THE USGA has opened volunteer registration for the 2018 U.S. Sr. Women’s Open at the Chicago Golf Club in Wheaton, to be held in July of 2018, see The EPIC Red Driver now available for a limited time only, Visit #EPICRED         _____________________________________________________________________

Checking into the Innisbrook Resort in Tarpon Springs Florida. The Gog Blog written by Rory Spears, Director of Content. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy.

The renovation of the Innisbrook Golf Resorts North Course is complete, and the golf course has reopened for play.

The six month renovation that started on June 5th, has seen the replacement of all 18 greens, using a no-till method of turf replacement, that will result in a firmer, and more consistent putting surface.

The greens were redone with a TifEagle Bermuda Grass- the same surface used on the resorts Copperhead Course, that is used for the PGA Tour’s Valspar Championship.

North Course 5th hole. Photo courtesy of Innisbrook PR and Ramona Herald.

“The North Course is re-opening with an exceptional putting surface that our guests and members will truly enjoying playing,” said Innisbrook Managing Director Mike Williams. “We never rest on our success as a nationally recognized PGA Tour venue, and the popularity of the North Course offers yet another championship golf venue that attracts golfers from all over the world.”

The renovation included the re-working of the bunkers, general maintenance, and the clearing of all the storm canals, and some general pruning and trimming of trees to create access to the greens, as originally designed by the late Larry Packard. That process has allowed for the return of pin placements that were no longer being used during recent play, with the expansion of the green surfaces. designed by th

The 3rd green on the North Course.

Tee times are now being taken for the North Course, and the championship Copperhead course is now fully settled from it’s renovation of two years ago, that included the addition of the now popular white tour sand in the courses bunkers.

The Innisbrook Resort has four golf courses, and is operated by the Salamander Hotels and Resort chain, founded by the current CEO Sheila Johnson. The resorts four courses were all designed by Packard, who name sits on the resorts famed steakhouse.

The Salamander Resort Chain operates the Hammock Beach Resort on Florida’s East Coast, that has just reopened the Ocean Course designed by golf great Jack Nicklaus after a 13 month renovation.

For more information on the Innisbrook Resort with spa, four golf courses and the Innisbrook Golf Institute call (727)-942-2000 or visit online or see


THE GOG BLOG by written by Golfers on Golf radio host and Director of Content RORY SPEARS. Follow Rory on facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy. At Bethpage Black.

 THE RED EPIC DRIVER by Callaway Golf, a limited supply available for order now, visit THE NORTH COURSE at Innisbrook is open after renovation, book your tee times now.   _____________________________________________________________________

Chad Johansen in the CJ Putting Lab at Blackberry Oaks Golf Club in Bristol.

With the temperatures hanging in the low 60’s yesterday, there was a need to get out and play golf OUTSIDE, one more time.

Yes, only days ago it seemed like dome season was here to stay. But over the last few days Mother Nature raised the outdoor temps back up to a level where outdoor golf could and would happen for the diehards of the Chicago area.

The glue at Blackberry Oaks Golf Club is it’s GM/Head golf professional Chad Johansen. Johansen is more than just a golf pro, he is someone who has created a junior golf environment at Blackberry Oaks. Motto of the day every day is, “Kids Rule”. In fact one of the biggest surprises in the Illinois PGA Section, is how Johansen hasn’t won some type of IPGA Award for junior golf development. His junior golf numbers grow every year.

Johansen’s Perfect Putting Aid is a winner.

Johansen is the creative type, his Perfect Putting Aid is as good as it gets when finding a way to putt better. Forget some app on your phone, or a video, if you want to putt better it’s simple. Put a Perfect Putting Aid in your living room like I do, or the basement or your office and use it before you play. You will putt better that day, regardless of the green speeds, or the humps and bumps the architects have installed.

The CJ putting lab at Blackberry Oaks.

Last week when Johansen was firing out his social media promo’s, ones that said,” Hey the weather is fine, why not golf on Black Friday instead of shopping” he was on to a little something that brought out the golfers.

As a result when I called Johansen yesterday and said, Hey can I come out and play if your still open and he said he was, with the temps at 63, I made a mad-dash for Bristol with the golf bag in my cars trunk.

The bunker restoration plan is underway at Blackberry Oaks.

When I arrived I found that the BBO Clubhouse was getting some new improvements.

First up the pavement in front of the clubhouse had been redone, and the clubhouse itself was getting a new roof.

The bigger surprise was once on the golf course, I found that many of the bunkers were surrounded by plastic and work had started on some of them.

Blackberry Oaks is a good public golf course that might not get the attention it deserves, it’s fun and long enough at 6,400 yards to give anyone a nice round. But in some spots it was starting to show it’s age, so Kudo’s to Johansen and the ownership group for starting the bunker improvements.

After playing through a twosome and a threesome, I kept hitting fairways with my Callaway Epic Driver and cruised around the course in a snappy 2:45. My low 80’s score wasn’t bad and the fresh air and pace of play made it great for what could be the final outdoor round of 2017. All winter long I’ll be thinking of that 40 foot birdie putt I made on the Par 5, second hole.

But I do know this, if it gets up around 50 next week and some courses remain open, December golf in Chicago is always a rare experience so I’ll be out taking advantage of a gift from Mother Nature.

In 2018 I’ll be looking forward to playing Blackberry Oaks again, when all the bunkers have been renovated. You should as well. RS


EPIC RED a limited edition driver by Callaway Golf, order now at

THE USGA  has announced that the volunteer registration is now open for the very first U.S. Sr. Women’s Open, to be held from July 12-15 next year.

The championship will be contested at the historic Chicago Golf Club that will be enjoying it’s 126th year of being a golf facility. The club is located in the west suburban area of Chicago, the town of Wheaton Illinois.

The newly renovated North Course at Innisbrook in Tarpon Springs Florida. Pictured the 5th green.

The championship is in need of near 1,000 volunteers, that will serve on 15 committees.

Those committee include, Marshals, Player Services, Leader Boards, and Merchandise. The assignments are given out on a first-come, first-served basis.

All interested volunteers should contact the United States Golf Association at

Volunteers are required to purchase the Volunteer Package for $85. This does include one championship golf shirt, one championship golf jacket, one championship golf hat and championship pin, one water bottle and volunteer credential valid for all seven days of the championship, as well as complimentary food, snacks and beverages on the days they volunteer. All volunteers are asked to perform four shifts of of 5-6 hours per day, through out championship week.

The U.S. Sr. Women’s Open at Chicago Golf Club.

The inaugural U.S. Sr. Women’s Open is open to professional females, and amateur females with a handicap index of not more than 7.4, who have reached their 50th birthday as of the first day of the championship.

The field will consist of 120 players who have earned entry through an exemption category or through sectional qualifying at a site across the nation in spring of 2018.

The Chicago Golf Club was founded in 1892 by Charles Blair MacDonald, the champion of the first U.S. Amateur in 1895. The club is the oldest golf club in the United States in continuous use at the same location, and is one of the five founding clubs of the USGA.

The historic Chicago Golf Club in Wheaton.

The 2018 U.S. Sr. Women’s Open will be the clubs 12th USGA Championship and it’s first since the 2005 Walker Cup matches, won by the team from the United States.

There have been three U.S. Opens played at the club (1897,1900,1911) and four U.S. Amateurs (1897, 1905, 1909 and 1912). Other USGA Championships do include the 1903 U.S. Women’s Amateur and the 1979 U.S. Senior Amateur. The club served as the host venue for the 1928 Walker Cup matches.

Ticket information will be announced at a later date, along with the unveiling of the new U.S.Sr. Women’s Trophy. For more information on the championship and the USGA  Golf House Museum in Far Hills, New Jersey, and other USGA programs. Please visit


 A SWITCH TO CALLAWAY GOLF, it’s in the bag, it’s that easy. THE PUTTING Studio in Blackberry Oaks, see Chad Johansen. #PPA    ______________________________________________________________________

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy outdoor golf 1 more time.

Well the fall golf season is over, or is it. Yes it is, now it’s more like the winter golf season or dome golf season. But for today and tomorrow the chance to play outdoor golf does exist.

It was over 60 degrees today based on some reports, and will be close to that tomorrow. Outdoors I go, in case it’s the last chance to play before the snow lands.

I’ll bomb away with the new Callaway Woods, that have lowered my handicap down 3 strokes this summer, and see if I can finish on high note, that means a low score. Bottom line it’s outdoor golf, always a good thing. even though I love our area golf domes. Now if the wind can stay low and rain holds off, that would be great.

GOLFING WITH THE PRESIDENT, it still amazes me that people get upset when the President of the United States goes golfing, seriously folks get a life. If you don’t like President Trump that’s fine, or president’s Obama, Bush or Clinton to name a few.

It doesn’t matter what party you support, but show a little respect. Presidents are people too and they deserve every right to get a little exercise and some fresh air where ever they can get it.

It was surprising, or maybe it wasn’t to hear the outcry from the cry babies about President Trump golfing with Tiger Woods, Dustin Johnson and a day later the greatest golfer of all time Jack Nicklaus.

Seriously folks get over it, and I’m glad that every president since Dwight Eisenhower except Jimmy Carter has been a golfer, with the late John F. Kennedy maybe the best of them all. If VIP’s or PGA Tour professionals are golfing with President Trump, deal with it and let them enjoy the great sport that it is.

RIP RJ HARPER, the long time head golf professional at Pebble Beach passed away at age 61 from cancer after a battle of over one year. I met Harper on my visit to Pebble Beach and he could not have been nicer. Golf lost a true ambassador in Mr. Harper. My condolences to his family and friends.

OUTGOING CEO Wally Uihlein of Titleist sent a letter to the Wall Street Journal regarding a story about rolling back the golf ball. That has been a topic for a while as golf courses get longer because the ball goes further. Well of course it goes further but that alone has not made courses easier for the average amateur golfer. The average handicap is not dropping in big numbers. If the PGA Tour or USGA wants to do something for it’s events, fine. But let the amateurs have the opportunity to get better, and at times hit a drive long and far like the professionals do.

KUDO’s to my Arlington Heights neighbor Doug Ghim on being selected to the Global Golf Post’s Top World’s Amateur 1st team. U of I players Northbrook’s Nick Hardy (2nd team) and Dylan Meyer Honorable Mention were also named. On the Women’s side Northwestern’s Hannah Kim was named to the second team as well.

There is still a few hours left on Cyber Monday, great golf deals are everywhere. Do go take advantage where you can. The Gog Blog will return this week. RS


   2017 has been an EPIC year for Callaway Golf, stay clicked in during the days ahead and find out what’s new at Callaway Golf in 2018, Don’t forget Cyber Monday deals on the Callaway website. THE NORTH COURSE at Innisbrook Resort & Golf Club is open after renovation. Visit part of the Salamander Resort Chain. ______________________________________________________________________

RORY SPEARS , Editor and Director of Content, for the Golfers on Golf online machine Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy and into the lobby of the 5-Star French Lick Resort.

The PGA of America, Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale Arizona, and the National Car Rental Group have formed a partnership with the Golf Channel to create a special of the PGA Jr. League National Championship recently held at Grayhawk Golf Club.

This two-hour primetime feature will air on Tuesday December 5th, 7PM CST with a rebroadcast at 11:30 PM also on the 5th.

The championship match was played between Georgia and New Jersey, with Georgia pulling out a hard fought win in the title match.

Team Illinois at the PGA Junior League matches recently held in Arizona.

The special shown by the Golf Channel will features with the players, some daily highlights, and footage taken from the championship matches and awards ceremony.

The Golf Channel team of Ryan Burr doing the Play-by-Play along with analyst Tripp Isenhour. On course reporters include Billy Ray Brown and Kay Cockerill.

Golf Channel social media host Alexandra Laughlin was on site to interact with the players competing.

In 2017 a record of over 42,000 boys and girls competed in the PGA junior league, which was comprised of over 3,400 teams. In 2016 there was over 36,000 kids involved that played on just over 2,900 teams.

Once arriving on site, the eight teams were divided in two divisions. There was the Ryder Division and the Wanamaker Division. Team Illinois that was captained by Cog Hill’s Kevin Weeks, and coached by Clayton Pendergraft, competed in the Ryder Division and finished 7th in the competition. The players on Team Illinois all competed out of Cog Hill. in Lemont.

“Grayhawk has been fortunate to host national events on every level, and this one is as cool as they come,” said Joe Shershenovich, Director of Golf for Grayhawk Golf Club. “As the host venue, and Southwest PGA Member, we were happy to welcome everyone involved to Scottsdale. Golf Channel’s coverage boosts the profile of the PGA Jr. League by showing kids nationwide just how fun it is to learn and play the game through this unique program. As someone who’s been involved from the beginning. it’s easy to see why the PGA Jr. League is growing so fast. Those who tune into the Golf Channel on Dec. 5 will get an opportunity to see for themselves.”

The PGA Jr. league rpogram on the Golf Channel will be shown next Tuesday on the Golf Channel at 7 PM local CST Time. You can let your junior golfers see first hand how exciting the the league is, and encourage them to participate in 2018.


THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter @GogBlogGuy.

Time is almost up to purchase the 2018 GolfVisions Players Pass, through Midnight tonight.

The included rounds and greens are a $800 dollar value, now for only $99.95 or soon at $249.95

Act now in the final minutes for a great savings.


THE GOG BLOG written by Rory Spears, Editor and Director of Content. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy and on the 18th green at Erin Hills with the U.S. Open trophy

The Book on Erin Hills, by Gary D’Amato with Paul Hundley on Camera.

THE CHICAGO GOLF CLUB volunteer opportunities coming soon for the 2018 U.S. Sr. Women’s Open July 9-16. ARROWHEAD Golf Club has announced they have closed the golf course for the remainder of 2017, reopening next spring ______________________________________________________________________

                     FROM FRIDAY NOVEMBER 24TH through Monday November 27th you can enjoy a 20% off discount on all items purchased on the Erin Hills Online Store. At checkout you must use the code 17Open to take advantage. This offer does NOT apply to gift cards.

The Erin Hills gift shop will re-open for your holiday shopping on Monday November 27th and remains open through January 5th. Hours M-F 10 am to 5 Pm. the shop will be open on one Saturday the 9th of December from 10-4pm.

During the holiday shopping season, you will receive the Erin Hills coffee table book for free, with the purchase of a round of golf or merchandise of more than $150.00.

Details see or call (866)-772-4769. Erin Hills is one of the 6 public golf venues to host a U.S. Open.


  MIKE MUNRO & JIM MCWETHY invite you this holiday season to try the Green Street Grille in Bensenville (L), located in downtown Bensenville on Green Street (of course) visit for more information. (R) McQ’s Dome in Bolingbrook is now open for winter golf season. The Black Friday sale starts at 8 AM on Friday and starting at 10 Am is the Black Friday Brunch. Check out for more information.     _____________________________________________________________________


THE GOG BLOG by Rory Spears, Editor and Director of Content. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy.

CONGRATS to Coach Kevin Weeks and Team Illinois from Cog Hill, on their 7th place finish at the PGA Jr. League National Championships last week in Arizona.

Happy Holidays from Everyone at Cog Hill. The Cog Hill annual Holiday Open House is coming up on Saturday December 2nd starting at 10 AM and running until 3 PM. Almost everything in the pro shop is on sale. There is gift wrapping, punch and Hors D’oeuvres.

The Par 3, 14th Hole on Course #4 Dubsdread at Cog Hill, with the new cart park.

The Three Club Frosty Open will be held on December 10th, pick your best Three-Clubs and try to go low. A warm jacket that day might help as well.

Are you getting ready for the first Chicago area golf tournament of the 2018 golf season.

Well again this year it’s the Eskimo Open at Cog Hill, to be contested on Sunday January 7th, unless the weather is really really bad.

Do you need the perfect holiday gift for the serious golf in your family. If so Cog Hill has the right choice for you, and one that will have your favorite golfer beaming with joy.

IT’S THE COG HILL COURSE #4  Dubsdread Membership for only $4,900.00 dollars in 2018.

The Dubsdread membership gives the golfer not only special benefits on Dubsdread a Top 100 public course you can play, but for other activities at Cog Hill, and for your guests when they join you for golf at Cog Hill. If you have junior golfers in your family they too can benefit with a discount on their Cog Hill Junior membership.

A COG HILL REMINDER, Cog Hill is open all year. Courses #1 & 3 never close, so if the winter weather is mild, and can always get out and play Cog Hill. The range is open daily and is partially enclosed and has heaters overhead.

So why not make Cog Hill a stop for holiday golf needs, and or winter golf play, practice or lesson sessions in the barn on the back of the range. See for details or call (866)-COG-HILL.



   THE CALLAWAY MACK DADDY WEDGES, Callaway 2018 Coming Soon. Innisbrook Golf Resort Tarpon Springs Florida, A Salamander Resort. The renovated North Course is now open for play. Visit for more information #Copperhead.   _____________________________________________________________________

The Gog Blog by Editor and Director of Content, Rory Spears. In the simulator bay at the Schaumburg Golf Club. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy.

FALL GOLF, it just raced by too fast this year, and while winter might not officially be here yet, but it sure seems like it as Thanksgiving comes to our tables later this week.

What Thanksgiving brings besides some turkey, football and family, is the start of golf dome season.

This Friday the McQ’s Dome in Bolingbrook will tee off the holiday season with a 8 Am Black Friday Sale, that will have plenty of goodies from Mistwood Golf Club. Get there early while the picken’s are good.

The dome is up and running at Links and Tee’s in Addison and also over White Pines in Bensenville. While I have been a visitor to all three domes over the years, you really can’t beat McQ’s, where there is a real triple play.

THE Dome at McQ’s, hit the target.

When owner Jim McWethy bought the former Ditka Dome in Bolingbrook, it was losing money and going in the wrong direction.

McWethy however changed all that by first off creating a top notch indoor golf facility, and bringing his highly respected professional staff over to McQ’s from Mistwood for the winter.

Once the golf dome was up and running, McQ’s Bar and Grill was as well. With plenty of TV’s to catch all the golf and sports action, and a BBQ menu that left nobody hungry, McQ’s has it going. Then you bring an OTB and an opportunity to play the ponies, win a few dollars and have your golf and BBQ on the house and it’s a successful day. When it comes to MCQ’s, it’s a Winner, the Place to be, and it’s a show all year long.

I LOVE Links and Tee’s as well. Charles Sims and his staff at the Addison Park District do a wonderful job, and every year there is something new. New Mats, new range balls, or targets to shoot at. If your in the Addison area, stop at Links and Tee’s on Lake Avenue.

IF YOUR IN BENSENVILLE on your way to the Green Street Grille where you will find former White Pines Golf Dome owner Mike Munro, Munro’s old stomping grounds is yet another place to hit the golf ball during the winter golf season. 37’s the clubs 19th hole is usually open for food and drink.

THERE ARE SOME other domes around, and more clubs are importing simulators to keep their customers on property when the snow is piled up and the cold is lurking outside. The best simulator set up I have seen is at Schaumburg Golf Club, where most of the basement has been redone. Toss in the food from Chandlers Steakhouse upstairs and it’s a winter must eat and play. Schaumburg GC on Roselle where the first phase of the renovation on the club’s 27 holes, is a little grow in time from being done.

If your thinking about new equipment or a winter golf trip, it’s time to get the changes made, or the warm up in before heading south.

Dome Season, yeah it’s here. But I’m still hoping for one more outdoor round of golf in 2017. The Gog Blog returns this week. RS


  THE INNISBROOK RESORT AND GOLF CLUB a Salamander Resort, Tarpon Springs Florida, North Course is now reopened from renovation, see Innisbrookgolf McQ’s Golf Dome in Bolingbrook, Black Friday Sale this Friday 8 AM. ______________________________________________________________________

Aronimink home of the 2020 KPMG Championship and the 2027 PGA Championship. But will host the 2018 BMW Championship next year.

The PGA of America has announced that Aronimink Golf Club in Newtown Square PA. (home of the 2018 BMW Championship) will now host the 2020 KPMG/Women’s PGA Championship and the 2027 PGA Championship.

The club has a long championship golf history. Starting with the 1962 PGA Championship won by Gary Player, and then the 1977 U.S. Amateur that had John Fought as its champion. John Jacobs was the winner of the 2003 PGA Sr. Championship. Justin rose was the champion of the 2010 PGA Tour AT&T National with Nick Watney winning the same tournament in 2011.

With the announcement the Aronimink Golf Club will be come the first club to host all three of the PGA’s rotating major championships.

Danielle Kang won the 2017 KPMG Women’s PGA at Olympia Fields

Danielle Kang winner at Olympia Fields this past summer, will defend her title at Kemper Lakes Golf Club in June of 2018. Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska Minnesota will host the 2019 KPMG Championship before Aronimink steps to the tee.

“The PGA of America is thrilled to return major championship golf to Aronimink Golf Club,” said PGA of America Paul Levy. “We’re certain that the best players in the world both men and women-will be pleased, and, when the time comes, sufficiently challenged by one of America’s special layouts. We’re excited to twice celebrate golf and to plug into the enthusiasm for sport that Philadelphia is famous for.”

Both KPMG Chairman Lynne Doughtie and LPGA Commissioner Michael Whan issued statements of support for the decision of the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship to be held at Aronimink in 2020.

Long before the KPMG CWomen’s PGA Championship arrives in 2020 and the PGA Championship tee’s off in 2027, Aronimink will host the 2018 BMW Championship the third leg of the PGA Tour’s Fed Ex Cup Playoffs, and major fund raiser for the WGA’s Evans Scholars Foundation in September. Mark Leishman who won the BMW this past September at Conway Farms is the defending champion.

The Aronimink golf course was designed by the famed Donald Ross in 1926. During the club’s centennial in 1996 a plaque was unveiled behind the first with a 1948 quote from Ross.

“I intended to make this (club) my masterpiece, but not until today did I realize that I built it better than I knew.”

Follow Golfers on Golf for more details about the 2018 BMW Championship at Aronimink.