FORMER MEDINAH PRO MIKE SCULLY TO HEAD STREAMSONG GOLF

THE MISTWOOD GOLF DOME on Rt. 53 in Bolingbrook is open daily until 10 PM. So drop in to practice on Toptracer or get lessons. Maybe it’s time for new clubs, if so Mistwood is the place to be fitted. See Mistwoodgolfdome.com or call (630)-739-7600.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

Mike Scully is now at Streamsong in Florida.

BREAKING NEWS ***

Former Medinah Country Club professional Mike Scully is on the move back to Florida.

Scully has taken over as director of Golf at the Streamsong Resort in between Orlando and Tampa Florida.

After leaving the NFL, Scully started his golf career in Florida before heading to Medinah. Scully is a native of Mt. Prospect IL. and played college football at Illinois.

Scully was part of the 1984 Illinois Rose Bowl Team.

After Medinah, Scully headed to Desert Mountain in Arizona. Then to Greensboro Ga. at Reynolds Lake Oconee, before stops in both Colorado and Las Vegas.

Scully said on a LinkedIn post he is “thrilled to be a part of the Kemper Sports Team at Streamsong.”

THE STREAMSONG RED AND BLUE CLUBHOUSE (L) and the 18 green on the Black Course by Gil Hanse.

Details on Streamsong at Streamsongresort.com Operated by Northbrook Based Kemper Sports management.

CDGA OPENS CHAMPIONSHIP REGISTRATION FOR 2022

  THE SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB AT 401 NORTH ROSELLE ROAD is a year round golf operation. Because now you can play the Schaumburg Golf Club in the simulator when it’s cold out. So stock up in the pro shop on golf supplies or chow down with some of the best burgers in all of Schaumburg at Chandlers Chophouse. (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

CDGA.org

The Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) has announced that the 2022 championship season, is now open for registration.

2022 marks the 109th year of running area championships. There will be eight gross championships, and numerous qualifiers.

This summer from July 19-21 will be the 91st Illinois State Amateur Championship at Westmoreland Country Club in Wilmette.

But in June is the 102nd CDGA Amateur at the Glen Flora Country Club in Waukegan, will be held from June 27-30.

But the other six championships are catered toward mid-amateur players (ages 25 and up) or senior events (age 55 and up). The four-ball event is open to all ages. Any player with a handicap of 10.4 or less is eligible to register.

CDGA will be holding a full series of social competitions, those registrations will begin on January 31st. But all CDGA events will be held under Covid-19 policies. First on the tee for the season will be the CDGA Mid Amateur Championship May 16-18 at Naperville Country Club.

But for full schedule details or to register for qualifiers please visit CDGA.org.

TITLEIST LAUNCHES NEW AVX GOLF BALL

IT’S TIME TO LOAD UP ON GOLF SUPPLIES FOR THE 2022 GOLF SEASON. Golf bags, apparel golf balls and more. So why not stop at the Schaumburg Golf Club on 401 North Roselle Road and visit the pro shop. Coming next month the new Titleist AVX golf ball. Call the pro shop and book a simulator, or grab a bite at Chandlers Chophouse with some of the best burgers in town. SchaumburgGolf.com or call (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

THE NEW TITLEIST AVX golf ball-coming Feb. 4th to a retail store or pro shop near you.

THEY ARE BACK and now better than ever before.

Because Titleist is relaunching the newly improved AVX Golf Ball, that first came onto the market in 2018.

The new AVX ball made at it’s Ball Plant 3 in new Bedford MA., will be available on February 4th, for a cost of $49.99 a dozen.

New AVX features include better short game spin and control, increased distance off the driver, with a softer feel. But the AVX has upped it’s game with new advancements. If your a golfer that wants an extremely soft feel, with a urethane cover, AVX is the ball for you.

“Flight, Spin and Feel are the three key performance attributes we evaluate during our green-to-tee fittings and golf ball selection,” said Frederick Waddell, Director of Golf Ball Product Management, Titleist. “AVX provides low flight, low spin, exceptionally soft feel alternative to Pro V1 or Pro V1x. With these three golf balls, plus Pro V1x Left Dash, every golfer that prioritizes performance can now find a precise fit for their game.”

Waddell does add that the new AVX adds better short game performance with it’s softer cover. But it’s new core formulation adds speed and aerodynamics for better stability and distance. AVX now comes with 7 dimple sizes.

The new AVX comes in both white or optic yellow colors. It will be available in golf shops worldwide on February 4th of 2022. But you can get your AVX customized by ordering through Titleist, at titleist.com/custom.

But Titleist does encourage golfers to be fit no matter what Titleist ball they play. So to be fitted, use the online golf ball selection tool. Golf ball internship program. Virtual consultations or Tour Level Fitting. But for more information, please visit Titleist.com.

JOE DESCH STARTS AS WESTERN GOLF ASSOCIATION CHAIRMAN

NOW IS THE TIME TO GET YOUR GOLF GAME READY FOR 2022. So go visit the Schaumburg Golf Club at 401 North Roselle Road. Practice in the simulator, get the needed supplies in your new golf bag. Chow down at Chandlers Chophouse, some of the best burgers in Schaumburg. Visit SchaumburgGolf.com or call (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on twitter @GogBlogGuy, or connect with him on LinkedIn/Facebook.

WGA Chairman Joe Desch portraits photographed on Thursday Dec. 16, 2021 ©Charles Cherney Photography

The Western Golf Association (WGA) has announced that Joe Desch has started his two-year term as Chairman.

Desch is a member of Maketewah Country Club in Cincinnati, Moraine Country Club in Dayton Ohio, and Kiawah Island Club in Kiawah Island South Carolina. He replaces Kevin Buggy of the Park Ridge Country Club in Illinois.

Desch grew up caddying at the Dayton Country Club, and became an Evans Scholar, he attended Miami University.

“I’m honored by the opportunity to lead the WGA, an organization that has been a significant part of my family’s life,” Desch said. “It has not only been transformative in the lives of countless young men and women, but also in the game of golf. Our prestigious championships are best-in-class, and the Evans Scholars Foundation continues to provide life-changing opportunities for thousands of caddies, just as it did for me and my brothers.”

Desch has been a WGA director since 2001, and has been the WGA State Chairman in Ohio, and led some 50 WGA Directors in raising funds, awareness and caddie opportunities across the state.

During an interview with Golfers on Golf that covered a variety of topics, Desch made it clear the WGA will continue to be a more diverse organization as it moves forward and continues to expand. In recent years the WGA had a strong push to reach the goal of 1,000 caddies a year attending college. But now that that goal has been reached, what’s next.

Desch described the next long term goal as 1,500 caddies, a number the WGA expects to reach by the end of the decade. But the challenge is not just getting the caddies into college. But it’s putting them together under one roof in an Evans Scholars House, on the campus they attend.

What campus will that be ? Desch explained there are schools the WGA is in contact with to be the next schools to welcome the WGA and the Evans Scholars. But the days of just sending Evans Scholars to Midwest Big Ten schools are fading. Because the WGA will be making it presence felt on the East Coast, the West Coast and across the country.

The WGA runs golf championships, not just the BMW Championship on the PGA Tour Tour. But amateur tournaments as well. Now under the WGA’s umbrella is the Women’s Western Golf Association (WWGA). Desch would like to see WWGA champions get exempted into events like the USGA Women’s Amateur, and the Augusta Women’s Amateur, where the WGA is working to get 2021 WWGA Amateur champion Marissa Wenzler exempt into the Augusta field.

USGA CEO Michael Whan grew up golfing with Desch in Ohio, after Whan’s family moved there from Naperville Illinois. So Desch is hoping for a new level of the USGA and WGA working together, for the betterment of the game.

CLICK HERE to hear the full interview with new WGA Chairman Joe Desch.

Desch is excited about the new level of commitment from BMW during the WGA’s PGA Tour event. The WGA is now working towards a possible WGA/LPGA event. This would expand the WGA’s reach into women’s professional golf.

In 2024 Desch’s club in Dayton-Moraine Country Club will host the 2024 Western Amateur. The classic 90 year old golf course, now resides on multiple Top 100 classic course lists.

During Desch’s next two years as WGA Chairman, he will lead the drive to pay it forward. As the Western Golf Association continues to move forward.

THE GOG BLOG SPEAKS OUT-LAUNCH AND GOLF DELAYED

SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB is open daily as one of the Chicago area’s year round golf operations. Because you can golf Schaumburg Golf Club outside and inside on days like this in the winter. Schaumburg Golf Club is available on the simulators inside in the clubhouse year round. But there is more. How about a new bag, shirt, shoe or golf balls to be ready for golf season. Chandlers Chophouse in the clubhouse is open daily. So why not book your simulator bay at Schaumburggolf.com or phone (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect with him on LinkedIn/Facebook.

With the new Callaway Rogue Driver at the Mistwood Golf Dome in Bolingbrook. Book a hitting bay at Mistwoodgolfdome.com or call (630)-739-7600

I WAS SUPPOSED TO BE on the road, probably in Ohio already. But my take-off for Florida has been delayed.

The weather in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia is not expected to be very good.

Rainy, snowy and cold temperatures in the south have ruined plans for some site visits and rounds of golf. I guess that will happen on the way home from the upcoming PGA Show. But the good news is that by the weekend I will be in Florida. Temperatures for show week will be in the middle to upper 60’s. Not great. But better than the Chicago area. 60 about now would probably feel like 75.

LES… Yes long time Chicago sportscaster Les Grobstein was a great friend and I’m sorry he has passed away at age 69. But Les had not felt well for several days before his passing.

IF YOUR WONDERING Les did play golf. Not often and not very well. But he had an old set of clubs that he would lug out to various charity tournaments on rare occasion and tee it up. Les would go out and cover the Illinois Open when he was at WLS 890 and DJ Larry Lujack was in the field. One time Lujack was in a bunker and Grobstein was live on the air-describing the super-jocks lie. But Lujack heard him and said Les lets not make it any worse than it is. #RIPLes you will be missed.

GOING ROGUE-I will have more on this at a later date. But I did attend the Callaway Golf fitting day last week at the Mistwood Golf Dome in Bolingbrook. I got to hit the new Rogue Clubs just coming out. But golfers who have ordered already, will see their clubs next month. It’s not that way with all brands. Stay tuned for more on Rogue in the days ahead.

IT WAS NICE TO SEE the new hotel at Island Resort & Casino in the UP of Michigan has opened. 11 more floors and 138 new rooms, great to have when your waiting list is 150-200 people every weekend. Sweetgrass and Sage Run are both good golf courses as well. Take the drive up and go play.

The Gog Blog returns tomorrow. RS

THE GOG BLOG’S SUNDAY MORNING SHORT GAME-NEWS COLUMN

UPPER LEVEL OR LOWER LEVEL THE MISTWOOD GOLF DOME is upgraded for the current indoor golf season. So see the improvements upstairs in the hitting bays, or downstairs in the short game area’s. Mistwood Golf Dome is on Rt. 53 in Bolingbrook, call (630)-739-7600 or visit Mistwoodgolfdome.com. Lessons, Toptracer and fittings. You can also grab a bite and beverage in McWethy’s Sportsbar-enjoy the tasty wings.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter at GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn and Facebook.

The Schaumburg Golf Club is home to Chandlers Chophouse at 401 North Roselle Road in Schaumburg.

The Schaumburg Golf Club is one of the Chicago area year round golf operations.

In the summer play all 27 holes of the renovated Schaumburg Golf Club. But in the winter you can play those same 27 holes indoors on the simulators.

The clubs pro shop that’s open daily will allow you to stock up on golf supplies and apparel for the outdoor season ahead. So book your hitting bay online or call the pro shop at (847)-885-9000.

LEN ZIEHM has posted a posted a book review, of Tom Coyne’s “A Golf Course called America.” Check out Len’s review at LenZiehmongolf.com. Coyne is also the author of a book on golf in Scotland.

WILLOWBROOK BASED CLUB CHAMPION has now grown over the border and into Canada. Club Champion has announced they have acquired Tour Experience Golf (TXG Golf) a Canadian Club fitter, thus allowing Club Champion to expand it’s operation north of the border. TXG has been in business since 2016. But both companies say they have had a mutual level of respect for each other. More details can be found online at Clubchampiongolf.com.

The new look to Island Resort Casino Hotel in Escanaba Michigan, in the Upper Peninsula.

THE ISLAND RESORT and CASINO in Escanaba Michigan, has announced the completion of a $33 million dollar expansion to it’s hotel.

Island Resort is home to two great golf courses, both Sweetgrass and Sage Run.

The new hotel that is connect to the south end of the 11 story Palm Tower, opened on New Years Eve.

This new hotel has 138 guest rooms and suites, and is home to the Horizons Steak House, located on the top floor of the hotel. The new guest room offerings include golf and spa suites, with hot tubs and options for in-room messages.

“This expansion is a fantastic addition for us,” says Tony Mancilla, General Manager of the Island Resort and Casino. “It was developed out of necessity. Our demand and backlog of guests who wanted to get in on weekend was over whelming. Waiting lists had reached 150-200 people on weekends. But it showed us how much we needed more rooms. For golfers there are suites with views of the Sweetgrass golf course behind the hotel.

The resort now has new golf packages that are currently being booked for 2022. For more details visit Islandresortgolf.com.

The new Srixon Z-Star Diamond Ball. coming Jan. 21

SRIXON a leader in golf ball design, has announced the release coming on Jan. 21st of it’s new Z-Star Diamond golf ball.

The new Z-Star will retail for $44.99 per dozen.

“The Z-Star is a game changer for me,” says four-time major champion Brooks Koepka. “This golf ball was a major driver in joining Srixon and it’s been a seamless transition. Because the performance is really impressive, and I feel confident with it heading into the new tour season.”

Koepka put the ball in play during his win in “The Match” over Bryson DeChambeau.

“By working closely with our global Tour staff, we created the Z-Star DIAMOND ball as an enhancement to our premium tour lineup” said Jeff Brunski, Vice President of Research and Development at Srixon. “The Z-Star DIAMOND is something of a best-of-both-worlds type product, blending in many of our two current models. Like the Z-Star XV, the Z-Star DIAMOND that produces really good ball speed and distance. But thanks to it’s slightly thicker cover, the Z-Star Diamond features exceptional spin and control on approach shots.”

Some of the new technologies are the FastLayer Core, SpinSkin with SeRM and back is the 338 dimple pattern. So learn more at Srixon.com.

The Srixon Z-Star Divide golf ball. Release date Jan. 21 and retail price $44.99.

MORE FROM SRIXON GOLF.

Srixon is also announcing the release of another new golf ball, the DIVIDE.

DIVIDE has two models the Z-Star Divide and the Z-Star XV Divide. The balls launch on January 17th, and sell for $44.99 a dozen.

The Divide will be sold in both Yellow and White colors.

Both the performance and the visual colors that will stand out on the golf course, have Srixon General Manager Brian Schielke excited. “They will be easy to align your putts with, along with seeing them fly through the air.” DIVIDE will have the popular features found on the Z-Star line, such as SpinSkin with SeRM a thermoplastic urethane cover, with a 338 dimple pattern. See Srixon.com

XXIO announces the newest generation of lightweight clubs. But also announces the release of it’s new golf ball the Rebound Drive-available Feb. 11th for $49.99 a dozen. On the club side the XXIO X clubs will be released on Feb. 11th., they are lightweight and bring more to the course than their previous models. XXIO.com for more details.

           THE NEW ZERO FRICTION PULL CART and the ZERO FRICTION tee’s that are now the official tee of demo day-at the 2022 PGA Merchandise show next week in Orlando.

“This is not your typical golf bag. Our new Wheel Pro Push Cart bag is a three-in-one product. It’s a carry stand bag that quickly and simply converts to a push cart or can be put on the back of a motor cart,” said John Iacono, founder and President of Oak Brook Terrace based Zero Friction. “And it only weights 10 pounds.”

The Wheel Pro has a single strap, six full length dividers and seven zipper pockets. But it also has an umbrella holder and bag head cover. It comes in black/gray or gray/black and navy/white with an MSRP of $349.99. The cart is excellent for use by high school and college golf teams. So for more details see Zerofriction.com or call (630)-317-7700.

Participants at demo day will hit from the ZFT Maxx 3-prong tee, that offer golfers a 66% reduced contact area, but are extra large and durable. Iacono invites show goers to come visit the Zero Friction booth (3273) at the convention center to see Zero Friction products. But there will be more new products to be unveiled in Orlando.

The Gog Blog Returns tomorrow. RS

SOUTHERN PINES GOLF CLUB BACK THE DONALD ROSS WAY

UPSTAIRS OR DOWNSTAIRS THE SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB IS OPEN. One of the Chicago area year round round golf operations. Because you can play Schaumburg Golf Club on the simulators indoors in the winter months. IF YOUR getting ready for the spring trip, get some new SGC apparel in the pro shop. BUT when your ready to chow down-Chandlers Chophouse is open. More at SchaumburgGolf.com or (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG BY RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on Facebook or LinkedIn.

*** LAST MARCH  I toured the under renovation Southern Pines Golf Club with Sales Director of Ross Resorts-Ross Hutchinson. Then spoke with architect Kyle Franz who has now renovated all three courses at Ross Resorts. A couple of months back after a full years worth or work. Southern Pines Golf Club has reopened to rave reviews. On most days over 200 golfers are out enjoying the course.

In recent months resort president Kelly Miller and Franz have sat down to answer questions about the renovation process. Those interviews are below.

Kelly Miller (L) with architect Kyle Franz (R)

GOT ROSS !

Yes they do, and now it’s in three doses.

IN 2020 shortly before Covid landed, Ross Resorts president Kelly Miller added a third track to his property.

But this wasn’t any old course. Because it was another classic Donald Ross golf course, granted it needed some dust polished off it. But Miller had just the guy to do that in Franz.

So maybe for a minute or two some might have wondered if Miller made the right move buying the club on the front end of the pandemic. But now after reopening in the middle of a golf boom. Miller did what the movie title said, he made ” All the Right Moves”, acquiring Southern Pines Golf Club.

PHASE 1 saw an emphasis on tree removal, irrigation and bunker restoration. But then earlier in 2021, Phase 2 saw green work along with cart paths and some other areas had their time come improvement.

A history of Pinehurst Golf was brought to the fore-front when Franz working with 70 year old photo’s of the club, found the “Lost Hole”. The Lost Hole was a par 3 to the left of the 4th green, that connected to the 15th tee. This allowed golfers to play hole one to 4, then 15 to 18 and have a nine hole round. Not a bad idea since the 9th green is not near the clubhouse.

So with a tip of the cap to Pinehurst historic golf, Franz rebuilt the short hole, with a green, and with a sand green next to the regular green. A staple in tradition from the early days of Pinehurst Golf.

KELLY MILLER and KYLE FRANZ Click here to hear the interview from early in the renovation process.

During the restoration process, Miller announced that Cody Self who previously served as an assistant superintendent at both Mid Pines and Pine Needles before moving back to Tennessee, has rejoined the Ross Resorts family.

“I’m excited to work hard and see the course mature over the next couple of years and Southern Pines into a top 100 public course in America that all golfers can play,” said Self. “The Bell family now has three of some of the finest courses to be available for public play.”

CLICK HERE to hear another chapter of in the interview series of Kelly Miller and Kyle Franz on the renovation of Southern Pines Golf Club.

THE WORK IS DONE at Southern Pines Golf Club-golfers come out and enjoy the golf.

Book tee times for Southern Pines Golf Club and your play and stay for Mid Pines-Pine Needles and the 2022 U.S. Women’s Open today look for Ross Resorts on line, or call the resort at (800)-747-7272.

GIANTS RIDGE GOLF OR SKIING-FUN YEAR ROUND

THE MISTWOOD GOLF DOME is the premier golf dome in the Chicago area. So come enjoy golf on Toptracer, get lessons or club fittings. But while you are there, bring your taste buds and have them ready for food and beverage in McWethy’s Sports Bar. To book your hitting bay go online to MistwoodGolfDome.com or call (630)-739-7600.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect on LinkedIn or Facebook.

Rory on the Quarry at Giants Ridge in Minnesota.

GIANTS RIDGE is a full year round resort in Northern Minnesota.

Golf in the summer, and if you enjoy skiing or other outdoor winter sports, it’s the place to go in the winter.

But for you golfers Giants Ridge has two outstanding golf courses. The Quarry the #1 public course in Minnesota, and the Legend that sits in the Top 10 list, of public courses in Minnesota.

Welcome to Giants Ridge in Biwabik Minnesota.

Both courses were designed by golf architect Jeff Brauer, who hit two home runs in designing these 36 holes.

The golf courses have a practice area, that sits on near the first tee of the Quarry Course. But this large range is not only great for golf practice, but to see wildlife that could drop by to watch you hit range balls.

A group of golfers this past summer had a large deer come out of the trees, run down the center of the driving range, and stopped up by the tee box to welcome all the golfers to Giants Ridge.

The Par 4, 13th hole on the Quarry Course, offers strategic challenges off the tee box, and into the green.

The Quarry Course is #1 public in Minnesota, and it’s easy to see why.

Starting right off the first tee is a good par 4 opening hole. Because it provides enough challenge, without being very difficult.

But the second hole called St. James is a 575 yard par 5, that creates a challenge off the tee. Because if you don’t hit your tee shot with some right-to-left, the second shot requires some real carry over a waste area, to where the fairway comes back into play.

The 18th fairway on the Quarry, with the clubhouse in the rear behind the green.

The Quarry like the Legends has some great elevation change. So if you enjoy golf where you get a little bump off the tee box, you will love both courses at Giants Ridge.

Water and ravines come into play on a few holes over the two courses. But they create very scenic holes, and ones that leave you pumped when you hit a good tee shot.

One of the more unique par 5’s you will ever play, is the par 5, third hole on the Legends Course. So can you crush over Big Foot’s foot print. Because if you can, this par 5 can be a makeable birdie.

The par 3 17th on the Legend Course requires a carry over water, to this table top green.

The Legend Course has an amazing set of par 3 holes, that one doesn’t often find.

Brauer made excellent use of the land to mix in challenges on the tee shots.

Whether you are just carrying bunkers, a ravine, or the water. Legend’s par 3 holes will test your game, and when you hit it good the rewards are great.

Another thing that is great is the Wacootah Grille. Because if you enjoy dining inside or outside in the summer months, the Wacootah Grille has several great options. You can’t miss with the Omelet’s, French Toast or breakfast sandwiches in the morning. The burgers or sandwiches for lunch. Steaks and ribs for dinner. But if pizza is your choice, head just a few minutes into Biwabik, and try Vi’s Pizza and TNT Bar.

Lodging is very comfortable in the villa’s that have multiple levels and do spread out. But if your skier, head to Giants Ridge now. But if your not, think ahead to this summer and book your golf travel at GiantsRidge.com or call (800)-688-7669.

See more photos on Facebook Rory Spears page, or on Twitter @GogBlogGuy.

TALAMORE & MID SOUTH A SOUTHERN PINES SPECIAL

THE MISTWOOD GOLF CLUB in Rt. 53 in Bolingbrook is open daily until 10 PM. So why not stop in to practice, get a lesson, or tuned up with a club fitting. It’s never too early or too late to order new golf clubs. Mistwood Golf Dome is home to McWethy’s sports bar where you catch all the sports action. See More at Mistwoodgolfdome.com.

The Mid South Club an Arnold Palmer Design, in Southern Pines NC. Part of the Talamore resort.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation.

Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or connect with him on LinkedIn and or Facebook.

IF YOUR IN the golf capital of America the Sandhills of the Pinehurst/Southern Pines area, there plenty of courses to play.

But one facility that can slide a little under the radar, but is as good as the major players in town, is the Talamore-Mid South resort. 36 holes, with great places to practice, play, eat, drink and yes sleep. Because when it comes to having a place to stay, the Talamore-Mid South villas are about as good as it gets anywhere.

Talamore under the lights.

But first on the tee is the “New Course” at Talamore. The Rees Jones design is fun to play and has the the true flavor of sandhills country golf.

But the name “new course” is fitting. Because there are so many new things that golfers will find on the golf course, that were not there a few years ago.

So what’s new ! There has been tree work done, bunker work done, tee work done. The cart paths have been fixed. The clubhouse has been redone inside, with a new grille. But if you don’t have time to go inside, there is a new halfway house at the turn. Plus new bathrooms out on the golf course, real ones that have eliminated the need to find a portable toilet.

The par 3, 2nd hole at Talamore. Complete with some of the courses pot bunkers.

Talamore has some traditional sandhill style bunkers. But it also has some pot bunkers on a few of the holes. Land in the wrong spot in a few of them and getting out is no fun.

But one of things that is fun about Talamore, is room to hit the driver. You won’t get squeezed when hitting you driver, plus some tee boxes have a little elevation to them.

Water is not found all over the golf course, in fact it really doesn’t come into play until you need to hit your drive on the 18th hole.

Talamore’s 18th hole a par 4 with water.

The 18th hole at Talamore is the true definition  of risk-reward. If your a big hitter and you want to cross the water, you can try and go over it. But if not, take a shorter crossing and out into the center of the fairway. It is a great finishing hole.

If Talamore is a place you have not been to in a while, the news on the Llama’s is this. They are still there, and you can visit them at their pen to the left of the 14th tee. But their days as caddies are over. In the meantime, enjoy the walk and everything off the course. But if your ready for 36 holes in one day, just pull out and rive down the road a mile to the Mid-South Club, another great choice.

Talamore gives yo the option of play here, stay here and now move here. Because there are more home sites being built around the course, and near the main drive coming into the clubhouse. So visit TalamoreGolfResort.com or call (800)-552-6292.

The sun rises on the course Arnie built- The Mid South Club.

Mid-South an Arnold Palmer design, (previously known as Pinehurst Plantation) is part of the Talamore resort.

The two courses make-up a great 1-2 punch. After taking the driveway in to the clubhouse, that runs between holes 10-11,12 and 13. You immediately start to see the challenge you are in for that day.

But after arriving at the stately clubhouse, complete with a new bar and dining area, the grace and charm of the property start to set it. Because some of the best villa’s you can ever stay in, flank the clubhouse on both sides. Then behind the clubhouse are practice facilities that include a large putting green and driving range.

The par 3 6th hole at Mid South

Mid South starts out with two good opening holes that gives one a chance to settle in to their game. Even though the tee shot over water on the second has some challenge to it.

But the real kick-in of great holes start on the third hole, a well bunkered par 3 that plays 180 from the tips.

The fourth hole is a great uphill dogleg right, to an elevated green. You will see some elevation change here. Then the par 4, 5th hole requires a strategic tee shot, and an even better approach to this guarded green.  But the par 3, sixth hole is a shot over water and rocks that guard the front of the green, bunkers await back of the green.

The Mid South villa’s complete with two bedrooms, fireplaces, big screen TV’s and more, are outstanding.

But the closing holes on each nine leave the golfers a challenge.

The front nine finishes with a 542 yard par 5, with an approach shot over water. The back nine offers a par 3, 17th hole from 205 yards, and the par 4/5, 435 yard 18th hole.

The 18th is more often played as a par 5, even at 435 yards due to the rsik reward involved. Because it has a water all down the right side, that curves in front of the green. To the left are trees above the mounds and the cart path. After your round the new bar is a great place to go buy one. It has views of the golf course and practice area’s. The villa’s are only a short walk back from the dining area or the pro shop.

Talamore-Mid South  resort have two great golf course, and two even better places to stay. For more information visit TalamoreGolfresort.com (800)-552-6292. New housing options are available around the golf course.

MOVING AROUND MYRTLE BEACH-THREE COURSES TO PLAY

THE SCHAUMBURG GOLF CLUB has it’s pro shop and simulators open daily. So why not play the indoor version of Schaumburg Golf Club on the simulators. But while you golf order up some great food and beverage from Chandlers Chophouse right upstairs. Book a simulator online at Schaumburggolf.com or call the pro shop (847)-885-9000.

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation for Golfers on Golf. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy, or connect on LinkedIn and Facebook.

Rory at Grande Dunes Golf Club in Myrtle Beach SC.

DURING LAST YEAR”S TRIP to Myrtle Beach South Carolina, I was able to play of the area’s top golf courses.

Myrtle Beach and the Grand Strand area, is one place you must visit if you love golf.

There are plenty of golf courses to choose from, in fact there are almost 90 courses in the area. Many of them won national awards from various golf publications, when they first opened or shortly thereafter.

The par 3, 12th hole at Tidewater Golf Club.

Tidewater is one of the courses that visiting golfers rave about, when they visit Myrtle Beach.

The Rees Jones-Ken Tomlinson design opened for play in 1990, and is now in it’s 32nd year of operation. Their is full size clubhouse, complete with a great menu and dining area to enjoy before or after your round.

But on the golf course there are six sets of tee’s, starting at 4,648 yards. But from the back tee’s its 7,044 yards, and a test for all golfers and big hitters. Some of the golf holes run along a water channel, so it’s not uncommon to see some nice boats racing past as you play. Tidewater’s par 3, 12th hole that plays 190 yards from the tips, is one of the most photographed holes in the area.

For more information and tee times visit Tidewatergolf.com or call the club at (843)-913-2424. Located at 1400 Tidewater Drive-North Myrtle Beach South Carolina.

Welcome to Grande Dunes, part of the Founders Group International.

The Founders Group International now contains 21 golf courses around the Myrtle Beach area.

Most of the courses are among the most requested courses to play for visiting golfers. Including the classic Pine Lakes Golf Club, just reopened from a restoration project.

Grande Dunes now in it’s 21st year of operation and designed by the Roger Rulewich Group, continues to attract golfers who want to play a fun, but challenging golf course. So while the course has six sets of tees to play from, the back tees are set at 7,578 yards. A test for even the best professionals who play the game.

The Par 3-11th hole at Grande Dunes. 190 yards.

Grande Dunes brings water into play on 12 of 18 holes.

During holes 13 and 14 water is a key factor on how to play the hole.

The 560 yard par 5, 13th hole has a double water crossing that requires a solid drive, and a better approach into the green.

But next up on the tee at the 14th hole, a 220 yard par 3, is a water crossing that runs into the water channel. A large bunker guards the right side of the green. But it does catch some shots and keeps them in play, instead of them ending up in the water. The Grande Dunes not only is 18 good holes of golf, it makes a great backdrop to the homes getting built around the golf course.

The club has a full size clubhouse for excellent dining and a fully stocked pro shop.  If your moving around Myrtle Beach playing golf, do it at the dunes. The Grande Dunes golf club is located at 8700 Golf Village Lane, Myrtle Beach. Tee times by calling the pro shop at (888)-886-8877 or visit Grandedunesgolf.com.

The Pete Dye Club at Barefoot Resort North Myrtle Beach.

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH is home to plenty of golf courses, including four of them at the Barefoot Resort.

The four designers include Greg Norman, Davis Love III, Tom Fazio and Pete Dye.

While the Norman course has fairways running up to long sandy waste area’s, there other styles through Barefoot Resorts four courses. The Love III has previously hosted the Big Break. The Hootie and the Blowfish-Monday after the Masters Outing has been played on the Dye Course.

The 185 yard par 3, 3rd hole on the Dye course at Barefoot Resort.

The Dye course is vintage Pete Dye, golfers who have played Dye courses in other states, will enjoy seeing some of Dye’s trademark hazards, or maybe they won’t.

But one thing is for sure, there will be a little down south Dye home cooking tossed-in.

While you won’t find any of Dye’s famous volcano bunkers like at the French Lick Resort, or trips through a cave-mine in West Virginia, there will be plenty of humps, bumps, pot bunkers and railroad ties to hold you over. The golf course has five sets of tees with yardage going from 5,021 up front, to 7,343 off the tips. But if you get off to a good start, hang on to your hats and visors. Because the closing holes (14-18) is where Dye makes you earn your score.

Between the yardage, the carry’s, a few more deep pot bunkers lurking, golfers will need to choose what club they hit, and where to leave the current shot, so the next one sets you up to score. The big clubhouse is a great place to dine, and the pro shop has plenty of options to pick from if your apparel or other shopping. The Dye Course is Semi-private so check for playing opportunities before arriving. The Club is located at 2600 Pete Dye Drive, more information at www.barefootgolf.com or call the resort at (843)-399-7238.

For more photo’s see Rory Spears Facebook, or Twitter @GogBlogGuy.