Monday, October 18, 2010

Michigan's golf season winds to an end

I've got my last round of golf scheduled, do you?

I'm planning to play this week not for fun but for work. I've had a few review products show up at my door that need to be tested before the weather turns sour.

I just got a facebook message that Manitou Passage is closed for the season. Most courses up north can't be far behind.

Now's the time to reflect on what's been a great season. Both the spring and fall weather was good enough to extend the season a couple weeks on either end, a pleasant surprise for courses that have been starved for revenue a couple years in a row. Boyne USA Resorts reported last week that this has been the longest golf season in its history. Several Boyne courses are scheduled to stay open until the end of the month.

Looking back, the summer weather was stunning. I read somewhere it was the fifth-warmest summer on record in metro Detroit. Most of the weekends were rain free. The weather stayed consistantly wonderful ... 80 to 85 and sunny from June to September.

There were some cool first-time events that I'll never forget, too. The grand opening of the Golf Club at Harbor Shores was as good as any event we've had in Michigan (Just as good as the 2008 PGA Championship and 2004 Ryder Cup if you ask me). Watching Johnny Miller, Tom Watson, Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer was a once-in-a-lifetime spectacle.

Meeting Butch Harmon at the Loon Golf Resort in Gaylord for the opening of his golf school there was another treat. There's a chance he and Natalie Gulbis could return to the resort next summer, so stay tuned.

I even got the chance to play The Bear in its 25th anniversary. The legendary Jack Nicklaus design that spearheaded the growth of northern Michigan as a golf destination is as good as ever.

Speaking of bears, this blog will go into a bit of a hibernation mode as winter settles in.

But if big news breaks -- like if the PGA Tour decides to come back to Michigan in 2011 -- I'll post an update.