Good Morning,
The weather has obviously been less than favorable since the golf course opened in March.  It is hard for me to complain too much since the golf course provides a recreational atmosphere for our community and surrounding golfers.  The weather has a major impact on our rural farming community where people’s lives are affected.  When the farming community struggles with Mother Nature it has a negative impact on the golf course, specifically our revenue.
The staff and I have worked very hard to maintain the golf course through all the rain, wind, and below normal temperatures.  Even when the conditions do not allow people to play golf we still have to maintain the golf course.  It’s not always enjoyable working in poor weather or delaying our maintenance practices until evening hours but it is necessary.  I’m proud of the dedication the grounds and maintenance staffs give to our golf course.  It’s definitely not taken for granted.
Outside of equipment and irrigation maintenance along with normal grounds tasks, weed control ranks right up there at the top of the list.  It has been very difficult to spray at all this season.  The only spraying completed has been for crabgrass and broadleaf weed control on our tee boxes.  The rest of the golf course is saturated with dandelions.
Surface drainage and high winds are the main result for providing us with the not so pleasant dandelion population.  This year is the worst I have ever seen.  I treat broadleaf weeds in the spring and fall every year and usually have a very high level of control.  This year will involve multiple applications to control the heavy weed population.
Dandelions seem to be the highest conversation topic at the golf course.  I hear it daily and try my best to educate individuals with concerns.  I always start spraying along the property owners and golf course property.  This helps control the weeds that affect their view as well as the golf course first.
It is impossible to spray during windy conditions or when rain threatens the area.  The herbicide needs to stick to the plant for a minimum of six hours to have any control.  The last day this was possible was Sunday morning when the golf course was booked solid with tee times.  That does not provide an environment that is safe to spray.
Our weather forecast calls for a chance of showers yet this morning and overnight.  After midnight the chance of rain is almost zero (however it can change in a blink of an eye).  I plan to start spraying at 5AM and going until the wind picks up late morning.  This will allow me to cover a lot of territory with little impact on golfers.  It takes me approximately 24 hours to spray the entire golf course which amounts to three eight hour sessions.  I’m hopeful to get as much sprayed as possible before the end of the weekend.
Enjoy the remainder of your week and hopefully we have plenty of sunshine for golfers and our farmers.  Also, keep councilman Rich Prentice in your thoughts and prayers.  “Swing easy when it’s breezy!”


Good Morning,
Another week filled with rain and poor golf weather.  Our revenue has suffered more this year than in the previous two years.  We opened the golf course earlier than the previous two golf seasons, but the rain and cold weather have really limited us financially.  I continue to hope for seven nice golfing days in a row.
Our season passes are at a little over 80% of last season.  Punch cards are also down in comparison to years past.  We still have a little over five weeks left of our current fiscal period.  The weather has to eventually cooperate.
Expenses are also increased in comparison to last year.  There were close to $19,000 in equipment repairs from last fall to two of our rough units.  One of these units was a damaged computer which amounted to a lot of the repair expense.  The good news is our equipment is all functioning properly as I prepare this update.
Irrigation issues have been ongoing the past two seasons.  Last year I replaced around 300 electrical connections in the field to eliminate the wiring part of our problems.  This year the control panel needed several repairs and the 20 year old panel is obsolete.  This amounts to a $5000 control replacement which was completed early this past week.  Also, the lead pump was damaged and bearing replacement is currently being completed.
During repair work on Tuesday, I discovered fishing line and a package of lures caught in the pump impeller.  This is a result of someone illegally fishing on the golf course during non golfing hours.



I have also repaired quite a few valves these past couple of weeks.  When I filled the irrigation system on Monday, after the control panel replacement, everything was working properly except for a handful of valves.  These valves have been repaired and function properly as of the end of the week.  Irrigation is not a major concern, due to the heavy rainfall, but it will be once the rain stops.  The irrigation system repairs are now complete and we are in great shape when the weather turns around.
The heavy rainfalls have been hectic with our maintenance schedules.  Staff and I mowed until dark a couple days this past week to stay on top of everything.  There has also been extra mowing completed this weekend to keep everything upkept.  Even when golf gets rained out it does not mean the course maintenance stops.
The next major task will be tackling the dandelion population on the golf course.  There have been questions when this will happen?  The weather has not permitted for a lot of time to spray.  My plan is to complete the broadleaf applications this coming week.  I always spray along the property owners first to try and accommodate their concerns with weeds present.  Next, I move to the rest of the course.  It generally takes about three days of quality weather to complete this process.  It will be done in a timely matter when the weather cooperates.
Lastly, my job does not consist of 9 to 5 Monday through Friday.  It consists of a lot of early mornings and late evenings seven days a week.  I am the equipment repair technician, spray technician, irrigation technician, clubhouse manager, and golf course superintendent.  My hours fluctuate on a daily basis.  My part time staff hours also fluctuate on a daily basis.  We work during the necessary time slots to get our jobs done and provide a quality golf course for the public.
These golf updates are the easiest way to communicate with public officials, city staff, and the golfing community.  This update is available to our email database, on our website blog, and can also be forwarded to interested people you visit with each day.  I cannot make people read the emails.  I can only provide as much information as possible and try making it as accessible as possible.  I always welcome phone calls or face to face questions at any time.
Please enjoy your Holiday weekend.  The golf course staff and I will be busy trying to provide you all with a quality municipal golf course every day of the week.  Be safe and remember all those who we memorialize this weekend.  They are the heroes that make our day to day life possible.


Good Morning,
I have experienced control panel issues, in the pumphouse, since last fall.  The issues cause the control panel to not function in automatic mode.  The control panel is obsolete and parts can no longer be found.  A new control panel needs to be installed in order for the system to function properly and not require so many night time hours spent visually monitoring in hand mode.
The computer in the maintenance shed is connected to the control panel in the pumphouse.  It controls all functions in the pumphouse.  I am able to operate the irrigation system from my phone through the office computer.  If the system is run in hand mode the computer has no control over shutting down the pumps or controlling the pressure.
I currently must operate in hand mode which causes a threat for damage if the internet goes down.  The pumps would continue to operate with no stations running on the course.  This will cause pump damage and possibly blow up the 6″ intake line.  We lost one of the intake lines last fall and had to replace it early this spring.  The options are replace the control panel for $5000 or pay $1500 to patch it together now and still pay for a new control panel down the road.  The replacement is scheduled for this week.
Additional irrigation work has included multiple valves around the course.  The bleeder assembly snaps on top of the valve and causes the water to flow through the valve and run the irrigation station with no way to shut it down.  I repaired about a dozen of these issues this past week.  There were also several diaphragms replaced on valves.  I will finish a few more stations in the morning and recharge the system.
The greens were fertilized Friday morning with a granular application of 18-9-18.  This is a quick contact fertilizer that breaks down with a 15 minute irrigation cycle.  The timing was perfect with the rainfalls we experienced this weekend.  This will really get the bentgrass growing and improve color.
There are some damaged areas on the greens from surface drainage during the latter part of winter.  With the rainfall and snow melting the surface drainage gathered in low spots on greens and fairways.  These spots have been overseeded and we will continue to monitor the progress.
I have also been completing repairs on several pieces of equipment.  The majority of the issues are small but they still take the machine out of service until the parts arrive.  Our sprayer is one of those items.  I replaced the drain on the bottom of the tank and also ordered new spray nozzles to provide better coverage on the course.  I will finish part installation on the sprayer, one green mower, and two fairway units in the morning.
This is a wrap on another week at the golf course.  Enjoy the remainder of the weekend.  Best of luck to the SHS boys golf team as they compete at state this coming week!!


A quick update at the ol’ golf course on a Tuesday morning.  I have experienced control panel issues, in the pumphouse, since last fall.  These issues are causing the control panel to not function in automatic mode.  The control panel is also 20 years old (I cannot believe we have had the 18 holes for almost 20 years now).  It is obsolete and parts can no longer be found.  A new control panel needs to be installed in order for the system to function properly and not require so many night time hours spent visually monitoring in hand mode.
I currently am only able to operate in hand mode, which causes a great threat for damage if the internet goes down.  The pumps would continue to operate with no stations running on the course.  This will cause pump damage and possible blow up the 6″ intake line.  We already lost one of the intake lines last fall and had to replace it early this spring.  This will be about a $5000 hit to the budget.  Replacement is scheduled for next week.
Until then I will irrigate greens and tees starting around 3 AM as needed.  This will allow me to be on site and monitor the system to ensure there is no damage caused if the computers shut down.  Rainfall has currently eliminated the need for a lot of irrigating.  I did irrigate in hand mode Saturday morning to water in the herbicide treatment on tees for crabgrass prevention.
Also, we are at the time of year when the dandelions start popping.  I will be spraying for broadleaf weeds as time and weather permit.  It will probably be necessary to spray in the late evening into the night if conditions are favorable.  The material needs to be on the plant for at least 6-8 hours to make sure it is absorbed to provide proper control.
The greens are coming along pretty nicely with the warmer temperatures.  The color is improving.  We will be fertilizing greens with a granular application yet this week.
I felt like this information needed to be shared prior to the regular weekend update.  Enjoy the remainder of the week and keep on keepin’ on!   Good luck to the high school boys Thursday.  They are playing districts at the Country Club Thursday morning.  Hopefully the boys all golf well and make it to STATE!



The week started off great with 86 senior golfers enjoying a late morning lunch followed by 18 holes of golf.  This was the first senior golfing date of the 2019 golf season.  We provide lunch and golf four times a season for two different men’s senior groups.  Thankfully the weather cooperated and the day was a success.  This was the last nice day until Friday.
Yesterday we hosted 24 high school seniors in the morning and 24 more in the afternoon.  They played for two hours during each session.  This date is the annual senior skip day for the high school.  They line up activities for the kids to participate in throughout the day.  The great part of this day was a silent donor paid for the golf and cart rental for each of the high school students.  That was such a great act of kindness and the students really appreciated it.
Our parking lot continues to be a weekly discussion.  We used a drag from the park department to address both of our parking lots.  Tuesday was the first day and it worked great.  The clubhouse parking lot looked as close to normal as possible.  The Wednesday rainfall brought us back to reality.  On Friday the parking lots were dragged again and seem to be drying out.  This will continue to be addressed multiple times each week.
We continue to hand topdress several of the greens.  The main area is #17 where we experienced lost turfgrass at the start of the 2018 season.  Last year we added 450+ plugs throughout this green.  Overseeding was also done four times with limited success due to the heavy downpours.  It is finally looking really good and the topdressing is helping fill in the small areas that remain.  This topdressing is applied several times during the week.
Our greens still remain an off color and don’t look real good.  The cold temperatures really zap the life out of bentgrass especially the Providence variety we have at the muni.  The warm weather and a granular fertilizer application will help bring them back to life this coming week.
I sprayed all the tee boxes with a herbicide to control the presence of crabgrass.  i also added a herbicide to control the dandelions and other broadleaf weeds growing on the tees.  The broadleaf weeds need to absorb the herbicide and the crabgrass control needs to be irrigated into the upper part of the soil to eliminate the germination of the crabgrass.  I started the irrigation system around 4 AM to get these tees watered before we start getting golfers.
You’re receiving this email one day early due to my dad’s Christmas present.  My brothers and I bought him two tickets to the NASCAR Kansas race last year.  This year we planned on the same gift but he said he wanted all three of us to go to the race with him.  So, we are leaving in about an hour to drive to Ankeny to meet both my brothers followed by a drive to Kansas City.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the ladies that keep their households running smoothly.  You are all appreciated and honored more than one day a year.  Being a mother has to be the hardest job in the world.  Not only do you take care of your children but us men need to be guided as well.  Enjoy the weekend ladies and thank you for everything you do!


Good Morning,
This morning we are attempting the four person best shot that was scheduled last Sunday.  I moved the event to this Sunday due to the snow and cold weather last weekend.  As on now there are 18 teams signed up for the event.  I am hoping we pick up a few more since the weather appears to be nice.
Early in the week I opened the main lines of the irrigation system.  I had the usual 10-12 bleeder valve assemblies with broken tops off of the valve.  This causes water to pass through the valve and run the irrigation heads on that line.  This is a common occurrence each spring.  The snow melt and rain fill the valve boxes with water, cold temperatures follow, and the water turns to ice causing the plastic top to snap off the bleeder valve.
I also adjusted quite a few stations on the computer to decrease the irrigation times during a night time schedule.  There are still several adjustments that will be made to valves, some solenoids will be replaced, and a few canisters are cracked.  All of these issues will be resolved this coming week.
We were able to overseed areas on fairways #1, #2, #9, #16, #17, and #18.  It will take some time for this seed to start germinating due to the cooler soil temperatures.  Once the soil temperature gets near 60 degrees it will take close to ten days for the seed to germinate.  We mowed these fairways in the afternoon on Friday.  Mowing while the conditions are dry allows the reels to pass over the seed and not pick it up on the rollers.  Once we see some germination these areas will not be mowed until the turf is strong enough to handle the stress.
There are some damaged areas on #3 and #8 greens that were overseeded this past week as well.  These are low lying spots on the greens where all the surface drainage puddled and turned to ice.  It caused some damage to the bentgrass which might limit the amount of recovery.  We spiked these areas and added bentgrass seed which was dragged into the slits.  This seed will germinate in less than seven days when the soil temperature increases.  These areas will also be skipped until the bentgrass can handle the stress.