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Carolinas PGA Section Honors Head Pros at True Blue, Caledonia

November 26, 2014 by Chris King

True Blue is one of America's top 100 public coursesThe list of honors for Caledonia and True Blue, two of America’s top 100 public courses, just got a little longer.
 

Bart Romano, the head professional at True Blue, was named The Carolinas PGA Section 2014 Merchandiser of the Year in the Resort Course Category.

Caledonia’s head pro, Marc Guertin, was named CPGA Merchandiser of the Year in the Public Course Category as well.
 

“We are grateful that The Carolinas PGA Section has recognized Bart and Marc as Merchandisers of the Year in their respective categories,” said Bob Seganti, PGA Director of Golf Operations at Caledonia and True Blue. “I know that both men appreciate their vendor relationships, fellow staff members and most importantly the customers who support the brands. To have their efforts recognized by the Carolinas PGA is a nice way to start the Holiday season.”
 

By virtue of winning the Carolinas Section awards, Romano and Guertin will be nominated for national Merchandiser of the Year honors.
 

The awards are another in a steady stream for Caledonia and True Blue, both Mike Strantz designs. Golf Magazine ranked Caledonia 27th and True Blue 77th on its prestigious list of the Top 100 You Can Play, a ranking of the nation’s best public courses that was released in September 2014.
 

Golfweek also ranked Caledonia the 24th best resort course in America in its recently released Ultimate Guide to Golf Course Living and Great Escapes.
 

Routed along a stunning piece of property, Caledonia is equal parts art and architecture. Strantz carved a masterpiece between soaring live oak trees draped in Spanish moss and alligator-filled, lowcountry water that used to feed a thriving rice plantation.
 

Everything about True Blue, a 7,126-yard monster, is big, including the fairways, greens and waste bunkers.
 

Golf Magazine said of True Blue, “Hole to hole, the variety is astounding. The course is mostly open, with beauty and menace mingling with lakes, marshland and plenty of scrub-filled natural sandy areas … Rarely has golf architecture had a shaper as artful as Strantz. The full measure of his formidable skill is on display at True Blue.”

Big Break Myrtle Beach Episode 8 Recap: Charlie Flirts With Danger

November 25, 2014 by Chris King

Big Break Myrtle Beach returned to Barefoot Resort and with just six players remaining, everyone’s margin for error is razor thin, something that’s not lost on the contestants.

The first immunity challenge, which took place at the Dye Course, required players to hit the ball through what amounted to a Big Break frame approximately 35 yards from the pin.

Each player had to predict how close he or she would hit the ball to the pin and then hit the ball inside that number. The player who predicted the lowest total and then delivered would be the winner of the challenge. Players had to pick their distance before the competition started.

The challenge featured a few unexpected developments, starting with Charlie, who has been the strongest player on the show to date, predicting a distance of 22 feet. He put it inside the number but was easily bested by four other players.

The biggest surprise was the challenge winner. Jimmy, who hadn’t earned immunity since episode two and had survived a pair of elimination challenges, predicted he would hit the ball within six feet and he did it.

For a player who has been flirting with danger throughout the show, it was a shot in the arm.

The second stage of the immunity challenge was a repeat of the first. Charlie, perhaps having learned his lesson after being conservative, and Toph both put their bid in at 9 feet. Both hit excellent shots, finishing inside the predicted distance, and they went to a playoff.

Toph went first and was 26 feet from the hole, opening the door for a seemingly easy victory for Charlie, but the assumed front runner chunked his chip and was 76 feet from the pin.

Toph earned immunity and along with it the opportunity to jet ski along the Intracoastal with his buddy Jimmy.

The final immunity challenge allowed players to hit two shots from three different locations, and they accumulated points based on how close they were to the pin.

Emily won immunity based on the strength of her second shot on the second stage, which snuggled up to the hole and earned five of the 13 points she scored, good enough to nose Anthony by a point.

Tessa finished last and went straight to elimination, leaving her to choose between Charlie and Anthony as her opponent.

Charlie, who earned super immunity in the first show, a reward that could exempt him from an elimination challenge, opted to risk elimination and keep alive his chances of winning $10,000 if he makes it to the semifinals without using it.

Tessa decided to make Charlie face the elimination wringer for the first time, and the two had to play the eighth and ninth holes on the Dye Course.

They opened on the par 5 eighth and Charlie hit three outstanding shots, culminating with a chip that left him a tap-in birdie. Tessa put her drive in the left rough but eventually recovered to leave herself a seven-foot birdie attempt. Unfortunately, she hit a poor putt and missed it to the right.

Charlie went to the ninth one-up.

Both players hit poor drives, pulling them left, but excellent approaches. Tessa had an 18-foot birdie putt while Charlie had a 15-footer. Both two-putted, leaving Tessa one-stroke short and making her the seventh player eliminated from Big Break Myrtle Beach.

Caddie Chronicles: From Augusta to Azerbaijan, Our Man Duncan Brings 2014 to a Close

November 25, 2014 by Lorne Duncan

Our man Lorne Duncan concluded his 2014 season in MexicoI think it’s safe to say that my 2014 season has come to a close. A tour caddie that is supposed to be retired, I still worked ten tournament this year. That may be a little more than I planned or wanted to do, but I have to admit, I enjoyed every one of them.

From getting kicked out of The Masters (something I'm actually quite proud of) to being part of winning the silver medal with Matt Fitzpatrick at the US Open to working for my old boss, Johan Edfors, in far flung Azerbaijan, to working this week at the only PGA event in Mexico, all of them have been great. The problem with retiring from 30 plus years of being a tour caddie is all your friends are on tour and you end up never getting to see any of them. These few weeks back out gave me the opportunity to catch up with all my mates.

Wouldn't have missed that for anything.

The week in Mexico was particularly enjoyable for me as I always enjoy doing the unusual events, and I think a PGA Tour event being held in Mexico falls into that category.

It was also quite nice because I was working for a new player for me. In this caddying world, we tend to end up in certain "stables.” Taking me as an example, I've worked for 22 different Swedes in my career. You do a good job on the bag for one of them and the next thing you know you've gone through the whole stable of them.

I've also bagged for quite a few Spaniards, and this week I got an opportunity to work for a big name player, Gonzalo Fernández-Castaño (you have to admit, that's a big name!). How I ended up on the bag was sort of interesting as well.

After working for Matt Fitzpatrick at the French Open, Matt's management group decided since I wasn't caddying fulltime anymore they needed to get someone else on that bag, and I went back to looping for Johan Edfors.

A few weeks went by when I got a call from Matt saying he wasn't getting on so well with his new caddie and would I come out and work for him at the Dutch Open. This was great news for me as the Dutch Open is one of my favorite weeks on tour. The tournament was being held at Kennemer Golf Course, which is arguably one of the best courses on continental Europe. It's a Harry Colt designed layout and if you ever get a chance to play it, don't pass it up.

Well, as it turned out Matt and I had the locker right next to Gonzalo. One afternoon I got back to the locker in time to hear Gonzalo's caddie telling him that he really didn't fancy flying all the way from China to Mexico and then flying all the way back to Japan. I gave his caddie a little nudge in the ribs and told him I would be more than happy to do that week for him.

We had a laugh and nothing more was said about it. But three weeks later I got an email from Gonzalo asking me if I was available to bag for him the week of the Mayakoba? Great, I was back in the Spanish stable!

I've actually done this tournament twice before when it was just a Web.com event. As coincidence would have it, I also worked that week for a Spanish player, Alejandro Canizares, who's the son of the legendary Spanish golfer, Jose Canizares. In a lazy sort of way, it is always nice to come

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The Best Myrtle Beach Golf Package? Ultimate Glens Group Offer Makes its Case

November 24, 2014 by Chris King

Glen Dornoch helps anchor the Ultimate Glens packageAs you begin preparing for your Myrtle Beach golf trip next spring, here is an inside look at an offer that delivers great golf and value – the Ultimate Glens Stay & Play package.

The Deal: The Ultimate Glens package touts eight rounds of golf for the price of three and includes free lunch each day at the course. If you play Heather Glen, Glen Dornoch and Shaftesbury Glen, you receive a free morning round at Possum Trot, and free pre-booked replays at each course. Accommodations are at the Village at the Glens condos at Heather Glen.

The Price: Cost ranges from $295 (interested in a Christmas golf trip?) to $559 during peak season.

The Golf: Sure, the price is great, but the Ultimate Glens package will leave your group thanking you because of the quality of golf the trip offers.

With the Intracoastal Waterway buffeting five holes, Glen Dornoch is one of the area’s most scenic and memorable designs. The three finishing holes are as challenging as they are difficult.

The 17th hole is one of the best par 3s on the beach. With the marsh from the Intracoastal threatening on the left and railroad ties framing a bunker on the right, it’s the best hole on the course. But it’s hardly alone in its quality.

Heather Glen, home of three nine-hole layouts, has been a quiet star on the Myrtle Beach golf scene for years. Named Best New Course in America by Golf Digest when it opened in 1987, Heather Glen continues to deliver a memorable round of golf.

The fairways are generous but make sure you avoid the pot bunkers, especially the “Devil’s Mistress.” The fourth hole on the White Course, home of the “mistress,” has provided a sandy grave for many golf dreams over the years.

Inspired by the design work of A.W. Tillinghast, Shaftesbury Glen, the newest of the Glens Group courses, is renowned for the quality of its greens and playability. One of the area’s few remaining layouts with bentgrass greens, Shaftesbury’s putting surfaces are impeccable, particularly in the spring and fall peak seasons.

The challenge can be getting to the greens, which are elevated and often protected by the finger bunkers Tillinghast made famous.

One of the first dozen courses to open in the Myrtle Beach area, Possum Trot is an institution. It’s not as challenging as its sister courses, but Possum Trot touts itself as the friendliest course in the area and it delivers.

The Verdict: Unquestionably one of the best Myrtle Beach golf packages. The course lineup is outstanding, the value speaks for itself, and there is very little driving required. Throw-in Chianti South, a great Italian restaurant located less than 1/4 –mile from Village at the Glens, and you’ve got a winner on your hands. Eight rounds, four nights accommodations, free lunch every day and outstanding golf is a tough combination to beat.

Big Break Episode 8 Preview: An Anthony Fireworks Show Awaits?

November 24, 2014 by Chris King

It’s Thanksgiving week and we are our counting blessings as we await the eighth episode of Big Break Myrtle Beach. There are only six contestants remaining, and Charlie, the favorite in our eyes, still holds the super immunity he earned in episode one. Will Jimmy, who hasn’t earned immunity since week two, get sent home or will he rise to the challenge yet again? The mercurial Anthony promises a fireworks show, so there should be no shortage of drama. Enjoy a preview of episode eight.

 

 

Big Break Myrtle BeachSee who's still in the competition! 

Inaugural Myrtle Beach Fall Classic Comes Up Aces

November 21, 2014 by Chris King

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The final putt has dropped at the inaugural Myrtle Beach Fall Classic, and the tournament was, by all accounts, a rousing success. A 72-hole, two-man team event, the Fall Classic was played on eight of Myrtle Beach’s best golf courses.

Players were placed into one of four flights based on their USGA handicap and a different format of play was used each day. The tournament attracted players from 28 states and Canada, and the flight winners reflected the event’s geographic diversity.

Geoff and Andrew Richards, a father-son team from Alpharetta, Ga., won the Masters Flight, while Richard Dutcher from Charlotte, N.C., and Robert Mieczkowski of Laurance Harbor, N.J., teamed up to win the U.S. Open Flight.

North Myrtle Beach’s Darin Epps and Otto Susec of Chandler, Az., captured the Open Championship Flight, and the husband-wife team of Gerald and Leisa McCredie of Howie in the Hills, Fl., won the PGA Championship Flight.

“My experience was phenomenal,” Earnest Mack of Hanover, Md., said. “I would do this again in a heartbeat. I really liked the format, the people and the camaraderie.”  

The Fall Classic was played at Caledonia, True Blue, Grande Dunes, King’s North, the Fazio and Norman courses at Barefoot Resort, TPC Myrtle Beach and Prestwick.

“Beautiful courses,” said Mark Posten, Laplata, Md. “Every course was top notch and in great shape; everybody at the courses were nice. I can’t brag enough about the four courses we played.”

In addition to golf, players received a gift bag, a Sunday evening welcome party, and a post-tournament banquet (see photo gallery) that included a plated dinner and open bar.

The tournament formats were, in order, best ball, Texas scramble, combined net team score and a scramble.

The Fall Classic was the first of two new events Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday is debuting in the coming months. The inaugural Preseason Season Classic, a 54-hole, two-man team event, will be played February 2-4. The Preseason Classic will feature another strong golf course lineup – True Blue, Glen Dornoch, Panther’s Run, Tradition Club, Wild Wing Avocet and The Witch – and great value at just $195 per person.

Use These Holes To Create Your Own Big Break Myrtle Beach Challenge

November 20, 2014 by brasierjd63@yahoo.com

You can use the Faux ruins on the Love Course to create your own Big Break challengeAre you planning a few practice shots through window ruins at Barefoot Resort’s Love Course? If you’ve been watching Big Break Myrtle Beach on Golf Channel, I bet you are. My guess is the marshals will be somewhat forgiving if they see you do it.

It’s particularly fun to play a course – and hit a shot – that you’ve seen the pros tackle. On the Grand Strand, The Dunes Golf and Beach Club (Senior Tour Championship), TPC of Myrtle Beach (Senior Tour Championship) and Wachesaw East (four LPGA Tour events) quickly come to mind.

Perhaps you’ve dropped a ball by the plaque in the 15th fairway at The Dunes Club where Jay Sigel launched a 5-wood shot that dropped into the cup for double eagle at the 1994 Senior Tour Championship. I know I have.

Now, thanks to the current run of Big Break Myrtle Beach on Golf Channel, we can add four more Grand Strand layouts – three at Barefoot Resort and another at Pawleys Plantation - to the list of TV courses.

Though new episodes will continue to run through December, you can already be sure to see visiting golfers at the Love Course taking a few extracurricular shots through the window (a Big Break challenge) on the faux plantation house ruins at No. 4.

Big Break is featuring some of the great holes at the four courses. But the competition won’t show you every hole of each course. So here’s a guide to holes you may or may not see on TV, but will remember after playing each layout:

No. 16 Barefoot Love: A lot of fun off the tee, this (412 yards from the tips) par-4 features a beautifully sculpted split fairway separated by sand and waste. There’s a small carry over marsh off the tee then more water and marsh on both left and right.  With no greenside bunkers, shots can be rolled up slope in front of the green and onto the putting surface.

Challenge shot: Try to reach the green from the bunker (about 125 yards out) in the waste area that separates the landing areas.

No. 10 Barefoot Dye: Hardly the toughest hole on the course, the 344-yard (from the tips) par-4 is a real beauty with a lake stretching the entire left side of the fairway until giving way to a series of four front bunkers below an elevated green offering a dramatic view of the entire hole.

Challenge shot: Getting up and down from one of the cluster of bunkers behind the big tabletop green.

No. 9 Barefoot Fazio: A beautiful, 408-yard par-4 requiring a modest carry off the tee over water with water extending along the right side of the dogleg right. There’s generous bailout room to the left unless you find a large horseshoe-shaped bunker not far off the fairway. A back right pin placement on the triangular putting surface is especially hard to target.

Challenge shot: Reaching the green from the horseshoe bunker about 150 yards away.

No. 11 Pawleys Plantation: A long par-5 (563 yards from the tips), but no water or marsh to worry about. Sounds easy enough? Hardly. In addition to requiring two solid shots splitting trees on both sides, golfers must stay left of a sprawling live oak that blocks short approaches down the right side of the fairway. If you’re stuck behind the tree, you have to invent a low shot that somehow manages to avoid the sand in front of the green.

Challenge shot: Best score from a lie directly behind the live oak. Bubba Watson might not be able to open up a wedge, hit a shot over the tree and land it on the putting surface. The best shot is a low runner under the branches to short grass in front of the green. Then pitch up and try to save par.

John Brasier is a freelance golf writerJohn Brasier covered Grand Strand golf as golf writer and sports editor of The Sun News in Myrtle Beach. He also has written about Grand Strand golf for several national publications, including Golf Magazine, Golfweek and GolfWorld. A mid-handicapper with a history of luck on short holes, he’s made four holes-in-one, though much to his regret, none on the Grand Strand.

Caddy Girls Basking in Post-Shark Tank Exposure

November 19, 2014 by Chris King

The Caddy Girls got their start in Myrtle BeachThey’ve been featured on ABC’s hit show “Shark Tank,” but the story of The Caddy Girls began here in Myrtle Beach with an entrepreneurial college student looking to leverage two of the region’s primary strengths: great golf and weather.

Meghan Tarmey was a cheerleader at Coastal Carolina University working two jobs to pay the bills, and she wanted to make her own schedule and be outside.

As a bartender at two local establishments, she was more than familiar with the impact of golf on the local economy. In 2005, Tarmey, bolstered by a combination of ambition and hard work, decided to launch The Caddy Girls, a group of, ahem, attractive young ladies who would provide caddy services to groups coming to Myrtle Beach on a golf trip.

“I didn’t mull over the option of it working or not, I just did it,” Tarmey said. “I flew by the seat of my pants for the first few years, doing everything I could. Once I dropped all the other jobs and focused on my business it really took off.”

A business that started with six caddies now has more than 200, including 80 in Myrtle Beach, on its roster and that number is growing after the Shark Tank appearance, which shined a national spotlight on The Caddy Girls.

To answer the primary question most people have, yes, they understand the game of golf.

“Most of our caddies forecaddie, but carrying bags is something that most of them could do,” Tarmey said. “We have training videos, manuals, written tests and of course take them on a golf course to train. Duties include everything that a traditional male caddy would do.”

They just happen to be easier on the eyes than a traditional caddy. Their primary mission is to make an already enjoyable day on the golf course even better.

[Checkout the top 10 reasons to use a Caddy Girl]

With 80 caddies in Myrtle Beach, golf groups have plenty of options and if the initial reaction to the Shark Tank appearance is an indicator, the stable will need to grow.

“Shark Tank was a huge game-changer,” Tarmey said. “They took us seriously, recognized us as a great business, and the exposure of 8 million people seeing us has caused business to explode.”

Within 12 hours of the show airing, there were more than 100 investment offers and countless media opportunities, including an Inside Edition feature.

The Caddy Girls had already expanded outside the Myrtle Beach market, an effort that was accelerated by the show appearance. But just like so many golf groups, Myrtle Beach is the epic center for The Caddy Girls growth and development.

Big Break Myrtle Beach Episode 7 Recap: A Favorite Emerges While One Player’s Swing Disappears

November 18, 2014 by Chris King

Christian Heavens was eliminated from Big Break Myrtle BeachA road trip was taken, a clear favorite emerged, and the cruelty of the game of golf was reaffirmed on the seventh episode of Big Break Myrtle Beach.

First the road trip: after playing at Barefoot Resort & Golf the first half of the season, Big Break moved to Pawleys Plantation, one of the most scenic and challenging courses along the Grand Strand.

The beauty of the property immediately impressed players, but each had a job to do. The seven remaining contestants were given $500 cash and the opportunity to grow their investment during the first immunity challenge.

The challenge was a closest to the pin contest on the par 3 17th hole, which requires a carry over a saltwater marsh. Players, in an order determined by random drawing, got to choose who they would play. Win the head-to-head matchup and you take the money and advance until one person emerges with all the cash.

Christian, holding $1,500, and Charlie, with the remaining $2,000, advanced to the final matchup. Christian hit an excellent shot, finishing 9’11” from the hole. Victory seemed likely.

But Charlie trumped him, stuffing his shot to 6’11” inches, winning the money, immunity and along with it the role of favorite to win the show. He hit three shots in the elimination challenge and none of them were more than 8’10” from the hole, they were the three best shots hit during the challenge.

We are just over halfway through, but Charlie is the runaway leader in the clubhouse for the "Player You Are Most Likely to See on Tour Award."

The second stage of the immunity challenge was a closest to the line contest on the 11th hole Pawleys. The women had to hit the ball at least 200 yards, the men 230. Everyone got two shots and the two players closest to the line earned immunity.

Anthony and Tessa, who were both within six of the line, led by Anthony, who was 5’8,” advanced. But much as the story was about who won the challenge, it was equally about who didn’t.

Christian, who moments earlier seemed poised to win immunity, hooked both of his shots and failed to get the ball in play, which sent him directly to the elimination challenge.

Big Break Myrtle BeachHe opted to play Jimmy, who for the fifth consecutive episode failed to earn immunity.

The duo played holes 12 and 18, with the highest score going home. They both made par on 12, Christian after leaving a 10-foot birdie putt short of the hole.

They moved to the 18th and Jimmy placed his drive perfectly in the fairway.
Unfortunately, Christian’s pull hook returned and it made for a gruesome finish. He took an unplayable after his drive ended up in a hazard, and his third shot bounced left toward the water, leaving him with, to put it mildly, a compromised stance.

Needing to hole out from well off the green, he attempted to hit the ball between his legs and predictably chunked it. All of this is a long way of saying that Jimmy made a 5-foot par putt with plenty of breathing room to win the challenge.

Christian, who had been playing better and was one of the most likeable contestants on the show, was left to lament a swing that temporarily deserted him at the worst possible time.

WATCH EPISODE 7

Photo Gallery: Myrtle Beach Fall Classic

November 18, 2014 by Chris King

The inaugural Myrtle Beach Fall Classic, a 72-hole, two-man team event, is underway. Played on eight of the best golf courses in Myrtle Beach and all of America, the Fall Classic attracted a sold out field of 100 teams. Enjoy a look at the action.

 

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Big Break Myrtle Beach Episode 7 Preview: Can the Players Conquer Pawleys Plantation?

November 17, 2014 by Chris King

Big Break Myrtle Beach changes venues for episode seven, taking the show to one of the area’s most scenic courses, the Jack Nicklaus designed Pawleys Plantation. With the number of contestants dwindling, the stakes and pressure are rising. Check out the sneak peek below and tune in to Golf Channel Tuesday night at 9 p.m. to see how the players fare on Pawleys Plantation, one of the area's most scenie and challening courses!

If you've played Pawleys Plantation yourself, please share your review!

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Sold Out Field Poised to Tee Off in Inaugural Myrtle Beach Fall Classic

November 14, 2014 by Chris King

King's North will be one of the host courses at the Myrtle Beach Fall ClassicThe first annual Myrtle Beach Fall Classic, a two-man team event, is poised to welcome a full field of golfers to some of the Grand Strand’s best courses.

The 72-hole tournament, which will feature a different format of play each day, will be played November 17-20 and golfers from 28 states and Canada will be competing. The tournament was limited to the first 100 teams.

In addition to four rounds of golf, participants will also enjoy two nights of free food and drink and a gift bag.

The Fall Classic is highlighted by an unrivaled golf course lineup that includes Caledonia Golf & Fish Club, King’s North, Grande Dunes, True Blue and the Norman and Fazio courses at Barefoot Resort, Prestwick Country Club and TPC Myrtle Beach.

Six of the eight layouts have been ranked among the nation’s top 100 public courses, and Golfweek just ranked Caledonia (No. 24) and Dunes Club (No. 26) among America’s top 30 resort courses.

Golfers will be flighted based on their team's USGA handicaps and there will be a different format of play each day. The tournament formats, in order, will be best ball, Texas scramble, combined net team score and a scramble.

The fun won’t end at the course. During registration on Sunday, November 16, players will be treated to hors d'oeuvres and open bar.

There will also be a plated dinner and open bar at the awards dinner on the final night at Crown Reef Resort. Participants will receive a tournament gift bag, including Myrtle Beach Fall Classic logo’d apparel, among other items. The top finishers in each flight will win prizes and every player will have the opportunity to win daily contests and random drawing prizes.

The Fall Classic is one of two new events Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday will be debuting in the coming months.

The inaugural Preseason Season Classic, a 54-hole, two-man team event, will be played February 2-4. The Preseason Classic will feature another strong golf course lineup – True Blue, Glen Dornoch, Panther’s Run, Tradition Club, Wild Wing Avocet and The Witch – and great value at just $195 per person.

Golf Instruction Zone: Knockout Your Opponent With Knockdown Shot

November 13, 2014 by Chris King

Former PGA Tour Player Hugh Royer III, who is the director of instruction at South Carolina Golf Center, shows you how to hit one of golf’s most valuable and vexing shots – the knockdown into the wind. Royer’s tip – hint setup dictates success – will have you relishing the opportunity to play in the wind.

 

 


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Photo Gallery: Myrtle Beach Golf Courses That Play Along The Intracoastal

November 12, 2014 by Chris King

The Intracoastal Waterway provides a stunning backdrop for a round of golf, and seven Myrtle Beach courses play along the man-made body of water that runs from Maine to Miami. Enjoy a look at some of the prettiest courses on the East Coast.

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Big Break Myrtle Beach Episode 6 Recap: Tiger vs. Tiger to Stay Alive

November 11, 2014 by Chris King

Katy Harris was eliminated in Episode 6Great shots and a squandered opportunity defined the sixth episode of Big Break Myrtle Beach.

Just eight players remained and the first part of the immunity challenge took place on one of Myrtle Beach’s most popular holes, the fourth on Barefoot Resort’s Love Course.

The green is framed by the faux ruins of an old plantation home and players were challenged to chip the ball through a window in the ivy-covered ruins. The first two players to get the ball in hole would be awarded immunity.

Everyone but Jimmy, who banged the ball off the bricks, successfully chipped through the window, but no one got the ball closer than Christian’s 18 feet. In this challenge, the players closest to the hole went first and Christian, Toph and Tessa came up empty.

Charlie became the first player to...

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Golfweek Ranks Three Myrtle Beach Layouts Among America’s Top 100 Resort Courses

November 10, 2014 by Chris King

Golfweek ranked Moorland among America's Top 100 Resort CoursesGolf is an aspirational game. We all dream of playing the best of the best, and no destination provides more opportunities to make that dream a reality than Myrtle Beach.

Golfweek provided further affirmation of Myrtle Beach’s place atop the golf travel market with its ranking of America’s Top 100 Resort Courses. The list which was unveiled in the magazine’s Ultimate Guide to Golf Course Living and Great Escapes issue, ranked three area courses among the nation’s top 100, led by a pair of top 30 layouts.

Leading way was Caledonia, which was the 24th ranked Resort Course in America, followed closely by the Dunes Club at No. 26 and the Moorland Course at Legends Resort, which was 85th.

The Dye, Love and Fazio courses at Barefoot Resort & Golf were all ranked among the next 100, further validating the depth and quality of Myrtle Beach’s golf offerings.

A consensus top 100 layout, Caledonia is an unforgettable combination of Mike Strantz’ architectural genius and a stunning piece of lowcountry South Carolina property. Caledonia plays through soaring live oak trees draped in Spanish moss and along the Waccamaw Neck, a body of water that used to be home to a thriving rice plantation.

The 18th hole, which requires a forced carry into a green that rests in the shadow of an antebellum style clubhouse, is universally regarded as among the finest in golf, but it’s only part of what makes Caledonia special.

The Dunes Club, a Robert Trent, Sr., masterpiece that helped put Myrtle Beach on the map, is the area’s most storied layout. The course, which features uncommon elevation change, wide fairways and daunting greens, has hosted the six Senior PGA Tour Championships, the U.S. Women’s Open, and most recently the PGA Professional National Championship.

Waterloo, as the famed 13th hole is known, is the Dunes Club’s signature hole and concludes a memorable three-hole stretch known as Alligator Alley. The 11th hole, which plays along marshy waters from the nearby Atlantic Ocean, is one of the area’s best and most scenic holes.

The Moorland Course at Legends is among the most popular courses in America, in addition to its critical acclaim. The P.B. Dye creation features expansive greens and uses imaginative bunkering to generate visuals. The course, which has been ranked among America’s 50 most difficult layouts, is most known for the par 4 16th hole, otherwise known as Hell’s Half Acre.

The 270-yard hole presents the ultimate risk-reward decision, offering players a shot at eagle or much, much worse for those who find the wrong bunker.

Big Break Myrtle Beach Episode 6 Sneak Peek: A Window of Opportunity Awaits

November 10, 2014 by Chris King

The sixth episode of Big Break Myrtle Beach touts a window of opportunity, both literal and figurative in this case, as the show moves to the Love Course at Barefoot Resort.

The players will apparently be challenged to play through the faux ruins of the old plantation home on the fourth hole of the Love Course, one of the area’s most popular layouts.

Enjoy a sneak peek of the episode and don’t forget to tune in to Golf Channel Tuesday night at 9 p.m.

A Second Chance Made These Myrtle Beach Golf Holes Stars

November 07, 2014 by brasierjd63@yahoo.com

The 11th hole at Dunes Club benefitted from a dramatic makoverGolf holes don’t change very often – not the actual routing, anyway.

Sure, trees are trimmed and removed, new irrigation systems are put in the fairways and greens are sometimes reshaped and frequently planted with the best new grass available.

But blowing up a hole and starting over? Hardly ever done. Nobody wants to make the time and investment (shutting down the hole and/or course) and risk striking out.

Yet it has happened at several of the best Myrtle Beach golf courses. And with spectacular results.

A few of Myrtle Beach golf's most popular holes at some of its most high-profile courses bear little resemblance to their original form.

Here’s a few examples where starting over – or making dramatic changes – resulted in home runs:
 

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Size Does Matter When Gators Brawl on Golf Course

November 07, 2014 by Chris King

What better way to start your Friday than watching two alligators fight on a golf course! We aren't sure what led to this scrap or where it occurred - it wasn't here in Myrtle Beach - but there did appear to be a clear winner and loser and it least one lost tooth!

 

Big Break Myrtle Beach Episode 5: One Second and a $10,000 Decision

November 06, 2014 by Chris King

As Big Break Myrtle Beach nears the halfway point, just how tenuous each player’s existence on the show is was brought into focus in Episode Five. Watch as one solitary second helped send a player home, and Charlie was forced to confront a $10,000 question.

Hugh Royer’s South Carolina Golf Center Opens at Shaftesbury Glen

November 05, 2014 by Chris King

South carolina golf center opened on Nov 1Hugh Royer III has played golf at the highest level, spending three years on the PGA Tour. He has won internationally on the South African Tour and has four domestic wins on what is now the Nationwide Tour.


Great as his success on the course has been, Royer’s calling lies in his ability to teach the game. The beneficiary of Royer’s accumulated wisdom and his ability to make a complicated game (relatively) simple will be Myrtle Beach golfers.


On November 1, the South Carolina Golf Center at Shaftesbury Glen opened its sparkling new facility with Royer in charge of a three-person staff committed to helping people improve their golf games.


While Royer has competed against the game’s best, the South Carolina Golf Center, a V-1 Digital Coaching System Branded Academy, will cater to golfers of all skill levels. Royer and his staff will provide individual instruction to everyone from touring pros to beginners, in addition to offering 1-, 2- and 3-day golf schools, and junior clinics.


The golf schools, which will feature 3 hours of daily instruction and a nine-hole playing lesson will range in price from $200 to $400. Golf school participants will receive video analysis and evaluation and game improvement recommendations.


“What I think we’ve tried to create is a comfortable atmosphere for people who want to take lessons, practice and get better at golf,” Royer said. “The way I teach is very simple. The technical stuff is in there, but I try not to confuse or overwhelm (students). I tell everyone I teach I want the golf swing to be simple, yet efficient.”


The Golf Center clubhouse – an 1,800-square-foot building complete with hitting bays, state-of-the-art technology, and a lounge area with flat screen televisions, offers a comforting refuge to the Center’s students. Among the golf center amenities are a V1 Digital Coaching System and Flightscope, a launch monitor that will help players understand their game and the equipment they need to succeed.


In addition to the golf school offerings, players will have the opportunity to purchase a monthly range membership for $30 that includes access to clinics and the launch monitor.


Shaftesbury Glen is an ideal host for the South Carolina Golf Center as it’s easy to get to, located just minutes from Highway 22, features an outstanding design, and is always in superb condition. When construction of the short game area is complete next spring, the Golf Center will have facilities that rival any in the area.


Shaftesbury also offers the added luxury of having apartments above clubhouse that students (or players on a golf package) can stay in. The two-bedroom units are new, spacious and include a full kitchen and living room.


With Royer, whose credentials as player and a coach are impeccable, at the helm, the SC Golf Center is positioned to become one of the top golf schools in the region.  


Whether you are a junior golfer hoping to earn a college scholarship or a 25 handicapper looking to break 100, Royer is going to enjoy the experience.


“Do you want to get better?” Royer asked. “Do you want to have fun getting better? I’m going to have fun teaching.”

Big Break Myrtle Beach Episode 5 Recap: The Value of a Second and the $10,000 Question

November 04, 2014 by Chris King

Carolin Pinnegar's time on Big Break came to an unfortunate end. The fifth episode of Big Break Myrtle Beach highlighted the importance of every second and left Charlie to ponder a $10,000 question.

As the season nears its halfway point, the familiar colored golf balls returned to the breakfast table as a way of determining teams for the day’s immunity challenge. Contestants choose a ball but were then forced to pass it to the person on their right.

The end result was teams that weren’t of the participants choosing, and it led to good fun. The immunity challenge saw players hitting approximately 20 yards off the front of the green, and the team that hit the most balls on the green without hitting a ball past a previous shot would win immunity and $2,000.

The teams of Jimmy, Christian and Toph and Emily, Charlie and Carolin both hit their first shot to the back of the green, leaving the entire putting surface to hit into. Unfortunately, the second player on each team – Christian and Carolin – hit the ball to far and ended each squad’s hopes after just one shot.

Conversely, Anthony, Katy and Tessa, a team seemingly destined for controversy, recovered from a bad start. Anthony led off with a poor shot when his ball came to rest in the middle of the green, leaving them little room to work with. But the trio rebounded and hit six shots before their run came to an end, winning the challenge and a one-way ticket to the next episode.

The following stage of the immunity challenge moved to the par 3 15th hole on the Dye Course where the players were broken down into two-person teams.

The first player hit the tee shot while the second player sprinted to the green to putt out. The winner was determined by the total time it took get the ball in the hole plus 10 seconds for each stroke.

Sounds odd but it produced the closest challenge to date. All three teams – Charlie-Jimmy, Toph-Christian, and Emily-Carolin made par, so time was the determining factor.

Charlie and Jimmy were announced at 1:20, followed by Emily-Carolin, who finished in 1:21, leaving Carolin to lament the time she spent watching her first putt instead of chasing the ball. Toph and Christian were the last team to go and the they registered a blistering 1:16, good enough to gain immunity and a $2,500 shopping spree at Dick’s Sporting Good.

Emily and Carolin, by virtue of finishing one second back, were in elimination and they had to decide whether they wanted Jimmy or Charlie, who held the super immunity challenge he won in episode 1, to join them. Charlie opted not to use the super immunity, keeping alive his chances of collecting $10,000, and dared the ladies to pick him.

They didn’t.

Jimmy joined Emily and Carolin for a two-stage challenge on the 12th hole of the Dye Course at Barefoot Resort. The players played the hole from two locations, the first started 122 yards from the tee on a side hill lie.

Only Emily hit the green on the first shot, and Jimmy was in a deep bunker, seemingly in the most trouble. Unfortunately, Carolin chunked a routine chip, barely got the ball to the green and three-putted. It took her five strokes. Emily comfortably two-putted for three, while Jimmy made a nervy 5-footer for 3.

Jimmy provided Carolin hope on the 12th tee box when hooked his drive into wispy grass, but he wisely took an unplayable and eventually stiffed his fourth shot. Carolin made her birdie, but Jimmy calmly sank his par putt to eliminate her.

Carolin, who had previously played well, saw her dream come to an end due to one bad day – and one second

Kumbaya
Anthony, whose verbal antics have often put him at the center of attention, said he was going to mind his own business in the short term, and he did. Earning immunity surely helped his cause, but hey, he was a man of his word.

That could’ve turned ugly
When Christian, with the entire green to work, hit the rope and eliminated his team in the opening round of the immunity challenge, Toph was upset. He didn’t lash out like Anthony, but he was frustrated, something he made clear in the off-course interview. Then he was, to his chagrin, paired with Christian in the par 3 challenge. Toph hit a very good shot into the green and Christian had to make a testy pat putt that eventually earned them immunity. If that shot didn’t go, Toph’s head may have exploded. Instead, they earned a shopping spree and celebrated immunity. Such is life on the razor’s edge on Big Break.

46th Annual George Holliday Memorial Junior Golf Tournament Accepting Entries

November 04, 2014 by Chris King

the george holliday memorial tournament will be played november 27-29If you have a competitive junior golfer in the family, you need to be in Myrtle Beach this Thanksgiving.

The 46th annual George Holliday Memorial Junior Golf Tournament will be played November 27-29 on King’s North, Southcreek and the West Course at Myrtle Beach National, one of the area’s premier properties.

One of the most storied and prestigious junior events in South Carolina, the 54-hole tournament is open to the first 240 competitors and there will be multiple divisions for boys and girls. The entry fee of $165 includes three rounds of golf, daily lunch and a welcome gift. Entry is open through November 23.

[Register for the George Holliday Memorial Junior Golf Tournament]

Boys and girls ages 10 through 18 are eligible to compete in an event whose past competitors include U.S. Open champion Lucas Glover, PGA Tour champions Jonathan Byrd and D.J. Trahan and LPGA Tour member Kristy McPherson.

The boys' division consists of three age levels: 10-11, 12-13 and 14-18. There are two age brackets in the girls' division: 10-12 and 13-18.

The tournament annually attracts a field comprised of top juniors from across the nation, including players from 16 states and Canada in 2013.

The event was established to honor George Holliday, a successful junior and collegiate golfer, who died tragically in a 1967 automobile accident at the age of 22. Holliday was an outstanding golfer at Wofford College. He held a 69 stroke average in 40 matches, a mark that remains a school record.

Furthermore, the Galivants Ferry, S.C. native excelled off the course, holding a 4.0 GPA. He believed that his experience as a junior golfer played vital role in his growth and development.  His family created the tournament to give juniors the opportunity to compete and enjoy the game of golf that teaches so many valuable life lessons.

Unexpected Challenges Await on Episode 5 of Big Break Myrtle Beach

November 03, 2014 by Chris King

Episode 5 of Big Break Myrtle Beach airs Tuesday night at 9 p.m. on Golf Channel and mystery is in the air. In the sneak peek (watch below), contestants sound bewildered.

Mix in images of players sprinting on the course and it appears that unexpected drama awaits us!

If you missed last week’s episode, you can read a quick review or watch the show in its entirety.

Otherwise, tune in Tuesday night!

Inaugural Myrtle Beach Preseason Classic to be Played in February

October 31, 2014 by Chris King

Glen Dornoch will host the first Myrtle Beach Preseason ClassicWith cold weather beginning its inevitable descent on much of the nation, many golfers have grudgingly retired their clubs to the closet for the winter. If we have anything to do with it, the stay will be short.

Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday is proud to announce the inaugural Myrtle Beach Preseason Classic, which will be played February 2-4 on six of the area’s most popular courses. The courses hosting the 54-hole tournament will be True Blue, Glen Dornoch, The Witch, Wild Wing Avocet, Tradition Club and Panther’s Run.

Cost of entry, which includes golf, a Sunday welcome party with complementary food and drinks, a welcome gift, a Wednesday awards lunch and more, is just $195 per person. The event is limited to the first 100 teams. Individuals are welcome to signup and they will be partnered up.

[Register for the Myrtle Beach Preseason Classic]

The two-man team event will feature a different format of play each day and teams will be flighted based on their USGA handicap. Teams will play best ball in the event's opening round, followed by combined net team score and a Texas scramble.

“The Myrtle Beach Preseason Classic is an ideal way for golfers to kickoff their 2015 season,” said Jeff Monday, MBGH’s tournament director. “The tournament formats are player friendly, the courses are outstanding, and our February weather is typically good, especially when compared to what our friends in the Northeast and Midwest experience. “

The golf course lineup, which features some of the best layouts in Myrtle Beach and all of America, will be the event’s primary attraction.

Glen Dornoch is one of the Myrtle Beach area’s most popular courses. The layout is renowned for the difficulty and beauty of its three finishing holes, all of which bring the Intracoastal Waterway into play.

Panther’s Run was the second of Ocean Ridge Plantation’s quartet of Big Cats, and the Tim Cate design is a 4.5-star course, according to Golf Digest. With pristine greens and a creative layout, Panther’s Run is a long-time favorite.

The Witch is one of Dan Maples finest works. The course plays through a cypress swamp and is as pretty as it is daunting. There is no housing, giving golfers an opportunity to experience the area’s native terrain, traversing the swamps on more than 4,000 feet of bridges.

Tradition Club is the Myrtle Beach area’s only Ron Garl design. As the name implies, this 4.5-star layout is a classic design and has long been one of the Myrtle Beach area’s most underrated tracks.

True Blue is 77th on Golf Magazine’s prestigious list of the “Top 100 You Can Play,” a ranking of the nation’s best public courses. The Mike Strantz design is one the area’s boldest and best. Everything at True Blue is big – the fairways, greens, bunkers and most of all, the fun.  

The Avocet Course at Wild Wing is a Larry Nelson design that counts playability among it greatest strengths, highlighted by the 308-yard 14th hole, one of the area’s shortest par 4s and a very good risk-reward challenge.

For more information, go to www.MyrtleBeachPreseason.com.

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