By Cameron Healey
As I reflect on 2015, I’m confident I am not alone when I say it was an epic year for the Pacific Northwest golf region. Spearheaded by the 115th U.S. Open in town mid-June, and despite the inevitable post-event dissections and controversy surrounding the state of the greens and overall spectator experience at Chambers Bay, the veritable golfing delights to be had were many. Portlanders once again had the world’s best women golfers, including world #1 Lydia Ko, competing for the Portland Classic at Columbia Edgewater CC. And about 35 miles due west, 125 of the world’s best golfers were vying for one of 25 PGA Tour Cards on offer during the Web.com Tour WinCo Foods Portland Open, played on the Witch Hollow course at Pumpkin Ridge.
If that didn’t get the golfing juices flowing, we also had the world’s best women amateur golfers in town, tackling the historic Portland Golf Club for the crown of U.S. Women’s Amateur Champion. And, of course, we can’t forget about the Champion’s Tour, very ably represented by the hugely popular Boeing Classic, held each August at TPC Snoqualmie Ridge. I’m still holding out hope that “Boom Boom” Couples will finally win at home! He has made it clear that he wants to win The Classic, so perhaps 2016 will be his year. With that said, be sure to put a ring around the dates June 7-12 and plan to watch the world’s best women golfers in town for the KMPG Women’s PGA Championship, hosted by the Sahalee Country Club. For tickets and more information, please look for the KPMG display ad on pages 10-11. Or visit www.kPMGWomensPGAChampionship.com. Bring it on!
In this month’s issue, contributor Tony Dear takes a closer look at why the Scottsdale golf region is one of the best winter golf destinations for Pacific Northwest snowbirds. The combination of quality golf courses, first class accommodations, and entertainment options makes staying and playing golf in Arizona a low-risk, high-reward option. World class tracks, very attractive stay and play options, and relatively low airfare to what is generally regarded as the epicenter of Arizona golf. What’s not to like?
With the holiday season upon us and you’re likely wondering what to get the golfer in your life. We can help. Check out part 2 of our Holiday Gift Guide on pages 45-46 for great gift ideas that include Kalea, the latest ladies golf set from TaylorMade, personalized golf balls from Titleist, and outerwear from Northwest stalwart, Cutter and Buck. We also offer you an opportunity to survey the latest equipment review by regular contributor Ed Travis, titled “10 Rounds with the Callaway Apex Irons”. In fact, let us know what your favorite brand is and why.
So many features are worthy of mention in this month’s issue. Regular contributor, Craig Smith catches up with 2015 PNGA Men’s Mid-Amateur Player of the Year and golf product company owner, Reid Hatley to learn how golf proved to be the perfect elixir after almost losing his business to a devastating fire. We then catch up with Oregon Junior Golfer, Haley Greb. Resident nutritionist, Cate Ritter offers 5 Tips for a Healthier Holiday Season. For even more health advice, Doctor Harry Sese (The Golfing Doc) suggests six exercises to help you burn off those holiday calories in this month’s golf fitness column. Props to Bellevue Golf Team member Sam Saleba for volunteering to be this month’s model! Finally, senior writers Bob Duncan and 2014 PGA Teacher of the Year Kathy G-Jensen looks back on the PGA Tour and the state of the golf industry, respectively. Yes, there is much to be excited about in 2016!
Overall; there is something for everyone in the final issue of 2015 issue of Golf Today Northwest digital magazine. Enjoy, share, and if you have a story idea or just want to tell us about your recent low round, ace, or other golf-related story, please email me at Cameron@golftodaynw.com. Cheers!