Cart Path Only Decisions & Guidelines

Dear Spring Run Member,

Some questions have been raised recently regarding our decision processes and guidelines as it comes to making the course “cart path only” or not. I would like to explain what our evaluation process is when we make these decisions.

Our first step is always to look at how much rain we actually received on the course. Usually, anything less than a ½ inch and we don’t have any issues. If we received more than ½ inch then we drive the entire golf course and check the status. While we are driving the course, we are evaluating several factors.

The first thing we are looking at is how soft and how much water our tires are pushing and splashing while we are driving. If it is consistent water under the tires, then the hole will be “cart path only”. If the water sound is a little more intermittent, then we look at several other factors. The first factor then is how much we hear the water under the tires. If it is more than 60% of the hole then we make the hole cart path only. If it is less then that, we typically try to stake it off and put out signs to avoid the wet areas.

The next factor we evaluate is whether or not carts will damage the turf if we let them drive on the hole. If we find a wet area while we are driving, we drive through the area and see if our carts leave any tracks or ruts like the one in the pictures below.

If we hear water but don’t leave ruts or mud anything up, we will stake off the area and leave the hole open to carts.  We drive every hole on the course and make these evaluations, and then meet to discuss what we found and what the game plan will be. If we can, we try to leave as much of the golf course available as possible to drive on and only make certain holes cart path only. However, there are times where there are only 1 or 2 holes available to drive on, in that case, to make it easier for all members and golfers to remember the rules for the day we just simply make it cart path only on the whole course. We always try to minimize the cart path only restrictions to specific holes if we can but, that is not always possible because of the amount of rainfall or possible damage to the course. We never make cart restriction decisions based on who is playing golf that day or if there is an event. Nor do we take into account the appearance to others if we reduce or minimize cart restrictions. Our decisions are based solely on the conditions of that particular day and safety and health of the golf course.

Thank you for your continued support as we strive to make Spring Run Golf Club the best bundled community in southwest Florida.

Sincerely,

Benjamin S. Hanshew

Spring Run Golf Club, Superintendent

Ropes and stakes

Dear Spring Run Member,

Ropes and stakes on the golf course can be a nuisance, I know. However, they are there to help manage stress on the turf by redirecting cart and foot traffic. These tools are necessary to help us keep the course in excellent condition. Stepping over them does not help. And cutting them is definitely not appreciated.

Someone has been cutting the ropes on #7, and either Sunday or Monday, they cut those ropes on the tee box in three different places. This is not the first time this has happened, as last year, someone cut ropes on #2 and #3. Not only is this detrimental to attempts to control cart traffic, is extra work for the staff and cost to the club,  it is vandalism. The Board of Directors is very interested in who may be behind this.

Thank you for understanding the purpose of the ropes and stakes. Know that by walking around the ropes and entering the fairway at the last stake, you are helping keep Spring Run’s beautiful golf course in great shape!

Mike

New Assistant Superintendent – Jay Haft

JAY HAFT

Dear Spring Run Members,

Please help me in welcoming our new Assistant Superintendent at Spring Run Golf Club, James “Jay” Haft. Jay is from Cincinnati, Ohio born and raised. He received a B.B.A from the University of Cincinnati majoring in Marketing with a Minor in Management. He later received his Turfgrass certificate from Cincinnati State.  Jay comes to us with a wealth of knowledge and background in both turf grass and landscaping. He has worked for some very prestigious clubs in the area, such as Royal Poinciana and Hole-in-the Wall golf clubs, and came with glowing recommendations from both courses. He has also work for Panther Run Golf Club in Ave Maria and did an internship at Innisbrook Golf Resort in Tampa. Along with his plentiful golf course experience, for the last couple years Jay has worked for some landscaping companies in the area, and has gained a wealth of knowledge on that side of the industry. I am positive he will be a great addition to our team and family here at Spring Run Golf Club. Please make him feel welcome if you happen to see him on the golf course or in the community. As always, thank you for all your support as we continue to keep Spring Run Golf Club “the Best Bundled Golf Community in Southwest Florida.

Top Dressing Sand on Greens

I would like to take a moment of your time to explain the importance of top-dressing the golf course and our program that helps keep us in excellent condition. Top-dressing is a very important practice on the greens for several reasons. The first is that it helps smooth out the greens and keeps them firm. This in turn allows us to maintain faster green speeds and a more true roll. The second benefit is that it helps maintain our soil structure. As we fertilize and do all our various cultural practices on the greens, it can lead to a build-up of organic matter which can create problems with water infiltration, nutrition deficiencies, and overall poor-quality turf. The top-dressing sand is coarser than the organic matter and thus allows us to create pore space in the soil, allowing water and nutrients to move more effectively through the soil profile. So, as you can see the top-dressing sand is a vital tool in our management program to maintain a quality putting surface on the greens.

We do our very best to alternate when we top-dress. We avoid always top-dressing on the same days so we don’t constantly affect the same groups. Our program throughout season is to top-dress every other week. So, if we top-dress on a Thursday one week, the next time we top-dress may be on a Tuesday or Wednesday. Then two weeks later we will top-dress on whatever day we have not top-dressed so that no group is getting affected more than another group. We do our best to adhere to this program, but sometimes tournament schedules prevent us from being able to avoid the disruption. We ask that you are patient and understanding with us as sometimes we are unable to stay on the alternating days. However, we will strive to do our best to maintain this program. My staff and I are looking forward to another great season here at Spring Run Golf Club and hope everyone has a wonderful and safe holiday season.

Sincerely

Benjamin S. Hanshew

Spring Run Golf Club

Superintendent

Wet Areas on Golf Course

Dear Spring Run Member,

                It has been brought to my attention that there are some concerns with some wet areas in some of the fairways and approaches. I can assure you that we are aware of them and that we are trying to make adjustments to our irrigation system to help fix these areas. I would like to take this opportunity though to explain what is happening with these areas as there are a number of reasons behind these wet spots.

First the soil structures in these areas are much different than the surrounding soil. The soil is very high in organic matter and because of this, it is much more likely to hold water and create these wet areas. The problem for us is that the surrounding areas are being watered by the same irrigation heads and if we make to severe of adjustments to these heads, the surrounding turf will burn up and brown out. We are making adjustments daily to our irrigation system so we water adequately for all turf and reduce the wet areas. Soil structures are constantly changing, though, with everything we do to manage the golf course. Because of this, areas that have not been wet or problematic in the past may become problems in the future. We try to identify these areas as fast as possible and make adjustments to remedy the problems and sometimes the adjustments and fixes are not always easy to come by.  Another factor that leads to these wet areas is that in some areas area we have 5 or 6 heads hitting these areas which applies way too much water. Typically, you only have 3 to 4 heads watering the same area. With the extra 2 heads it is adding more water than we want. We are trying to identify these areas as quickly as we can and make adjustments accordingly. In the short term we are trying to make irrigation adjustments as best we can to eliminate these wet areas. The long-term fix will require aggressive summer aerifications and top dressing for some areas. For other areas we will have to remove sod add drainage and replace soil. There will also have to be some irrigation movement to fix spacing issues. All of these fixes are very time consuming and costly. I want to assure everyone though that we are constantly watching for these areas and that when we see them, we try to make adjustments as fast as possible to remedy the issue. If you see a wet spot that we may have missed, please bring it my attention or one of my supervisors. Thank you for your understanding and patience while we try to fix these issues as we continue to strive to make Spring Run Golf Club the Best Bundled Golf Community in Southwest Florida.

Sincerely,

Benjamin S. Hanshew

Spring Run Golf Club

Superintendent

Summer Projects Update

Dear Spring Run Member,

As season draws near, I want to give a few updates on everything that has happened this past summer. There have been a lot of nice upgrades and additions to our golf course that have improved our club both aesthetically and operationally. We started off this summer, in June, with the addition of the timber walls along #1 and all then beautiful landscaping that coincided. These additions have drastically improved the aesthetic value of hole #1. We also continued the removal of the coquina paths and additions of concrete paths on holes #10 and #16 and installed some curbing and drains to help reduce the erosion issues in a few areas.


#16 Curbing and Drain Install by Tees

 Finally, the addition of the Spring Run Clock at the Driving range and the shrinking of the cart path on hole #15 completed our major summer projects. Overall, everything went great this summer and all the projects came out looking phenomenal and hope that they will enhance and increase your enjoyment of Spring Run Golf Club all season long and for many seasons to come.

Spring Run Clock at the Driving Range
Hole #15 shrunk to an 8 ft wide path

Sincerely,

Benjamin S. Hanshew

Superintendent

Friendly Reminders

Dear Spring Run Members,

Season is upon us once again and I would like to take a moment of your time to go over a few changes and reminders regarding cart etiquette and guidelines during season. My staff and I are going to make a focused effort this season to reduce the amount of ropes and stakes being used on the golf course. The ropes and stakes do become unsightly and are sometimes more a hassle then a benefit to everyone. With this in mind, we want to try and get rid of the ropes all together, but to do so we need everyone’s help to reduce the wear patterns in the turf. We can accomplish by utilizing the 90-degree rule as much as possible. This means that rather than entering the turf at the white capped stake, that you drive down the path as far as possible before you turn to enter the turf and go to your golf ball. This will spread out the wear patterns in the turf and will reduce the need for stakes and rope, and increase the turf health as well. At the bare minimum though, we ask that you do not enter the turf until you pass the white capped stake.

Another change we have made this season is removing the white balls off the course, which previously indicated where to exit the turf and return to the path. We have replaced them with a much more aesthetically appealing yellow capped stake.

This will now be your marker for exiting the turf and returning to the path. However, to help reduce wear patterns in the turf and the need for ropes and stakes, we ask that all golfers return to the path as soon as possible after hitting their golf balls and avoid driving in the same locations as everyone else. The idea behind this is to spread out the cart traffic and relieve stress on the turf. If we all follow these guidelines, the turf will be much healthier, our golf course will be much more aesthetically appealing, and the need for ropes and stakes will be greatly reduced. We thank you in advance for helping us and look forward to another great season here at Spring Run Golf Club.

Sincerely,

Benjamin S. Hanshew

Superintendent

Golf Maintenance Project Phase 2

Dear Spring Run Member,

            I am pleased and excited to announce that phase 2 of the golf maintenance building renovation has begun. We are currently in the demolition phase of the process and it is moving right along smoothly. We are all very excited to see all the changes taking place and can’t wait for the project to be completed. With any luck, Suncoast Builders expects to be done within 4 to 6 months. Even though the renovation has begun, we are still operating with business as usual. Which means there are a lot of moving parts and equipment around the maintenance facility.

Because of this, we are asking that all members refrain from coming to maintenance facility for any reason. I realize that many of our members are starting to return for the winter months and there will be some donations and things to be given away. We ask that all members go through the correct chains of communication to give the donations away. Please give Rhonda Valente all pertinent information for donation and we will make sure that whomever wins the donation, will contact you about appropriate times for us to pick it up. Please do not come to the maintenance facility and drop off any donations. We want to make sure that all our members and staff are as safe as possible at all times. We thank you in advance for your cooperation and understanding. Also keep an eye out for more postings and updates during this renovation process.

Sincerely,

Benjamin S. Hanshew

Spring Run Golf Club

Superintendent

Round 2: August Course Closure Preview and Projects Update

Dear Spring Run Member,

            As many of you know, we have had a lot of exciting changes and improvements made on the course this summer. The dredge sox erosion remediation on #1 lake bank is complete and it looks phenomenal. Along with the dredge sox, the Timber walls were installed and all the plantings are in the ground. Thank you to Mrs. Gullotti and Mrs. Casale for overseeing and spearheading this portion of the project.

Timber Wall install #1 Tee Box
Backfill Stage #1 Tee Box
Sod work #1 Tee Box
1 Tee Timber Wall Finished Product
1 Tee Timber Wall Finished Product

Click HERE to view Before and After Photos from the Hole 1 project.


Coming up next week, we will enter the second closure for the summer. We will do all the same aerification and cultural practices we did during the first renovation. However, some will be less aggressive than during the first closure because we want to make sure any stressed turf from the summer has ample time to heal up and get ready for season. Along with all the regular cultural practices we will be doing, we will also have a couple major projects going on as well. We will be narrowing the coquina area on hole #15, from the second set of blue stakes to the cart path by the green, down to an 8-foot-wide cart path using sod. This will create more playing surface as well a widen the fairway slightly. Along with the project on #15 we will also be addressing the irrigation issues and drainage issues on the driving range. We will be doing an irrigation renovation and replacing the current system that is up there, with something that will better suit the water needs of the driving range and will also install some drain line that will hopefully improve the drainage on the tee so after rain events we may not have to use the mats as often. The last project that happen during the August closure is the Spring Run Clock will be installed at the driving range. Suncoast builders will be on site to perform that work. As you can see we have had a lot of exciting changes and additions to Spring Run Golf Club this summer and still have some more to come before season starts. Thank you again for all your support.

Sincerely,

Benjamin S. Hanshew

Superintendent