Steve Anderson has been hired as the new course superintendent at Inverness Club, according to Denny Johnson, chairman of the club's greens committee.
Anderson comes to Inverness from Franklin Hills Country Club in suburban Detroit. Like Inverness, it is a Donald Ross design and is rated among the nation's top 100 classic designs.
Previously, Anderson worked at Greenville (S.C.) Country Club and on the South course at Oakland Hills CC near Detroit.
"He is one of the bright young guys in the business," Johnson said of Anderson, who begins his new job on May 22. "He's a fine selection to maintain and enhance our course conditions."
Anderson becomes just the sixth superintendent in Inverness' 103-year history, replacing Tom Walker, who left the post after 25 years.
Walker's services have been retained by The Lord Club, a new private club being developed near Annapolis, Md.
Anderson is Inverness' second major hire in several months. Rob Stone assumed the general manager's post in late February, coming from Monroe Country Club in Pittsford, N.Y., to replace Pat LaRocca, who is now general manager of Phoenix (Ariz.) Country Club.
BLANK SLATE: Toledo-based Arthur Hills/Steve Forrest and Associates, golf course architects, have been hired to develop a master plan for a renovation of Highland Meadows Golf Club's course, according to club president John Holden.
"We've pretty much given them a blank slate to tell us what we need to do as we look to the future," Holden said. "We want the course to remain top-notch and to keep its character, but to be viable for a long time."
Already one of the top courses in town and host to an annual professional tournament, the LPGA's Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic, it figures the Meadows would need little more than tweaking for length.
But the course has long needed an expanded practice range that, in turn, could impact the current configuration of No. 9, which is the 18th hole for the Farr Classic. To extend and expand the range, and to resolve awkward back-to-back par 5s to close out the front nine, Hills/Forrest could suggest that No. 9 be shortened to a par 4 with the green relocated at the bottom of the fairway hill against the creek.
That's all speculation, though. Holden points out that while a master plan has been ordered and is expected to be delivered by mid-summer, "at this point the membership hasn't approved anything."
OPEN SEASON: Forty-eight players, with equal numbers of amateurs and pros, will be in the field next Monday at the U.S. Open local qualifying tournament at Maumee Bay State Park. Tee times for the 18-hole event run from 8-10:30 a.m. The low three scorers will advance to sectional qualifying, with the ultimate goal being a berth in the U.S. Open, June 15-18, at Winged Foot.
The Toledo District Golf Association runs the qualifier and, for the first time, will offer real-time scoring updates over the back nine of each player's round on its Web site, www.tdgagolf.org.
FREE LESSONS: May is designated as the PGA of America's "free lesson month." PGA pros around the country will give 10-minute lessons at no charge. About a dozen pros in the Toledo area are taking part in the program. A list, with contact information, can be found at www.playgolfamerica.com.
NOT SO FAST: Mention was made in The Blade's recent "Golf 2006" section of the Donald Ross-designed Hill Course at French Lick Springs Resort in Indiana. It should have been noted that the course is currently being renovated and will not re-open until August. Work on the golf course is part of a $350 million resort renovation and casino development project.
The renovation, in collaboration with the Donald Ross Society, will restore 25 of Ross' original bunkers and expand many greens to their original size and shape. When done, the course will be similar to the one on which Walter Hagen won the 1924 PGA Championship.
French Lick Springs, about 90 miles south of Indianapolis, is also developing a new, 18-hole championship course being designed by Pete Dye that is expected to open in 2008.
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