Friday, July 28, 2017

How Far Is It? Tees & Yardages at Canal Shores

Canal Shores is not the typical golf course, which is why we love it.  In recent years, we have been taking steps to highlight what is unique about the course, while also cutting through the clutter of modern American golf to the essence of the game - fun.

Our players might have noticed the new scorecard, the design for which was generously donated by Ian Gilley from Sugarloaf Creative Lab.  The card has been simplified, and reflects changes we have been making to course setup.  Click here to view the scorecard.

Canal Shores now only has two tees - back (white) and forward (red).  For a course the length of Canal Shores, three sets of tees was overkill.  Our tees are not intended to be gender or age specific, but rather correspond to skill and strength level.  If you are a beginner or don't hit the ball very far, play up.  If you can get it out there just fine, play back.  Bottom line, have fun.

Tony and his crew have installed CDGA yardage markers on the tees of every hole.  These markers correspond to the back tee yardage on the card, and in some instances are more accurate than the hole signs.

As part of our effort to expand short grass throughout the course, we are now cutting fairways all the way back to the tees.  The 11th, 12th, 15th, 17th, and 18th are already converted with more to come.  The primary purpose of this change to our mowing patterns is to make the course more fun for our players, but there is a secondary benefit.  More short grass in the teeing area allows us to shed the confines of the tee boxes when setting up the course.  Our regular players will find the tees placed in a wider variety of spots, creating new challenges of distance and angle.  To know how long a hole is playing on any given day, simply find the CDGA marker, and pace off to the tee from there.

In the fairways, the red (100 yards) and white (150 yards) markers are also now accurate to the center of the green.

To really take creativity and fun to the next level, feel free to choose your own spot from which to hit your tee shot.  If you don't like our setup, make your own.  If there is a shot that looks like it might be fun to hit, drop a ball and hit it.  As long as our players are safe and courteous to others, it's all good with us.  Again, the bottom line is fun.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Meetings, Meetings, Meetings - Grounds, Board, Eco

The spring and early summer have been keeping us plenty busy.  Dealing with the challenging weather, tuning up the course for our busy season, moving our pilot projects forward, and of course, meetings.  Our apologies for the lack of updates, but we have been busy with progress.

First, a housekeeping item.  Both the Board and Grounds Committee monthly meeting times have changed.  Board meetings are now held on the second Tuesday of each month at 6:30pm at the Legion.  Grounds Committee meetings are now held on the second Saturday of each month at 8:00am.  The standard location for the meeting is the Pro Shop, but we have been holding some meetings at various spots around the course.  Immediately following the Grounds meeting, there is now a work session.  All are welcome at both the Board and Grounds meetings, and we appreciate the support of our work session volunteers.

May 2017 - Board & Grounds

The Grounds committee continues to move forward with neighborhood outreach and volunteerism.  Steve Neumann has successfully recruited several neighborhood Captains to assist us with communication and organizing.  Ecological planning work with Planning Resources, Inc. also moved forward steadily.  Click here for more details in the May Grounds Update.

Our Superintendent Tony Frandria and his crew admirably battled the elements throughout one of the wettest springs on record.  Click here to read Tony's full Superintendent's Report.

The Board meeting was very productive in May, with two key topics covered:

  • As a follow-up to April's First Tee presentation by Lisa Quinn, the Board authorized members of the development team to formally engage the First Tee of Greater Chicago in negotiations to create a youth golf partnership, including a dedicated area for youth practice and play at Canal Shores.
  • Discussions are well underway to formalize the approach to planning for the golf renovation, with a focus on stakeholder outreach.  The Board is resolute, and committed to being methodical and thorough to achieve the best possible outcome for all stakeholders.

June 2017 - Board & Grounds

It was rainy and wet, and then it got sunny and dry.  Tony and his team had a chance to finally catch up on mowing and begin to implement our ideas on grassing lines.  Click here to read Tony's June Superintendent's Report.

At the June meeting, the Board took an important formal step toward renovating the golf course.  A resolution was passed committing to pursuing a Golf Component to our Master Plan, to integrate with the Eco Component that is already in process.  Click here to read the full resolution.  A Golf Planning Committee will be formed and work through formally engaging a golf course architect.

July 2017 - Board & Grounds

With our spring projects largely complete thanks to our staff, neighbors, and volunteers, Tony and his team continue to dial the course in.  The greens have never looked better, and in spite of the challenging weather, the course is shining.  Click here to read Tony's July Superintendent's Report.

The Board meeting focused on plans to take our fundraising efforts to the next level in support of Operations, the Master Planning process, and ultimately, the golf and ecological renovation of the facility.  Near and long term sustainability of Canal Shores is top of mind for our Board, and they are taking action to ensure a solid future for the land and our finances.

The spring and early summer have been filled with progress from a Greens & Grounds perspective, and the future looks very bright.  Stay tuned for updates on or work on grass lines, the Eco plan, the improvements to the 15th hole, and more.