Educating and networking at the Green Start Academy

By |  October 16, 2014 0 Comments

It was a busy day at the Green Start Academy today. Attending assistant superintendents began the day with a trip to the John Deere Turf Care factory, where they saw the nitty gritty of constructing the machines they use daily. The tour detailed the assembly and painting of the equipment, giving assistant superintendents a look behind the curtain. Several could be heard on the bus ride back from the factory discussing aspects of the construction process, jumping from topic to topic.

The John Deere Turf Care factory tour.

The John Deere Turf Care factory tour.

The next stop for the bus was Bayer’s Clayton facility. The technical training center was our main destination for the day. While there, the Green Start Academy schooled assistants on topics ranging from getting the most out of staff to budgets and building business relationships.

Assistant superintendents soak up knowledge during the education sessions at the Green Start Academy.

Assistant superintendents pick up new information during the education sessions at the Green Start Academy.

The educators for this event included Chris Dew (superintendent, The National Golf Club of Canada), Chris Condon (superintendent, Tetherow Golf Club), Bryan Stromme (regional director of agronomy—Midwest/West, Billy Casper Golf), and Bob Farren (director of golf course and grounds management, Pinehurst Resort).

Leaving the classroom behind, the attendees went out onto the grounds for activities and a tour of the facility. Half of the group hopped on trailers, towed by pickup trucks, and took off on the tour while the other half prepped for competition. My section of the group grabbed clubs and began the first of several challenges involving putting, escaping a bunker and breaking panes of glass with one well-placed golf ball. Footgolf was also given a try. The group I was following had a solid kicker up first and he was able to just clear the pond, however few other groups had the same luck. At the end of the day, many a soccer ball was floating around the middle of the pond.

If you look for it, you can see the white soccer ball in the air above the pond. It made it over!

If you look for it, you can see the white soccer ball in the air above the pond. It made it over!

The tour took us around the grounds, stopping at a few key points of interest. Bayer’s Bee Care program was the first stop and highlighted healthy hives living near research plots and test greens. The research plots were yet another stop, where results on recent fungicide testing was discussed.

There was a lot to learn today and a lot of discussion, but I saw the most surprise when it was learned that dinner was a whole pig. That’s right. A whole pig.

The Green Start Academy continues with more education sessions tomorrow. Follow on Twitter by searching #GreenStartAcademy.

For dinner there was a whole pig on the grill.

For dinner there was a whole pig on the grill.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos: Golfdom Staff

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