What The ‘Hail’ Was That?

By Bud White, Director, Mid-Continent Region
June 10, 2010

Oklahoma received its share of terrible weather this winter, starting with the devastating bermudagrass winter kill due to significantly freezing temperatures. This spring the area was hit by tornadoes, but, through it all, superintendents were able to quickly get their golf courses back in reasonably good playing condition. Now, to add insult to injury, just as the recovery was underway, a hail storm ravaged much of the Oklahoma City area on May 16, 2010.

The hail devastation damage was extensive as hail stones ranged from golf-ball to baseball size. The morning after the storm had passed, golf course superintendents around the area quickly began to aerate, roll, topdress, and apply extra nitrogen fertilizer to jump-start the turf recovery process. There will be added challenges this summer because of the extra nitrogen fertility and summer heat stress, but the trade-off was necessary to produce some recovery from the hail storm. A short two weeks after the hail damage, the maintenance staffs and golfers were starting to see some of the recovery take hold.

Adversity and Mother Nature can play havoc on a golf course. Thankfully, we have superintendents who meet these challenges head on and make the best from the worst of conditions.

If you would like information about a Turf Advisory Service visit to help you conquer some of your summer turf challenges, contact either of the Mid-Continent regional offices. Bud White, (972) 662-1138 or (budwhite@usga.org) and Ty McClellan, tmcclellan@usga.org or (630) 340-5853. We look forward to being of service to you and your course.

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The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.

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For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.

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IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website, www.usopen.com, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit http://www.usopen.com/IBM

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Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

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Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

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