“Welcome to My Desert”
Although I don’t live anywhere near the Phoenix Convention Center, I want to welcome all the GHS leadership and members to Arizona!
This has been my home since 2006 when I moved to Troon Village, in what is known as north Scottsdale. My Scottish friends always raise an eyebrow when I say I live at Troon. Thirty-five years ago when developer Jerry Nelson hired Tom Weiskopf to design the course at Troon Country Club, he named the whole project Troon, as a tribute to Tom’s Open Championship win at Royal Troon in 1973.
It’s been a great privilege to be part of this golf community. And it is also a great privilege to be part of the Golf Heritage Society travel team — except this time I don’t have that far to go!
2024 GCSAA Show
GHS exhibits for the 3rd time
My first experience being part of the GCSAA Show was in 2022 at San Diego. It was quite a thrill to be among all the major exhibitors like Toro, and of course the American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA) who are strategic partners with the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America to put on this extraordinary Conference and Trade Show. I wrote a story about it — Ship Ahoy! — you can find it here.
It’s exciting for me and the other GHS board members who got to be entrenched with thousands of other passionate golfers, and especially the ones who take care of the turf on which we play the game we all love so much.
Some GHSers at our booth in 2024: Deb Haueisen, Ben Ellis, Glenn Haueisen, and Mel Lucas
The GCSAA was established in1926 and Donald Ross was one of the original founders. The more than 19,000 members from the United States and 78 countries are the men and women who manage and maintain the game’s most valuable resource — the golf course. Their mission is to advance their profession and improve communities through the enjoyment, growth and vitality of the game of golf.
That’s why members of GHS resonate so much with these golf enthusiasts, since we, too, seek to promote an appreciation of the history and traditions of golf, played on the largest golfing landscapes the world over, that are maintained by our golf brethren.
This 2024 iteration of the GCSAA Conference and Trade Show was like no other, as it was billed as, and delivered on, bringing interactive experiences .
The agenda included many educational sessions for the 10,000 + golf industry attendees plus the awesome session that I got to attend called “Ladies Leading Turf” with three exceptional women who told their inspirational stories to a standing-room only crowd.
Taba with Forrest Richardson
Ladies Leading Turf Session
Jan Bel Jan with Amy Bockerstette
A golf course – a story to be unfolded…
Since I don’t drive at night anymore, I was not able to hang out for fun dinners but I did get to experience one great event hosted by ASGCA Past President, Forrest Richardson, called ”Taco Social” — since he had a 3-5pm option. Lucky me.
I got to eat great food, meet Forrest’s wife Valerie and drink Craggy Range Sauvignon Blanc! What a fun event in a spectacular setting! Forrest is a golf course architect and among the many courses he has created he also re-designed Mountain Shadows in Paradise Valley. It is one of the best short courses I have played anywhere in the world. Forrest has designed courses from Utah to Sweden to India. Part of his design philosophy that I really like is:
“A golf course is a story to be unfolded. For the greatest enjoyment there should be anticipation, intrigue, the occasional chase scene and even a pinch of humor.”
I hope everyone comes away with a sense of accomplishment, especially if some new members decided to join GHS as they have done at the other GCSAA Shows we have participated in!
This should give you more of a sense of Forrest Richardson’s sense of humor and style — check out this restored BMW 1959 Isetta car. Forrest said similar ones have sold for as much as $200,000 at the Barrett-Jackson auctions that take place here in Scottsdale.
Taba with the Forrest Richardson 1959 BMW car