Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Meet Heart of America's Assistant Superintendent: Sam Marlin

In the spring of this year, Heart of America Golf Course hired a new assistant superintendent. I would like to take this chance to introduce him.

Sam Marlin:

Sam grew up in Southwest Kansas in the small town of Sublette. There he picked up his passion for golf, which took him all the way to the college level and a little beyond. He plays in the occasional professional event when he gets a chance.

Sam's career in the golf course industry started in 2012. He worked a few seasons at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course, before eventually taking over as Superintendent at Cimarron Valley Golf Course. The 9 hole course near his hometown was failing and the two years Sam was at the helm brought it back from the brink of disaster. From there, Sam decided to move up to Kansas City, where is girlfriend was working and took our open assistant superintendent position. His experience from Buffalo Dunes to running his own 9-hole course has been very beneficial for us here and he has become a integral part of our operation.

If you don't see Sam on the golf course, which is where he spends the majority of his day working or golfing, you will most likely find him in his garage. Hes a tinkerer and spends free time working on his truck or small engines. He is also an avid hunter and fisherman.

So if you see Sam on the course make sure to say hello, he's probably the one with the shovel in his hand. Sam definitely fits in well at HOA and we are happy to have him.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

The Little Things

At Heart of America this year it is my goal to complete small aesthetic projects each week. I think that it is the little things that really set a course apart from the rest and we are looking for ways to improve the look and play-ability  of the course with small manageable projects.

Here are a few examples of the types of projects you can expect to see this year at HOA:

 This is the walk-up to #9 River Tee. Previously it was an undefined area of old mulch and rock. The new pavers create a functional, eye pleasing element to the finishing hole.
Finished Product #9 River Tee

The pavers were generously donated to us and you can expect to see them pop up in a couple more spots on the course this year. The golf course greatly appreciates donations like this that may have been thrown away otherwise and can be utilized on the course to improve its appearance.

Even simple projects, like defining the water cooler area with edge stones and some mulch help clean up the area and make the course look nicer
The Kansas City Chiefs resodded Arrowhead Stadium this spring and were kind enough to let us have some of the leftover Bermuda from the project. We used some of this grass to resod a Footgolf green with the warm season grass to match the others. Bermuda is a very heat and drought tolerant grass and should thrive in this situation with little rain or irrigation.

Before the grass was laid

Immediately after the grass was laid

3 days after the grass was laid

Just this week we really tried to clean up around #1 River Tee so that a golfers first impression of the course is a positive one. We lined the fence and marshal turn-around area with some ornamental grasses and made a clean mulch bed.

These projects will continue throughout the year, and will not affect our day to day maintenance. The crew will also be completing much larger bunker renovation and pond rejuvenation projects this summer, but I am a firm believer that the addition of these mini-projects will make us stand out.