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Monday, December 31, 2018


Note: we will add pictures in the next few days!

Last day of the year!


Without a brick laid down for reconstruction and a local economy that saw not much improvement in 2018, we were able to retain about 80% of our membership, and we survived well as a club. I do believe that the setback with the delay in payment from Philadelphia Insurance forced us to improvise during our season and become stronger. WE THANK YOU ALL LOYAL MEMBERS WHO HAVE TRUSTED THE DIRECTION OUR LEADERSHIP HAS SET! In fact, kidding aside, I am looking forward to celebrating 100 uninterrupted years as a club (2037), you should join me! What a Centennial Anniversary this will be! I can only imagine some of our juniors who by then will be middle aged prosperous and productive adults, perhaps with kids, having a blast in our club (with the old farts that never gave up). Pardon the language! Trust me, in the end, we will go from a trailer to a nice clubhouse and from a swimming hole, to a swimming pool!

Let's get back to golf!

There were two new tournaments, both of which will stay in 2019: Diamond in the Rough Ladies Invitational & Chamber of Commerce Fall Scramble.

Several times during the year, especially when we were hosting events that brought visitors from out of town, our board and staff were praised for the way we were able to handle these events. Credit goes to our membership, our staff, my wife Ramona, and the "never give up" and optimism of all of them. In fact, in 2019 we landed both the girls and the boys 4-A Regional events. 

Personally, I am very pleased with the season as far as golf in general and tournaments is concerned. Our "finest hour" was during the bad weather (it rained all the day before and most of the morning of the tournament), first time tournament of the Diamond in the Rough. To begin with, this year the Women's Golf Association was revived by a group of very enthusiastic ladies, many of whom have a hard time breaking 100 in their own ball, but who are a "plus handicaps" in the area of promotion and enthusiasm! The tournament drew over 100 ladies, but due to bad weather that Saturday in October, several cancelled and we ended up with 82.... let me say this: IT WAS FANTASTIC! There was a tie for 1st with a 63, and no time for playoff: Tori Windsor-Haley Gray and Lori Garrison & Dana Loffer.

Our South Central Junior Tournament was great, and the club staff received many compliments from the parents who visited, telling us, "you guys do more for the kids than clubs with a nice clubhouse... you make us feel at home". I have to say that in Elk City, with or without a clubhouse, we always try to make everyone feel at home. Our own Tres Hill had the lowest score of all flights, including one of older kids, with a 67!

Our Club Championship did not have any participating ladies, but, it was one to remember! David Poole opened with a 65, the lowest opening round since Joby Gray did the same in 2012 and led by only one over Mark Fairchild. On Sunday, David starting pulling away on #6, and led by as many as five shots into the back nine, however, Mark put a little pressure by birdieing #15 and #16 and cut the lead to three going into the dangerous #17, playing a little into the wind. As many of you know, this 217 yard par-3 requires all your concentration, especially when the wind is in your face, a little "hicup" there and you can end with a 6 or more. After Mark placed his ball safely on the green, David Poole proceeded to make a hole in hole in one! The five shot lead into the last hole proved to be insurmountable! It was Mark Fairchild's third runner-up finish in the last 8 years. Four time champion Joby Gray had two rounds in the low 70's and was never a factor. To our knowledge, it was the first hole in one in this event, and if not, at least by the eventual champion. Tate Trotter, 15, added a 67 to his opening 74 and won the junior flight by one over Baylar Barnett.

The annual Tumbleweed Couples was won by Keegan Hall and sister Kinsley. It was their third win in this event. They had two 57's and comfortably won by four. Closest to the hole on #10, was awarded to a Hole in One by Christine Hohnke. To our knowledge, it was the first hole in one in this event as well.

The KECO-Tripoint, usually played on the second weekend of July, was moved to August. Many people thought it would not be good for the event, they were wrong, as usual, it was full (this year the KECO-Tripoint will be moved back to the last Saturday of July, The Club Championship will be moved to the second weekend of July and the Diamond in the Rough will be moved to August 24).

The Member-Guest was won by Aaron Kauk & Bret Matlock with a very nice 57. It was Aaron's first win in the Member-Guest. Perseverance pays off, these two friends have been playing for several years.

I leave my year's favorite for last (yes, I will recognize a little "favoritism" here, but you will all understand): As usual, the Father-Son Tournament (father, nephew, father-daughter, grandpa-grandson, mother-son/daughter/grandkind) proved to be one tournament that has not suffered losses in the last few years, and the field, as usual, was over 130 players! This year it was my "favorite" because I played with my grandson Sergio who was visiting for the summer, and because we shared a wonderful day with "Mama Golf" (Ann) Cowan, Michael Cowan and Cooper Cowan, plus, my sister Chuchina, who doesn't play golf, followed us all 18 holes. The tournament was won by David & Corbin Dyson with a 59. By the way, Sergio IS NOT a golfer, butt a good athlete, he has a lot of swing speed, though he rarely makes square contact. This day, he made contact 4 times, all of them with his driver.... and we used his tee shot all four times!

Thank you all and we wish all of you a fantastic 2019!

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