It Ziehms to Me: WWGA honors two of its long-time leaders

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm Long before there was a Ladies Professional Golf Assn. there was the Women's Western Golf Assn. This organization has spearheaded golf for girls and women since 1901. This week the WWGA honored two of its longstanding leaders. Susan Wagner and Audrey Peterson were presented with Woman of Distinction Awards at the WWGA's annual meeting at Sunset Ridge Country Club in Northfield, IL. [caption id="attachment_829" align="alignright" width="225"]Susan Wagner has represented the WWGA on the public relations and media side. Susan Wagner has represented the WWGA on the public relations and media side.[/caption] Both are extremely deserving of this recognition. Between the two of them they've spent over 70 years volunteering their time, energy and talent to both the WWGA and its Foundation, which has awarded academic scholarships for the past 43 years. Over the years the program has distributed over $3.35 million to 600 scholars from 45 states. Wagner, formerly of Flossmoor and now living in Florida, has been a WWGA director since 1977, when the Western Amateur tournament was held at her home club. In recent years she has served as the WWGA's national public relations and media director. She was the organization's president in 1997-98. (more…)

It Ziehms to Me: Flower Hole is still golf’s most beautiful

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm When you visit the SentryWorld course in Stevens Point, WI., there’s always the temptation to get overwhelmed by its world-renowned Flower Hole. I've seen lots of beautiful golf holes, but No. 16 at SentryWorld remains my choice as the most beautiful. SentryWorld Hole 16 SunsetThe course opened in 1982 and was recently renovated by Robert Trent Jones Jr. in collaboration with Bruce Charlton and Jay Blasi. I’d planned to make the unveiling of the renovated layout, but it was rained out. (more…)

It Ziehms to Me: Dancing Rabbit, Tunica National are Mississippi’s hot spots

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm CHOCTAW, MS. - Determining the best golf options in your first visit to an area isn't easy. We faced that situation in our first-ever visit to the state of Mississippi, and I don't think we could have made any better selections. The state has less than 200 courses, but the ones we found were all top of the line. [caption id="attachment_821" align="alignnone" width="584"]Dancing Rabbit's clubhouse Dancing Rabbit’s clubhouse has everything, including eight rooms for lodging.[/caption] (more…)

Handa Cup: Will Inkster’s debut get U.S. back on winning track?

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm WEST POINT, MS. — This week in golf isn't all about the Ryder Cup. The LPGA Legends Tour will have its premier team event, the ISPS Handa Cup, going on at the same time. [caption id="attachment_815" align="alignnone" width="584"]Old Waverly’s majestic clubhouse provides an attractive setting for the Handa Cup. Old Waverly’s majestic clubhouse provides an attractive setting for the Handa Cup.[/caption] (more…)

New finishing holes enhance Michigan’s Crooked Tree

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm PETOSKEY, MI. - Boyne Resorts may be best known for skiing nationwide, but golf has never been just an afterthought. That was clearly evident this season when Boyne undertook two major projects simultaneously on its Michigan courses. [caption id="attachment_807" align="alignnone" width="584"]Crooked Tree’s No. 16 offers a spectacular view of Little Traverse Bay from the tee. (All photos courtesy of Boyne Golf). Crooked Tree’s No. 16 offers a spectacular view of Little Traverse Bay from the tee. (All photos courtesy of Boyne Golf).[/caption] (more…)

Countdown is on for Par-3 national team tourney

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm GAYLORD, MI. - The northern Michigan community of Gaylord has 17 golf courses, all of them quite good. It's one of the best places you can go if you're looking for a golf-getaway destination. I should know. I've probably visited the area 10 times over the last two decades. This year, though, there's something new going on. In mid-July the Treetops Resort introduced the National Par-3 Team Championship. [caption id="attachment_798" align="alignright" width="300"]This spot on Threetops’ No. 7 tee was where Lee Trevino hit the most lucrative shot in golf in 2001 — a hole-in-one at the green far below. This spot on Threetops’ No. 7 tee was where Lee Trevino hit the most lucrative shot in golf in 2001 — a hole-in-one at the green far below.[/caption] It'll run through Sept. 27, but you can expect to hear more about it because this first version has been deemed a success and it's not even over yet. Jim McGuigan, head golf professional at Treetops North Resort, reported that 81 two-man teams had entered in the first six weeks of the event. Most were all male, but there are no restrictions. (more…)

Course Review – Downer’s Grove Golf Course

By Jim Zuccarelli [caption id="attachment_776" align="alignleft" width="300"]1st Hole Downers Grove Golf Couse 1st Hole Downers Grove Golf Couse[/caption] After turning from Haddow Avenue into the parking lot of the Downers Grove Golf Club, it quickly became apparent that this course is extremely proud of its important link to American golf history. Established in 1892 as the original home of the Chicago Golf Club, the addition of nine holes the following year made it America’s first 18-hole course, and the signage at the entrance, the front of the scorecard and every nook and cranny of the prairie style clubhouse reinforces these facts. Founder and architect Charles Blair Macdonald moved the club to a new site in Wheaton in 1895, and that resulting course still exists as one of the most exclusively private and revered courses on the planet (currently ranked 26th on Golf Digest's World rankings). (more…)

It Ziehms to Me: Lawsonia may be in Wisconsin, but its roots are in Chicago

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm GREEN LAKE, Wis. - Shame on me. This golf writer of nearly 50 years didn't know nearly enough about the work of William Langford until playing in last week's Langford Shield outing at The Links of Lawsonia. The course got its name from the legendary newspaperman Victor Lawson. He was the publisher of the Chicago Daily News prior to his death in 1925, and The Links of Lawsonia was built on a three-hour drive from Chicago near the small college town of Ripon. [caption id="attachment_785" align="alignleft" width="300"]There’s reportedly a boxcar under the No. 7 green at The Links of Lawsonia. The elevation it created makes for a most interesting par-3. There’s reportedly a boxcar under the No. 7 green at The Links of Lawsonia. The elevation it created makes for a most interesting par-3.[/caption] Langford was a Chicago golf architect and very prominent in his profession. He and partner Theodore Moreau were the course designers. The Links of Lawsonia course didn't open until 1930, and it has had a partner course, Woodlands, since 1985. It was designed by Rocky Roquemore, who participated in the design of Cog Hill's Dubsdread course in Lemont. (more…)

Cog Hill #4 Lives Up to the “Dubsdread” Reputation

By Jim Zuccarelli Cog Hill 4 3rd HoleI felt a touch of nervous excitement as I stood on the 1st tee at Cog Hill #4, the fearsome "Dubsdread" course that has hosted 20 PGA tour events since 1991.  It's been many years since I last visited, but "Dubs" was an annual stop before the notoriety, and the subsequent increase in greens fees, exceeded my golf budget.  But the $100 twilight rate that the Jemsek family offered for 2014 convinced me that it was time to make a return.  My first swing produced a weak drive down the right side of the dogleg left par 4, but a solidly struck 4 wood, a chip to 10 feet and a barely missed par putt and the subsequent tap in bogey had me off to a decent start.  But after one hole, it was apparent that this was not the same course that I had filed in my memory. (more…)