Golf Tip – Get Your Putting Touch Back After Winter

Tony Tinetti Bonnie BrookBy Tony Tinetti, PGA Professional, Bonnie Brook Golf Course After a long winter like the one that we just suffered through, it is very difficult to get your golf game back in shape. The hardest thing to get back may be your putting touch. Here is a quick drill to help you with that. Take 3 balls and put them on the putting surface about 20 feet from the fringe. Your goal is to putt the ball so to make it stop right at the edge of the fringe. Make a couple of practice swings and then step up to the ball, put your putter behind it and just before you take your putter back, close your eyes. (more…)

It Ziems To Me: Getting No. 1 Seed Gives U.S. Boost For International Crown

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm

There's a drawback to designating one prime superstar in a sport. That policy can work to the detriment of others, and that's what happened this week, when Tiger Woods announced he wouldn't play in this year's Masters. In this case the victim was the LPGA, which had its own big news to unveil at its first major championship of the season. (more…)

It Ziehms To Me: Georgia’s Summer Grove Course Could Be Called Jemsek South

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm

NEWNAN, Ga. - It's no secret that the Jemseks are the first family of golf in Chicago. In fact, it's been that way for a long time.

It all started when Joe Jemsek purchased St. Andrews, in West Chicago in the 1930s. He later bought Cog Hill, in Lemont, and expanded it from 36 to its present 72 holes. [caption id="attachment_1835" align="alignright" width="251"] A cheery welcome greets golfers when they arrive at Summer Grove.[/caption] The Jemseks are now three generations deep in Chicago golf. For years the family operated Glenwoodie, in Glenwood, and - in addition to Cog Hill and St. Andrews -the Jemseks also operate Pine Meadow, in Mundelein. But the family's golf involvement isn't limited to the Chicago area. Though it's not widely known, the Jemseks also have a course in Georgia – and it’s one that in some ways has more family involvement than the Chicago layouts. (more…)

Springtime = Discounts At Top Area Courses

By Jim Zuccarelli April is one of my favorite times of the year to golf, as the lengthy Chicago winters always have me anxious to dust off the clubs, and I love taking advantage of the spring discounts offered by many of the top courses, a great way to play some of the best the area has to offer at an excellent price.  With a few notable exceptions (ThunderHawk 4/23 and Mistwood 4/25), most every course in the Windy City area has opened for play, but the historically severe winter of 2014 has taken its toll on the turf and several facilities have extended the spring rates to the end of the month and into early May to account for the conditions. (more…)

Why Am I Not Getting Better?

Jay casalettoBy Jay Casaletto, PGA Director - Golf Channel Am Tour-Chicago How many of you have heard these phrases before: "I don't understand why I didn't score better, I was hitting the ball so well at the range" or "The way you practice is the way you play in the game".  If the latter is true, it is no wonder why most of us don't get any better at golf. (more…)

It Ziehms to Me: Economic downturn hasn’t hurt Kiawah

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. - With so many golf facilities struggling these days, Roger Warren's report on the popular Kiawah Resort is eye-catching to say the least. "We had the best year in the history of the resort last year," said Warren who left the Chicago area for Kiawah in 2003 and has been the resort's president since 2005. "There was a halo effect from (hosting the 2012) PGA Championship, but we experienced four years of double digit growth from 2009 on." [caption id="attachment_609" align="alignleft" width="300"]Roger Warren has plenty of good memories from his recent Ryder Cup experiences. Roger Warren has plenty of good memories from his recent Ryder Cup experiences.[/caption] Why is that? “I know it flies in the face of what's happening in the rest of the game, but there's a segment in this country that's doing just fine - and that's my customer," said Warren. "They continue to come here. This is a beautiful island, and there's a lot to do here." This five-course facility near Charleston, S.C., doesn't need a commercial after already hosting an historic Ryder Cup (in 1991) and a major - the PGA, won by Rory McIlroy. Its Pete Dye-designed Ocean Course has witnessed it all. (more…)

It Ziehms To Me: International Crown trophy will be impressive

Len Ziehm on GolfBy Len Ziehm DAYTONA BEACH, FL. - I'll let you in on a secret. The trophy that will go to the winner of the LPGA's biggest-ever event will be one of the most impressive in all of sports. I received a sneak preview of the prize that the players in the new International Crown event will play for in July during my first visit to LPGA headquarters here (photo below). No pictures of the trophy or descriptions of it were allowed then, and the trophy won't be officially unveiled until April 1 at the Kraft Nabisco Championship. (more…)

House Rules

Eric Aldrichby Eric Aldrich, PGA Head Golf Professional Bolingbrook Golf Club What excites us about getting up at sunrise and carving out at least six hours of our day to play a sport that continually beats us up?  And how does this same sport keep us coming back for more?  Is it the exercise?  The fellowship?  The competition?  It surely isn't enjoyment, is it?  How can we possibly take pleasure in playing something so difficult and something that takes so long to play?  But in the end, and at the detriment of future golfers, golf must be enjoyed.  But how?  One of the best ways to enjoy the game of golf more - Don't play by the rules. (more…)

Golf on Florida’s Treasure Coast isn’t just for the touring pros

By Len Ziehm PORT ST. LUCIE, FL. - Florida's Treasure Coast embraces three counties - Martin, Palm Beach and St. Lucie. Add the surrounding areas and the golf options in this east coast area are numerous, diverse and competitively priced. That's why so many tour players make this their offseason home. Tiger Woods, Dustin Johnson, Ricky Fowler and Nick Price are among 16 present or past tour players who are members at Medalist in Hobe Sound. Luke Donald, Rory McIlroy, Keegan Bradley, Ernie Els and Camilo Villegas play at The Bears Club in Jupiter and Greg Norman, Russ Cochran and Scott Langley are at The Dye Preserve - another Jupiter club. Old Palm, in Palm Beach Gardens, includes Lee Westwood, Louis Oosthuizen, Charl Schwartzel, Darren Clarke and Raymond Floyd. Even President Barack Obama has visited the area's links; he made a weekend vacation trip to The Floridian in Palm City. (more…)

New Twilight Rate Available at Dubsdread in 2014

By Jim Zuccarelli 6th Hole Cog HillCog Hill Golf & Country Club, the 72 hole public golf facility in southwest suburban Lemont, recently unveiled their greens fee schedule for  the 2014 season, and new for this year is a twilight rate on the #4 course, the iconic Dubsdread.  Beginning at 4 pm each day, a round can be played for $100 (including cart and range access), a 35% discount from the normal rate of $155. "It was my daughter's idea" stated owner Frank Jemsek, referring to Cog Hill President Katherine, "and we wanted to give golfers who might not be able to afford the regular rate an opportunity to experience the #4 course." In the height of the summer (mid-June to mid-July), the first few twilight times have a good chance of completing the round, so as many as 500 additional golfers can play 18 holes on a course that has held 20 PGA tour events and have some extra dollars left for a drink afterwards. (more…)