2029, and the purse for this June’s U.S. Women’s Open at Pine Needles in Southern pines NC, will have it’s pursed doubled to $10 million.

THE NEW EQUIPMENT LAUNCHES are underway. Callaway Golf has a new line of Rogue Clubs coming out, drivers, woods and irons, and a updated golf ball. But since they are so hot, a Callaway fitting at the Mistwood Golf Dome this Thursday, sold out all it’s time slots in 30 minutes.

WILSON GOLF is basically sold out already for 2022. Wilson Golf President Tim Clarke says that orders from overseas have basically taken every club Wilson can make this year. Wow! So hurry if you wish to order from Chicago’s very own Wilson golf.

TITLEIST has announced a new line of Vokey SM9 wedges. But they won’t be in your hands until March. But tour pro’s used them this past week at Kapalua.

TOUR EDGE located here in Batavia Illinois, has new clubs coming next month. So stay tuned for more there.

IF YOU MISSED IT I posted my online interview (last Friday) with architect Michael Cocking from OCM Golf on the Medinah #3 renovation. It’s a great look into the master plan that won the bid from the club.

SETTING UP you wonder how long it takes to get ready for the PGA Tour. Because work is underway at Bay Hill already for the March tournament, and I have pictures. See Rory Spears Facebook and Twitter.

VIRUS OR NO VIRUS-if your thinking golf travel before long. I’ll have some ideas on where to go this week. So stay tuned in, as I try to clean out the In-Box from 2021 before I hit the road.

The Gog Blog returns tomorrow. RS

THE GOG BLOG’S SUNDAY MORNING SHORT GAME-NEWS COLUMN

ISN’T TIME YOU VISITED THE SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB located at 401 N. Roselle Road in Schaumburg, just minutes from Woodfield Mall. The year round golf operation at SGC includes 3 simulators open all winter. A stocked pro shop, and the Chandlers Chophouse, with some of the best burgers in town. So book a simulator today by calling the club at (847)-885-9000 and visit SchaumburgGolf.com Play Schaumburg Golf Club.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf, follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn and Facebook.

  THE MISTWOOD GOLF DOME is Open Daily until 10 PM. It’s Complete with the NFL Ticket for all the games today including the Bears-Vikings season finale. So come with your clubs and your appetite and enjoy all the action. Book you hitting bay by calling the dome at (630)-739-7600 or at MistwoodGolfDome.com. The Callaway fitting event for this coming Thursday, sold out in 30 minutes. But it probably will not be the last one.

Visit Pinehurst.com

PINEHURST the home of American golf, gets more great news from the USGA.

On the 15th anniversary of the back-to-back U.S. Open’s in 2014, come 2029 it will happen again.

While Pinehurst will host the men’s open in 2024 first, just five years later a back-to-back will happen again in 2029.

It did not take long for the excitement to start only seven years before the first tee shot was hit.

PINEHURST CEO Bob Dedman Jr. said the resort was excited to for the opportunity from the USGA, to do the back-to-backs again. Michelle Wie-West the 2014 U.S. Women’s Open winner said she can’t wait for the the games youngers players today, to experience what the players felt in 2014.

Pinehurst Resort President Tom Pashley said,” No one wants to wish time away. But it’s easy to say we can’t wait for 2029.” More details at Pinehurst.com or USGA.org.

The lodge at Pine Needles in Southern Pines North Carolina.

THEN JUST A COUPLE OF MILES down the road from the Pinehurst Resort is Pine Needles-Mid Pines and the Southern Pines Country Club, or Ross Resorts.

Pine Needles will host the Women’s Open this year in June.

But news just out is that the Women’s Open will receive a major bump in prize money.

It will be almost doubled from $5.5 million to $10 million. As USGA CEO Michael Whan said, only 3 professional women golfers made $1.8 million for the entire year of 2021. This year one golfer will make that in a week. ProMedica has been brought in as a presenting sponsor for the U.S. Women’s Open to help grow the purse.

In addition the USGA announced several new U.S. Women’s Open future sites. 2023 Pebble Beach, 2024 Lancaster CC, 2025 Erin Hills, 2026 Riviera Country Club, 2027 Inverness Club, 2028 Oakmont Country Club, 2029 Pinehurst #2, 2030 Interlachen, 2031-2042 Oakland Hills Country Club, 2034 Merion. So for more information see USGA.org.

TROY BURNE Golf Club in Hudson Wisconsin a Hurdzan and Fry design is for sale through Chris Charnas and Links Capital Advisors. One of the top public courses in Wisconsin near the Minnesota border has been growing in stature and profit over the last three years. Asking price $7.5M, for more details contact Charnas at chris@links-cap.com.

THE IRISH OPEN 2022-are you ready for Ireland in the year ahead. Because if you are it’s time to explore Ireland-through Club Choice Ireland. So learn more by visiting info@clubchoiceireland.com See Ireland like you have never seen it before.

XXIO 12 clubs coming February 11th.

XXIO has announced the new XXIO 12 and XXIO ladies will be available on February 11th.

Both the woods and irons are lightweight. But they bring a great look, exceptional feel and sound off the club face.

So if your needs are more distance, better control and a better golf game. XXIO 12 could be for you. “Having a 20-year head start in lightweight technology has been a real plus for us. It has allowed our engineers to incremental improvements and on technologies that best accompany that performance,” said Chuck Thiry, Vice President XXIO. “We are certain that our players will continue to see big advancements in performance and distance in the XXIO 12. ” More details at Clevelandgolf.com or XXIOUSA.com.

The Gog Blog Speaks Out-returns tomorrow. RS

MISTWOOD & MORE-CATCHING UP WITH ARCHITECT RAY HEARN

MISTWOOD Golf Club a Ray Hearn design. Located on Renwick Road in Romeoville. But golfers can also enjoy Mistwood Golf Dome in Bolingbrook on Rt. 53 during the winter months (630)-739-7600. At the golf club McWethy’s Tavern is open all year round so enjoy both facilities. Mistwood Golf Club or Mistwoodgc.com or call (815)-254-3333.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy and or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

Architect Ray Hearn at Mistwood Golf Club in Romeoville, during the 2021 Illinois State Amateur.

DURING THE 2021 ILLINOIS Amateur last July. Architect Ray Hearn returned to Mistwood Golf Club, a course he designed and then renovated years later.

Hearn joined Golfers on Golf, and Tim Cronin of the Illinois Golfer, to discuss Mistwood, Mistwood’s late owner Jim McWethy, and other national projects that Ray Hearn Golf Design is currently working with.

Hearn an Evans Scholar and Michigan State alum, has also worked in Illinois at Flossmoor Golf Club, Midlothian CC and has another project coming soon in Oak Brook.

This spring Hearn will get back to work at Boyne Resorts in Northern Michigan, where among other projects, he will be designing the resorts new short course.

CLICK HERE to hear Part 1 of the interview with architect Ray Hearn (Part 1 mostly covers Mistwood).

CLICK HERE to hear Part 2 with architect Ray Hearn. Part 2 covers more of Hearn’s Michigan and other national projects.

Hearn’s work at Midlothian CC will get unveiled in Spring of this year. RS

OCM’S MICHAEL COCKING EXPLAINS THE MEDINAH 3 RENOVATION

MISTWOOD GOLF-A YEAR ROUND GOLF OPERATION. Inside or outside Mistwood gives the Chicago area some place to play all year round. Practice, Lessons, or Club Fitting are available all year round. McWethy’s Tavern and McWethy’s Sportsbar, are open all year round. So visit Mistwoodgolfdome.com or call the dome for the winter golf season at (630)-739-7600. The dome is on Rt. 53 in Bolingbrook, open daily to 10 PM

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. You can follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn/Facebook.

This is the next chapter of the Medinah Course #3 Renovation, a story first reported by Tim Cronin at Illinoisgolfer.net and Golfersongolf.com, and the social media channels for both outlets.

Recently the Medinah Country Club members voted to approve a major renovation to it’s famed and historic championship course #3. The Australian golf design firm of OCM was awarded the bid. O=2006 U.S. Open Champion Geoff Ogilvy, C=Michael Cocking and M=Ashley Mead.

OCM design architect Michael Cocking.

AFTER AN EXCHANGE of messages on Twitter, OCM design architect Michael Cocking offered Golfers on Golf an opportunity to submit questions regarding the renovation.

The renovation which is one of, it not the most significant renovation in the Chicago area in years, has left many wondering how this project is going to play out.

With the 2026 Presidents Cup now 4 years away, Cocking supplied Golfers on Golf with the vision the OCM team has for Medinah #3. GOG-thanks Michael Cocking for the time, the input, and a look into Team OCM’s crystal ball for the Medinah #3 project. RS

Welcome to OCM Golf (logo).

GOG-Take us through the back-nine changes, it appears that’s where the heavy lifting is being done. Is it true there will be three new holes.

COCKING: Medinah has such an interesting history and we’re fortunate to have some wonderful old aerials, photo’s and plans available. With many prominent architects having been involved over the past 100 years we found ourselves finding many elements we were keen to restore, other area’s we wanted to retain and just tweak a little and then there were some which we felt required a more significant change. Perhaps the most significant changes can be found in the last six holes as this involves somewhat of a re-routing, however within this change there are elements we are restoring such as the original playing corridor of the 18th hole.

COURSE #3 is fortunate to be built around such a wonderful natural feature in Lake Kadijah. Along with the beautiful old Oaks and undulating ground it helps create a unique look and feel to the golf course. But it struck us that the Lake doesn’t really come into play for the better golfer. Nor does it offer much interest as a strategic hazard, like so many of the great holes that play around water do. In fact the water really just affects the average golfer, with forced carries on 2, 13, 14, 17.

ON TOP of that there were a couple of elements to the design of the last six that we felt could be improved. Firstly the 13th and 17th are both very similar holes playing alongside each other, both over water and in the same direction. We also thought there was a chance to create a world class short par four and to be honest that was one of the areas where the idea of re-routing started.

Every time we looked at the 17th our eyes were drawn along the bank tot he right of the green and over towards the 14th tees which set the lake edge on a diagonal which reminded us a little of a Cape style short par 4. Then the more we looked at the last six, the more we felt there was a chance to create an even more memorable and dramatic finish to the golf course. Aside from the quality of the holes, one of the things we also liked was how much action would take place around the lake for the final few holes, and with the area shaped like a natural amphitheatre, it could make for a pretty stunning conclusion to a tournament.

COCKING THEN ADDED some thoughts on the final six holes of Course #3.

13-The first twelve holes more or less stay within their current alignments so the start of the big change comes with the 13th. Instead of playing across the water the new hole plays along the water’s edge as a par three. The lake edge will be reshaped so water provides the backdrop to the green and protects the right side. Typically this hole will play into a prevailing breeze.

14-The first half of the 14th sees a return to an earlier version of the hole when it played as a short par four from a tee just forward of the current start of the fairway. But rather than playing to the current green, we suggest the moves back and just in front of the beautiful stand of Oak trees currently left of the current 15th fairway. The proposed new 14th hole would no longer feature the water carry from the tee; however the new 18th hole replaces this concept and will play as a par 5 from all but the tournament tees. This ensures that the existing par is retained at 72 for the silver, white and green courses, and a par 71 for the tournament layout.

15. The proposed 15th is actually the existing 16th. But with the removal of the short par four (existing 15th) it allows us to position the tee on a much better line. It also allows us to stretch the hole to pretty much any length.

2006 U.S. Open Champion Geoff Ogilvy is the ” O” in OCM.

16. The most dramatic change to the course comes at the 16th hole. A ‘Cape’ style par 4, playing from the current 17th tee to the 14th tees with Lake Kadijah making a spectacular diagonal hazard all the way to the green.

17. The proposed 17th hole replaces the existing 13th and 17th holes as the par 3 that plays across Lake Kadijah on the back nine. This could be a spectacular “one-shotter”, far exceeding the drama of the current 13th or 17th holes due to the brilliant green site. The hole can play anywhere from 120 yards to 225 yards, but our preference is that it plays as a mid-length hole of around 150 or 160 yards.

18. The final hole presents an opportunity to restore some elements of the original design. Long-standing members may well remember that before the mid 1980’s when the 17th hole was built, the course finished by playing up the strip of ground adjacent to the first hole. With our suggested 17th green returning to the same hill as the 12th green site it aligns perfectly to restore the original tee shot, albeit from the other side of the water.

At around 500 yards, the hole will become a very stronger par four the tournament professionals, but for the member, it will play as a par 5 to replace the loss of the current 14th hole and ensure the course retains its par of 72. Like the 16th and 17th holes, a tee should be built on the far side of the lake so short hitters aren’t forced to carry the water.

GOG: ARE THERE ANY THOUGHTS on moving tees on the par 3 second hole. Plus are there any other parts of the front nine that could see major changes.

COCKING: I guess the 2nd really needs to be looked at in conjunction with the other par 3’s. One of our criticism’s of the short holes is that 3 of them felt very similar with 2, 13, and 17 all playing pretty much straight over the water. We looked at a few different options for the 2nd. But with the changes to the last six holes we felt retaining the basic concept made sense. However, like so many of the current holes playing across the water, they prove to be really difficult for the average golfer but not hard for the tournament professional. To make it a little more friendly for the average member we have suggested filling a little of the water short and right as well as building a shorter tee just behind the 1st green, which helps shorten the carry over water.

The change to the edge of the water also sets the bank on more of a diagonal, with the longest carry on the left and the shortest on the right. Diagonal water carries are almost always more interesting that when directly across the line of play as you have to judge both line and length which we think will make for a much more interesting looking approach.

The Medinah Country Club clubhouse.

At the tee end we have more or less retained the existing locations but have added a tournament tee further back along the edge of the water. We will likely build a few tees here so the markers can be moved around depending on pin position, wind competition and how the other par 3’s are set up on that particular day.

Other major changes on the front concern the 5th, 6th and 10th holes. Where we are looking to reintroduce the concept as of a boundary to allow significant screening (particularly on the 6th and 10th). So you can no longer see the fence, roads or powerlines. A new post and rail style fence will run down the left of these holes and help strategic interest in place of just bunkers.

GOG: TELL US MORE about the short course and new big putting green.

COCKING: With the relocation of the 18th hole, there is a terrific opportunity to use the space previously occupied by the fairway to create a short course. With around 5 or 6 acres to play with, there is enough space to build 5 or 6 holes of between 60 and 100 yards along with a very large undulating putting course.

This could be come a fantastic place for kids and families to get introduced to the game; provide a place to play a loop or tow close to the clubhouse; and, offer an additional practice facility to practice a range of shots up to 100 yards. No doubt it will become a popular area to settle bets relax with a few holes at the end of the day.

One of the wonderful features of the drive-in is the view across the course through to the clubhouse. We didn’t want to lose that feel and so this plan ensures there is still golf played along the entry in. Plus the view through the clubhouse stays pretty much the same as the new 18th green sits really close to its existing location-just played from a different direction.

GOG: THIS WAS AMAZING WORK by your your team to land the project, considering travel restrictions from Covid. Do you think getting this project is a boost for your firm in the USA going forward.

COCKING: The project-it certainly had it’s logistical challenges. But we were absolutely thrilled to have been appointed. Even more so now that we have the support of the membership and can plan in more detail to commence the work. Without a doubt this is a huge boost for our firm and we’re excited to get started next fall (November of 2022) to see our plans start to take shape on the ground.

Golfers on Golf will continue to follow the Medinah renovation project as it advances forward in the months ahead.

HONMA GOLF ANNOUNCES AIZU & BLACK COLLECTIONS

  SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB home of three simulators and Chandlers Chophouse is open for business all winter long. So why not stop in today and play a round of golf on the simulators, and while you’re there grab a bite at the bar in Chandlers Chophouse. Schaumburg Golf Club is located at 401 North Roselle Road, or call (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn and Facebook.

NEW FROM HONMA GOLF the BERES AIZU & BLACK COLLECTIONS.

HONMA GOLF is proud to start the new year with the debut of the Beres Aizu and Black Collections. Because these clubs offer both a stunning visual look, but clubs that produce straighter, longer ball flight, with increased ball speed.

“This new line represents the latest breakthrough technology for golfers with moderate to modest swing speeds,” says Janeann Lanning COO of Honma North America. “BERES Aizu and Black allow golfers to make, stable swings with enhanced speed and powerful ball flight.”

BERES Aizu is the latest chapter in Honma Golf’s  long history. This line has been created in collaboration with Japanese Aizu artisans. The long history of Aizu paintings dating back to 1590, represent Japanese heritage and traditions.

“Aziu appeals to players with an artistic flair and respect for Japanese craftsmanship,” says Lanning. “While Black brings a modern, refined look for players who value performance and style without compromise. Perhaps attracting younger golfers who might not have previously tried BERES.”

SO FOR DRIVERS, FAIRWAYS AND HYBRIDS, the Aziu line still carries the 2-to-5 star grading. But with a more advanced shaft technology as the grades progress. So each driver now carry a triple sole slots with an L-Cup face for a more powerful initial ball speed. But comes with a Center of Gravity (CG) that adds a high trajectory, low spin shot, with forgiveness and more distance.

BUT FROM THE IRON SIDE the 3D L-Cup structure has a new ultra-thin face with vertical slits that improve the face insert strength. This maximizes both speed and forgiveness.

SHAFTS are the famously hand-rolled and performance driven shafts. These use a high strength lightweight materials reserved for aerospace manufacturing. Like a sword used in fencing, the Honma shaft’s flex. But recover more quickly to it’s original shape, which produces an unprecedented stability and swing speed.

SO FOR MORE INFORMATION on options, costs, release dates and more, visit http://ushonmagolf.com/collections.

CHAD JOHANSEN-BLACKBERRY OAKS JOIN CALLAWAY GOLF

MISTWOOD GOLF DOME with new improvements this winter, is the home for Chicago area indoor golf in the dome. Mistwood is complete with Toptracer, and a great place for lessons and club fittings. See more at Mistwoodgolfdome.com or call (630)-739-7600. The dome is located on Rt. 53 in Bolingbrook and his home to McWethy’s Sports Bar.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. So follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

Blackberry Oaks GM and head golf professional Chad Johansen has joined Callaway Golf.

CHAD JOHANSEN the general manager of Blackberry Oaks Golf Course in Bristol has joined Callaway Golf as a brand ambassador.

“We’re excited to welcome Chad to our Team,” said Chip Brewer, President and Chief Executive Officer of Callaway Golf. “Chad is very innovative, entrepreneurial, and has a strong passion to grow the game of golf. So his junior golf program continues to strive year after year. So we look forward to working with him.”

Johansen 42, a member of the Illinois PGA Section and turned professional in 2001, and became head golf professional at the Blackberry Oaks Golf course in 2003.

The Chad Johansen Golf Academy started with just seven kids in 2006. But his junior programs now have over 600 participants from 17 communities in the Chicago area.

Johansen (L) was a guest this summer on  the Ziehm & Spears 2021 Podcast Series.

“My true passion is introducing the game of golf to kids,” Johansen said. “They are the future of the game, and nothing beats seeing a kid smile on a golf course. I am grateful for this opportunity and am honored to represent Callaway Golf. This is a dream come true for me, and I can’t wait to showcase their premium products to my junior golfers, and everyone who plays at Blackberry Oaks Golf Course.”

Johansen who coined the phrase #KidsRule recently spent time at the Callaway Golf headquarters in Carlsbad California. During his time there, Johansen got to spend time with both CEO Chip Brewer and reigning PGA Champion Phil Mickelson.

“They made feel like part of the family, and I am thrilled to represent Callaway for years to come,” said Johansen who added this about Callaway Golf. “But what really stands out about Callaway, is their attention to detail. Because the quality of everything they make is second to none. So I believe that’s why they are the world’s largest manufacturer of golf clubs.”

But for more information see ChadJohansen.com or visit Blackberryoaks.com. During the winter Johansen is working indoors at the Go For It Sports Dome in Yorkville Illinois. Because golf season never ends in Johansen’s world of golf, now Callaway Golf.

TITLEIST ANNOUNCES SM9 VOKEY WEDGES ON TOUR THIS WEEK

WHEN IT’S COLD OUTSIDE and snow is piled-up on the grass. It’s time to take your game into the simulators at the Schaumburg Golf Club at 401 North Roselle Road. Just minutes from Woodfield Mall. The Schaumburg Golf Simulators allow you to play many Top 100 golf courses, OR the newly renovated Schaumburg Golf Club. So book your winter fairway at Schaumburgolf.com or (847)-885-9000 Chandlers chophouse is open

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter@GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

THE NEW VOKEY SM9 WEDGES

THE NEW Vokey SM9 Wedges will get put into play this week at the Sentry Tournament of Champions on the PGA Tour.

But they will first become available to the public golfer in March.

Designer Bob Vokey and Vokey Tour representative Aaron Dill, along with Vokey’s team of design engineers, have spent two years working on these wedges.

With testing getting done by Titleist PGA Tour staff players. Stay tuned for updates on release date, cost, shafts and lofts at Titliest.com or Vokey.com. Watch them in play at Kapalua Maui, on the Plantation Course this week.