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Keeping up with the Jones: Home-field advantage

By |  June 7, 2022 0 Comments

All of a sudden, we’re midway through 2022. It’s the busy season for golf, and our biggest battle isn’t making our deadlines; it’s earning your valuable time. This issue pulls off that feat. With so much going on, I’ll skip the chatter and get right to the bullet points because we have some exciting things cooking:

Photo: Seth Jones

Photo: Seth Jones

The Golfdom team has grown by three in recent months. Will that mean more time for your pal Jonesy to get out on the golf course? Probably not … but collectively, we’ll be able to visit more golf courses! Please welcome Digital Editor Sydney Fischer, Managing Editor Jonathan Delozier and Associate Editor Rob DiFranco. Rob has been with the magazine the longest of the three (a grizzled veteran at five months now), and he celebrates the occasion with his first cover story for the magazine. We tasked Rob with the fun assignment of reaching out to a bunch of Friends of Golfdom (FOGs) to ask their opinion on what’s the next big up-and-coming technology for the industry. Those responses, and write-ups with product experts on each, can be found here.

A longtime FOG is Matt Shaffer, legendary in the industry for fast greens and hilarious stories. At the 2022 GCSAA Conference and Show, I asked Matt if he would be interested in writing a column for our humble magazine. His response was typical Shaffer: “I’d do anything for you guys.” Read Matt’s first column here. Good news: Matt writes just like he talks.

Golfdom Publisher, Craig MacGregor, Group Publisher Bill Roddy, Editor Christina Herrick and Editor-in-Chief Seth Jones in the HOJ. (Photo: Golfdom Staff)

Golfdom Publisher, Craig MacGregor, Group Publisher Bill Roddy, Editor Christina Herrick and Editor-in-Chief Seth Jones in the HOJ. (Photo: Golfdom Staff)

Recently, three members of my team traveled from Cleveland to visit me in northeast Kansas. Group Publisher Bill Roddy, Publisher Craig MacGregor and Editor Christina Herrick all made the trip. I showed them my house and office, but we spent most of our time in the Hall of Justice (“The HOJ” for short, my Morton Building-turned-sports-bar.) It was a thrill to host them. Miller Lite was on draft, cheeseburgers were cooked on the Blackstone and the jukebox, as always, was set to free play. The occasion was the 2022 Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association’s (TOCA) annual meeting, held in Kansas City. The conference included a behind-the-scenes tour of Arrowhead Stadium and a giant spread of Joe’s Barbecue at Boulevard Brewery. As cool as it was to stand on the 50-yard-line at Arrowhead, the fondest memory will be the scene in photo three in this month’s Golfdom Gallery. I hope more of my friends in the industry will take the exit off K-10 before entering Lawrence, Kan., so I can get more photos just like that one in future issues.

At the meeting in Kansas City, the annual TOCA awards were handed out. Golfdom nabbed 13 awards in total, including a best-in-show award for our January 2021 cover (’21 at last.) I’m excited we had the Golfdom name called out so many times during the awards ceremony. Maybe I had that home-field advantage working my way? Most of those awards are a group effort, and most of them come to fruition through collaboration with our many FOGs around the country. So, thank you to everyone who helped us achieve success in 2021.

As I stated above, suddenly, we find ourselves midway through 2022… and it feels like we’re off to a good start. We have some fun projects in the works for the remainder of 2022. But as a reminder, if you have a good story in your neck of the woods, let us know. The team is growing, and we have more editors looking to make their mark in the industry.

Oh yeah, my column series, “Keeping up with the Jones,” took second place at TOCA for the third year in a row. I’ll get ’em next year. But not if I keep writing bullet point columns like this one…

About the Author:

Seth Jones, a 18-year veteran of the golf industry media, is Editor-in-Chief of Golfdom magazine and Athletic Turf. A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Jones began working for Golf Course Management in 1999 as an intern. In his professional career he has won numerous awards, including a Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) first place general feature writing award for his profile of World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman and a TOCA first place photography award for his work covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In his career, Jones has accumulated an impressive list of interviews, including such names as George H.W. Bush, Samuel L. Jackson, Lance Armstrong and Charles Barkley. Jones has also done in-depth interviews with such golfing luminaries as Norman, Gary Player, Nick Price and Lorena Ochoa, to name only a few. Jones is a member of both the Golf Writers Association of America and the Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association. Jones can be reached at sjones@northcoastmedia.net.


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