December 17th, 2012 - Weekend
It's almost weird that on December 17th, The Raptor can publish a Weekend Update. But, with that being said let's press on. Going back to the week in general, the weather was decent. Even though there was some rain early on...Wed Through Friday were sunny and the savvy player could generally find a game somewhere.
The Raptor thought that Sunday December 9th was a cut off day. After performing some routine bookkeeping chores in the morning, a decision was made to jet out to LS with The Squire and a good time was had by all. Teeing off around 11:45...the two of us managed to finish 18 holes in under 2 hours. The Raptor primarily did the driving whilst The Squire played all of the shots. The highlight of the round for The Raptor was a superb birdie three on hole #13 by canning a 8 foot putt to a front left pin placement and a perfectly struck Rocketbalz on hole #18. Unfortunately, the Raptor was not able to convert a tricky 6 foot sidehill attempt at another birdie...the putt lipping out...however it's safe to say that had the Raptor been using a belly putter, the putt would have dropped. This further solidifies the need for a ban on the anchoring method.
Pictured here are the ubiquitous geese...who generally live up yonder at WW but were "slumming" on this day...enjoying a refreshing dip in the pond near hole #3 at LS. Later on in the day these same geese could be seen strolling the fairway on hole #2...it appeared that they were involved in "doing dirty deeds...dirt cheap"
After some heavy rain on Monday, the 10th...the weather turned nice again and The Squire was able to get in rounds on Thursday and Friday at LS. As reported to The Raptor, he was the only player on the course both days. By Saturday, the weather was still decent except for some heavy overnight frost. After a busy day, The Raptor took a drive out to LS and played the par 3's Saturday afternoon.
Things were looking up for Sunday...the temps were going to be in 50's. Unfortunately, an edict had come down from the LS management that would now restrict non-members from playing at LS during the off-season. Undaunted, The Raptor took a drive out to the Downing facility and played the par 3's there Sunday afternoon. While there the Raptor ran into two WW expatriates...Dr. V and Joe P who were enjoying a nice walk...
The Raptor was especially impressed with the length of the Downing par 3's. My pass on hole #5 was iffy and I moved to hole #8 and mashed a nice Rockebalz into a stiff wind...The shot ended up on the front of the putting surface. Similar outcomes were executed on holes #11 and #15. However, the Driver was necessary. Whilst on hole #15 a surreal felling come over The Raptor due to the quiet all around. The Raptor was impressed with the bridge spanning the creek near the tee...officially named "Jocko's Crossing"
Special thanks go out to Downing Host Pro Frank Palilla who provided The Raptor with a complimentary hot dog. The Raptor is certainly disappointed that a 15 mile drive may be necessary to play the 3's but The Raptor is NOT giving up!
Can LS figure out how to make it work...probably not...even if they come back with a counter offer, The Raptor may just quarantine the facity out of spite...You know the old Judge Smales mentality..."Ty...some people just don't belong"...How tough can this be? OK...OK...there was some cart damage and it's possible that a non-member was responsible. But geeeze, how much longer does anyone think the Erie region is going to be snow free. And...it's disheartening to have someone say that the carts have been put away for the rest of the season, only to hear that there were carts on the golf course yesterday anyhow!
If any one was paying attention to Friday's news they know there are real problems in this world...some ruts on a golf course pale in comparison.
November 28th, 2012 - Weekend
So the USGA has clarified the belly putter situation...The Raptor is somewhat miffed since I had hoped to opine on the subject a couple of weeks ago. Now that the ruling has been announced, my piece is going to be of diminished impact.
As I listened to the talk show on XM radio this afternoon...most of the callers were disappointed about the turn of events. To call it a ban may be a stretch since a player can still use the putter...however, the player will not be able to anchor the putter to the body.
Interestingly, the old Bernhard Langer method of running the putter up the arm and locking it in place is still acceptable since there is some sort of swing involved.
Here is something to consider. It seems that most good ball strikers have putting woes. I have seen this on many occasions. Going back in time...Hogan, Snead, Palmer, and Watson always seemed to be wrestling with missed short putts.
Then consider the old guy with the cagey short game...usually the short game specialist can't break an egg.
Now this is only meant to expand the dialog but maybe some compromise could be worked out. In order to spice up the game...make it more fun for more people etc. the player could have the option for a illegal putter or an illegal driver. For someone like myself...the illegal driver is the choice...if I could hit it 320 yards then I could figure a way to compete against the great ball strikers who need an anchored putter to avoid those pesky yips.
At the end of the day, The Raptor would be having more fun since right now...hitting 220 yard drives on 400 yard par 4's sucks.
In the mean time the change goes into effect in 2016. Should there be separate rules for pros and ams? Absolutely not!
November 26th, 2012 - Weekend
The Raptor is here to tell you that editing these Weekend Updates has been a real treat as of late...I know...I know...it's been a couple of weeks but...The Raptor has been busy....
So for starters let's skip the golf stuff and go right into College Football. The season has certainly been an eye opener. Who would have thought it would come down to Notre Dame and Alabama. It should be noted that The Raptor despises both programs and it is with good reason...consider this....
The last season that Notre Dame won the mythical National Championship was 1988. This was a heady time for The Raptor. Having finished with college studies the previous year, It was with great fortune that The Raptor was able to picjk up season passes to Penn State Home Games courtesy of a fellow member at LVCC named Frank Palkovic. My future spouse, Krista and The Raptor started going to the games during the 1986 season and it was great fun.
We would depart Erie early Saturday morning and arrive in State College around 9:30ish. After a hearty breakfast at the Penn State Dinor (including a Sticky Bun or two), we would head up to Beaver Stadium for the tail gate parties and the game. Afterwards we would generally head back to Erie and on many occasions we would experience those terrifying journies on I-80 amidst the ice, snow and large out of control rigs.
The Nittany Lions had won the National Championship a could of years previously and in 1988 the team was still rebuilding. So, when The Notre Dame Team arrived at Beaver Stadium for a November contest, The Raptor was filled with a sense of forboding, The Fighting Irish had some talented players including Tony Rice and "Rocket" Ismail. The team was coached by Lou Holtz, who was in his third year there. The Irish were on a roll and looked to be heading to a great season.
Things went from bad to worse to awful as game time approached. The folks who normally sat next to me and Krista had sold their tickets to a totally decked out Notre Dame fan! This creep came to the game with his young son and he was a jerk! He would say stuff like "Look son, there is this years Heisman winner...Tony Rice" and he would say it super loud so that he could be heard all over the section.
The Raptor was fuming and Krista did a yeoman's job of keeping me cool, calm and collected. The Raptor could have pounded that (FOB) into the ground...like a spike. There were others in the section who were yelling at the creep (BTW, The Raptor is being diplomatic here...I could utilize other adjectives to descibe this guy). But who in their right mind would bring their young son to the game and pull that kind of stuff...that's right...only a jerk Notre Dame fan!
Anyhow, The Raptor decided right then and there to pass on the season tickets for 1989 and The Raptor has not been back to Beaver Stadium since. As a resuklt, The Raptor hopes Notre Dame gets their silllegleigh stuffed right up their collective cans!
Now on to Alabama...The Raptor doesn't really have any qualms regarding the Crimson Tide. Nick Saban is cool and the teams always seems to win when it counts. This one loss to Texas A &M? appears to have been a fluke. The Raptor didn't see the game as The Raptor was at Greg Tarbell's wedding and it seemed a tad rude to shuffle off to the bar to watch a football game. What really ticks off The Raptor about Alabama is that Joe Scarborough likes them...
Scarborough is the host of Morning Joe on MSNBC, He is a jerk too...He hails from Northern Florida,,,,possibly Pensacola and he must have gone to Alabama as he is always referenceing Tide this and Tide that and Roll Tide blah, blah, blah....The Raptor hates that kind of stuff. It would be delicious if Alabama could stumble and Scarborugh could shut his big "small government conservative" yap.
So, if there was a way that both teams could loose it would be awesome! So, in this perfect scenario, Alabama gets thumped by Georgia in the SEC Championship game and then Georgia turns around does a Cinderralla Story thing on January 7th and sends Notre Dame fans home in tears - The Raptor would then be pleased!
November 8th, 2012 - Weekend
SPOLIER ALERT!...This Weekend Update has nothing to do with golf...perhaps the golf related WU will come out another day...
One of The Raptor's favorite flicks has to be "Trading Places". The film traces the antics of Randolph (Ralph Bellamy) and Mortimer (Don Ameche) Duke as they make life miserable for Louis Winthorpe II (Dan Aykroyd)...during one of the final scenes, Winthorpe and his sidekick, Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy) have put their revenge scheme in place and when The Dukes fail to meet a margin call, and are left owing $394 million. Valentine and Winthorpe explain to the Dukes that they had made a wager on whether they could get rich while making the Dukes poor simultaneously. Valentine collects $1 from Winthorpe while Randolph collapses holding his chest and Mortimer shouts angrily at his brother about their failed plan.
Mortimer Duke is left alone on the trading floor screaming to "turn those machines back on!"
This same scenario worked itself out this past Tuesday evening over yonder at Fox News at about 11:13PM. It was at that moment that Fox, along with every other news network called the Presidential Election by awarding the State of Ohio and it's 20 Electoral Votes to President Obama. The Raptor missed all the ensuing excitement as I refuse to watch Fox News...ever...
It seems that Karl Rove, former advisor to President George W Bush, who can best be described as a "color commentator", went spastic over the announcement that his boy, Mitt Romney, had lost the election!
Rove became frantic..."Turn Those Machines Back On!" he exclaimed..."It's over Karl" Megan Kelly responded...and so began the sad realization on Rove's part that he had extorted and spent over 300 Million Dollars so that his "Super PAC", American Crossroads, could become another footnote in the dustbin of history.
The Raptor shall do no tap dancing on Mr. Rove's grave. However, The Raptor did cut out Rove's arrogant pre-election op-ed in the WSJ. In the piece, Mr. Rove states "My prediction: Sometime after the cock crows on the morning of November 7th, Mitt Romney will be declared America's 45th President...Let's call it 51%-48% with Mr. Roney carrying at least 279 Electoral Votes, probably more."
Rove then came back to The Journal today to perform the post mortem and complained bitterly about President Obama's "record shattering" 220 fundraising events over 20 months. In addition, Rove castigated an "anonymous New York Times Headline Writer" for putting "Let Detroit Go Bankrupt" to Candidate Romney's 2008 op-ed piece.
The GOP complains day in and day out about how President Obama has ruined this country. Well... onsider this...if the GOP could figure out how to avoid arguing about chicken stuff topics like "legitimate (cape)" and "self-deportation" they might win a few GD elections!
Meanwhile guys like Sheldon Adelson, Katl Rove and the Koch Brothers can watch their crowning achievements over and over and wonder...WTF...
October 25th, 2012 - Weekend
The Raptor couldn't resist...it was just yesterday that The Raptor was looking back on a long season of golf and wondering what was left?...all the stories have been told and all the events have been held...except...
Breaking News!...Ellery Tarbell has shot a 64 at Lake View CC! This is huge...The Raptor absorbed the details last evening at a Pros's Table set up at Buffalo Wild Wings. The Raptor had played a quick round up at WWGC in the late afternoon with fellow gimp, Don Fessler. We were able to tee off around 4PM and manager to cycle through 18 holes in about 2 hrs and 20 min. Finishing just ahead of the gathering darkness. While The Raptor isn't too keen on boring descriptions of shots, The Raptor is pleased to state that the par 3's were played in 1 under par yesterday which is....nice! The birdie was made on hole 11...Rocketbalz coupled with a 15 foot putt
Tarbell on the other hand had a slew of birdies on the way to a front nine score of 31. He played steady golf through the par 3 14th hole and then turned on the burners with birdies on holes 15, 16 and 18. The final score of 64 was one better than the previous course record of 65 set by Dario Cipriani roughly 20 to 25 years ago. It is the understanding of The Raptor that the "professional" course record at Lake View is 63...possibly by Mike Nicolette in a Charity Classic event. The Raptor is a little vague on that as I had thought the low score was 64 by Rex Caldwell...hmmmmmmm
The highlight for the back nine had to occur on hole 17...after a well struck drive, Tarbell was faced with an opportunity to go for the green on the narrow par five. The conditions were ideal for scoring as there was little wind at the usually breezy Lake View track. As a result of recent rain days the course could best be described as "under water". Tarbell hit what he though was a safe play...short of the putting surface but out of danger.
Unfortunately, he had not taken into consideration the movements of the group which were leaving the putting surface on their way to the 18th tee. One of the players (name unknown), ventured towards the fairway and was struck by Tarbell's approach. The ball managed to ding the unsuspecting player in the "back side" and proceeded to carom to the right near the sand trap. Tarbell executed a nice pitch and run to about 5 feet but could not convert the putt for a crucial birdie....Coulda...Shoulda...Woulda...
Needless to say the beer was flowing big time at the Pro's Table...well it was for Ellery anyhow as the rest of us consumed massive quantities of bottomless non-alcoholic beverages while munching on delicious boneless chicken wings with the mango habernero glaze.
Congratulations Ellery on a job....done!
October 15th, 2012 - Weekend
Who could have predicted that so many interesting stories could materialize pertaining to golf? The weekend started with continued discussion on issues such as: recent job openings at Kahkwa and Lake Shore, a controversial "witch" (sic) tiff over yonder at the LPGA and another successful weekend actually playing the game.
By now, just about everyone knows that Kahkwa Turf Care Superintendent, David Stull, is seeking a new gig for 2013...is it possible, Stull may end up over at Lake Shore?...now wouldn't that be special!....The Raptor is hopeful that these issues can be resolved quickly...after all golf is considered to be a "gentleman's game" but if you noticed the child like qualities of many of local golf enthusiasts perhaps it's more akin to a nursery school...
The unfortunate byproduct of attempting to make these updates interesting is that Erie is a small town and the principals in these dramas are generally included in the distribution. The Raptor has had discussions with several individuals who have played at the K-Club this season and most if not all of the respondents have felt that the facility was in fine shape. The Raptor had a chance to play there in August at The PNC Outing and the place was great!...
This pic of the 11th hole is a Raptor Fav...this par 3 has some nice contouring at the putting surface but it is just right for distance with a short to medium iron for the average player. After the golf, the players and guests settled into the Sunset Room for a delicious meal and awards...yum!
One quick note...one of WW's finest recently suffered a injury whilst playing last Tuesday evening. The weather had turned nice that day and the Raptor was able to get in a few holes. However with the sunset now happening at around 6:50, it is difficult to get in a full 18 holes...especially if one tees off at 6:00...Anyhow, our friend managed to hit a drive on hole 16 and proceeded to watch the ball flight as opposed to the ground and tripped on a tee marker...since The Raptor is VERY knowledgeable about foot injuries, my recommendation is to do anything the doctor orders...even if it means no walking etc.
Also, on that same day, The Raptor was involved in an accident at the club too!.. After playing the back nine with two friends, The Raptor wanted to get in the par 3's on the front and made a drive to hole #2 to try for an Ace. However, on approach to the tee box, the cart went out of control on the wet...leaf covered cart path and The Raptor found himself crashing into a mail box pole at the tee! With both a bruised knee and dignity. The Raptor managed to hit a perfect 5 iron approach to a back left quadrant flagstick and after a shaky cart drive to the green, rolled home a 30 foot putt! Are u kidding me! Then, The Raptor headed to hole #6 and hit a perfect Rocketbalz 5 wood to within 10 feet of a red flagstick....hmmmm maybe if The Raptor were to smash a knee cap before each shot...never mind...
On Friday, as the story goes..Brittany Lincicome sent out a tweet from an LPGA revent in Malaysia reflecting relief over a rain delay...meanwhile, Christina Kim took offense to this thread as she was sitting in a dark room in East LA getting ready to go through tour school. The two players traded tweets back and forth for a time and apparently have "defriended" each other over the whole thing! Wow! this is hot stuff!...The Raptor is looking forward to hearing about the make-up.....mmmmmmmmmm!
After much handwringing and gnashing of teeth, The Raptor was finally able to execute a visit to LVCC on Saturday to redeem my annual complimentary round of golf courtesy of the Developments Corp. Included in The Raptor's entourage were Lou Natalie and Matt Modica. The Raptor took special delight in developing a "yarn" about Matt M with LVCC pro-shop manger, Joe Alonge. I had Joe believing That Mr. Modica was a recent graduate of the big house and that The Raptor was showing him how to golf so he could rehabilitate himself. Joe was worried that Matt might be packing heat...it was hilaruious!
After experiencing a 2 hour frost delay which included a visit the the North East Marina...
...the course and accompanying budship were great...The Raptor played terrible! Driver...5 wood...wedge...2 putts...every hole!...nice par on hole 3 though...good for a net skin!
Sunday was a long day...the morning COD match was one of the best of the season. The group included Chad Bednarski, Tony Pep, Brian Tyler and The Raptor. While virtually no cash changed hands the contest included over 25 skill awards...long birdie putts...closest to pins...sandies...polies...it was awesome! The highlight for The Raptor was a superb 5 wood approach on hole 17 which found the putting surface...after an much needed two putt par, The Raptor/Bednarski team were able to seize control of the match for a stirring 1 up victory on the final 6 holes.
After the match, the players gathered at the 18th for hearty handshakes and a photo op
Subsequent to the COD match, The Raptor hustled down to Calimari's for a party for departing WW Pro Adam Singer. Adam is on his way to a winter gig at Fiddlesticks Club in sunny Florida and The Raptor sends out best wishes AND congratulations on his recent passing of the PGA exam...Adam is now a full-fledged member of the PGA...nice!
Later in the day, The Raptor decided to tune into the PGA Tour event on Golf Channel and was introduced to Jonas Blixt's family...Can someone explain to me why most if not all women from Sweden are of "supermodel" quality?
I guess congratulations are in order as Blixt held his ground and made some great putts on his way to a 1 stroke victory.
The critical hole at this tournament has to be the 17th.. a drivablle pa3 of about 290 yards...
Well, it was a lot to digest...get back to work and have a great week!
October 8st, 2012 - Weekend
Let's face it, the weekend sucked...The Raptor managed to play 18 holes on Saturday and Sunday amidst some rain drops but the golf was uninspiring. Perhaps a lackluster performance at the LPGC "Octoberfest" on Wed Oct 3rd paved the way towards mediocrity.
The Raptor was sooooo stoked to play well at The Park, but unfortunately it did not work out. It seemed like every joint in my frame was stiff and as a result, The Raptor felt like giving up the game. There were a few moments of brightness in an otherwise dark day and they happened early on.
The course was soft from some recent rains but through the first nine holes, The Raptor was at least in position to perhaps roll in a few putts on some nice putting surfaces but alas had zero.zero on the way to a 44. Then, after some additional choppage on the back nine, another bogey upon bogey tally gave The Raptor an impressive 88!...nice!
Part of the problem was the workout The Raptor received on lengthy treks to the putting surfaces on several of the holes. My cart master, Jay Honard, must not have got the memo that The Raptor is totally lame and walking is a chore. As a result, he left me with a few early jaunts that got me a tad gassed by about the 10th hole. No worries though...the fabulous turf over at the Park is without any ruts even though my right knee felt like a gator was biting into it by about the fifth hole.
The rest of the day was top notch with some great budship in the dining hall and impressive awards for the winners. As usual, many of the regions top "competitors" were able to cash in...special props go out to the LPGC staff who got conned into wearing some sort of "German" outfits and managed to pull it off with spectacular results.
The Raptor has to laugh though...whenever a buffet meal is laid out, the filler dishes, such as corn, salad, potato and rice are portioned out on large serving dishes whilst the good stuff is dished out in microscopic quantities. Wed was no different as two chubby "chefs" cut into the roasted turkey? and prime rib and served out 1 ounce potions. The Raptor rarely eats the corn and as a result an emergency stop was executed on the way home for a Burger King Double Cheeseburger to alleviate some hunger pangs.
The best part of the weekend had nothing to do with golf but had everything to do with the upcoming general election. First, yes...The Raptor is aware that President Obama had an uninspiring performance in the debate and as a result Mitt Romney is back in the race! The Raptor thinks this is a good thing, The Raptor would have seen a victory by The President as a sure sign that the race was over....this way all of you GOP supporters will have to pony up an additional out of pocket stipend to Governor Romney's campaign so that Karl Rove's PAC...American Crossroads can broadcast a ton of negative advertisements.
The real excitement occurred up at WWGC. It was just a week ago that The Raptor noted a lawn sign supporting Candidate Janet Anderson stuck in the ground near an empty lot facing the ninth hole. The Raptor knows the score and is fine with the disingenuous presentation. Ms. Anderson is running a slick campaign and as usual is touting her 26 years of experience doing something that "created jobs" While The Raptor is unsure how she created jobs, Ms. Anderson will certainly "fight" for Erie etc. etc. yawn....
Meanwhile, Ms. Anderson is running negative ads showing her opponent, Sean Wiley in numerous "greyscale" images that make Wiley appear creepy along with horrific statistics on what a chithole (sic) Erie had become while Mr. Wiley worked in County Government. This is all well and good but The Raptor has been there before and would like to point out that when a yard sign is stuck in the ground, it has to be "serviced" periodically so that the message continues to resonate.
What happened is that the wind, rain and awful recent weather caused the sign to fall and now it can't get up...by itself
This fallen ambassador could very well be a metaphor for Ms. Anderson's campaign...while support for Ms. Anderson is strong within the business community, it is a fleeting level of commitment. Folks are just too busy to get that committed to a campaign. Had The Raptor not pointed out this downed sign, it would probably fade away...however there is still time to rescue it and put it up again...there is always a chance it could sway an otherwise undecided voter...after all there are still a few weeks left in the season and somebody will eventually play WWGC that's not from Canada...
October 1st, 2012 - Weekend
There isn't much more that can be said about The Ryder Cup that
hasn't already been said by Rich Learner, Brandel Chamblee,
Frank Nobilo and David Feherty....well ok, The Raptor can try...
First, isn't it amazing that after all these years of The Golf
Channel the only PGA Playing Pro's that get any air time are
Chamblee and Charlie Rymer....ok ok...Trip what ever his name
has been on once in awhile but c'mon! David Feherty? Colin
Montgomery? Ken Schofield? Sir Nick Faldo? wave some
freakin money in Hale Irwin and Tom Watson's face and tell him
to quit grinding on the Champions Tour and get in the booth!
Then, Chamblee (a Tiger Hater) continually gets on his sop box
and opines on dumping veterans like Woods, Furyk and Stricker
for some younger, better players...well gee go ahead and put
Rickie Fowler and Kevin Na on the team...there pretty good,
right? The Raptor thinks Furyk's problem is with Fluff
Cowan...how bout that paryasis by analysis routine that Furyk
and Fluff were going through on holes 17 & 18? Nobody
could make a putt that way! You have got to be kidding me!
First, Furyk looks at it then Fluff looks at it...then Fluff
goes into a trace and looks at the back of Furyk's head whilst
he tries to envision the putt. The Furyk gets down on the
ground to retink his earlier read. The Raptor is an awful
putter but Furyk is awfuler.
The Raptor has a lot of Ryder Cup respect for Ian Poulter...this
fop is great at match play as evidenced by his victories in the
2010 Accenture Match Play and the 2011 Volvo, but his record is
spotty at best...he is a great proponent of the "Tartan
Look" but it doesn't appear that he could contest in a
major if his life depended on it...but, for him to have made
those five putts in a row on Saturday afternoon was in a
Another note on Luke Donald and Grame McDowell...how come the no
hat look? Everyone else wore a hat...The Raptor figures
only Robert Rock should be allowed to go hatless...
An aside on the future Ryder Cups sites...the 2016 site is
Hazeltine and the 2020 is Whistling Straights based on
some intel from the telecast, the PGA negotiates package deals
with the sites in three's so there is two PGA Championships and
A Ryder Cup in the deal. with that being said it would
appear that future sites for The Ryder Cup would be The Atlanta
Athletic Club, Kiawah Island and Baltusrol...you heard it hear
On the local scene, there is a month left in the posting of
scores on the GHIN syustem and this is a perfect opportunity for
the frequent player to get a bunch of scores in the system under
the soft conditions with plugged putting surfaces...a few big
numbers can't hurt eh?
Speaking of soft conditions...The Raptor bumped into a player at
one of the local clubs who was lamenting about the incidious
plugs strewn about the place which were about to sully up his
Sunday round...what could you expect? Go ahead and whack a
key droid and see where it gets you...tsk...tsk..tsk
September 26th, 2012 - Weekend
It's Ryder Cup week and The Raptor has been busy preparing for
the big event. So as to not miss the action, The Raptor
will record the whole program with about 30 hours of coverage.
The video will then be place in a treasured spot in my extensive
library of golf related video which I will never watch again....geeeeezzzzzeee.....
Last week end saw the conducting of the long anticipated 2nd
Annual "Raptor Cup" at WWGC. This long
anticipate match between players from LSCC and WWGC ended with
the WW gang on top. Weather was a factor as heavy rain the
previous day had mandated a cart path rule and periodic rain
during the day put a damper on an otherwise great competition.
There were several notable moments including LS Assistant Pro
Scott Herron's eagle on hole # 4 and Adam Singer's fabulous 31
on the back nine...
In The Raptor's match with Tom Madara, we each suffered from
some lapses' but none was more hilarious than our combined score
of 17 on hole #9. The hole started with Madara bouncing a
drive of Dr V's house.
The Raptor was so shaken by this development that my tee shot
was cold topped into the ravine in front of the tee complex.
After placing provisional balls in play, both of us hit approach
shots shot of the putting surface. The Raptor ending up
about 70 yards short whilst Madara was laying 4 in a greenside
bunker. After The Raptor placed a wedge chip about 25 feet
above the hole location in the back left quadrant of the putting
surface, Madara struck a tentative sand shot which left him with
a lengthy putt for 6, which he promptly knocked 10 feet past the
hole. The Raptor cozyied up my attempt for 6 to about 2
feet above the hole and Madara proceeded to miss and tapped in
for an 8...The Raptor then jabbed my attempt for a winning 7 and
saw the ball lip out and roll down the grade about 10 feet from
the hole...result Madara wins hole with a snowman...
This brand of exceptional golf continued through the back nine
and we limped through the final hole in the midst of a driving
rain storm to finish in a tie - each gaining a 1/2 point.
The Lake Shore team played valiantly but couldn't overcome the
home course advantage of The Woodsmen and succumbed 18 1/2 to 5
Pictured here is The Raptor with Lake Shore Captain, Ray Kallner
with The Raptor Cup prior to the competition...
The winning team has "the switch" flipped to the
emblem of that years winner...since Lake Shore won last year the
switch is flipped to their side. This is one impressive
trophy. As a back story, I voted to call the competition
The ShoreWoods Cup...lol!
After the completion, The Raptor had the honor of flipping
the switch at The Asphalt Bar & Grill.
The completion concluded with a picnic buffet of chili,
burgers, dogs and snacks along with a putting contest designed
by Rich Rocky and Tony Pepicello which was won by WW player
Denny Wildauer, who scored a 20 over the tricky nine hole
The holes were named after "The Beers of Whispering
Pictured here is some players preparing to battle at the first
hole, "Coors Light" enjoying a fine cigar.
In this pic, Lou Natalie is seen tapping in at hole 6, "Yuengling"
with the tee box for hole 7, "Smurf Piss" in the
The Toonament Committee had great fun organizing this event
and we hope to make it bigger and better next year when the
match moves to Lake Shore.
On the PGA Tour, Brent Snedecker utilized a red hot putter
on his way to a big win in the Tour Championship/Fed Ex
Cup.pocketing about 12 Million dollars in the process.
World Number 1, Rory McIlroy finished strong in a tie for
10th place whilst Tiger Woods was awful...finishing in a tie
for 8th with another chop, Hunter Mahan...Tiger only got
about 3 Million Dollars for his effort...he is obviously
over the hill and will probably never win again...
Locally, another head was chopped off due to a litany of
sins....most importantly...inadequate plys of crap wrap in
the locker rooms...The Raptor looks back to Caddyshack...
Judge: "McTavish...do you know what I just saw..."
Sandy: "They must be tunneling in from that
Judge: "Hmmmmmmm...Cervick Construction...I'll slap an
injunction....in the mean time, get this crap wrap
straightened out or I'll be looking for a new greenskeeper...
Stay tuned...this could get ugly
September 19th, 2012 - The
Recently while trading messages with a respected member of the
business community he asked...
"please give me a
’s accomplishments during his lifetime. ‘Betcha you don’t
come up with too many.
shouldn’t we blame him for our troubles. All he does is pass
the buck and takes absolutely NO responsibility for anything.
You Dems are in for a
rude awakening come November. Beware!!!"
what? The President Obama is going to go down in defeat?
Well...it certainly is possible that he could loose. But,
as long as the "gift that keeps on giving" aka The GOP
keeps opening their collective mouth it's a coin toss.
When it comes to rude
awakenings, Americans are used to it...in 1996, Republicans
fielded Bob Dole and got zero in return. Then, when Al
Gore ran in 2000, he proved to be sooo awful that he couldn't
even win his home state!. In 2004, Kerry lost the election
by a whisker (mostly because he was a"limousine
liberal" and the sticker wouldn't come off - plus Teresa
Heintz was a witch in a pagmina
In the 2008 election the
GOP trotted out John McCain and he WAS awful! - How could
anyone contribute a dime to that kind of campaign?
Now we are here in 2012.
Obama and Ronmey....President Obama has no accomplishments to
speak of but he has a pulse...when some one asks him about the
Bulls and the Bears he knows it refers to Chicago and not the
stock market... I am sure many of you cringed when Romney
made a reference to "sport" as in equestrian or
perhaps handball...c'mon Mitt get a life!
It's one thing to be a
"good man" but it's another to be a DB. How bout
the time when Romney went to the hardware store? The
Secret Service held the car door open for him and let him go
through with a photo op so he could pick up some nails.
Probably to show a horse....
Regardless of what happens
in two months someone is bound to be pissed. It's too bad
that 2 billion dollars has to be spent to figure it out. I
sure wish I owned a TV station...
September 19th, 2012 - Weekend
As predicted several weeks ago, it will probably snow this
weekend. Sat the 22nd, WW will be hosting 16 players from
The Lake Shore CC and what follows: is a general agenda for the
The pro shop has been monitoring the morning tee times in order
to make this event as well managed as possible. Tee times
are running from 7:20ish till early afternoon. The Lauer
Group will be at less than full strength since a couple of the
regulars are heading to Florida to experience a visit to the
wild life. The Raptor has not heard from The Weber Group,
but I am assuming that they will have enough players to fill up
to two foursomes and The Raptor notes that the Scully Group and
The Harvey Group should also have a presence.
There have been 14 players from The Raptor Group who have signed
up to play Sat and if these reservations are coupled with the
players in The Raptor Cup, it should be a busy day.
Rich Rocky would like anyone in the groups teeing off from 7:20
to 8:40 to let him (or myself) know if you are interested in
joining the post play party to be held at The Asphalt Bar &
Grill. here is the itinery for the day.
For those who are interested ($20.00 buy in) there will be
morning donuts and coffee, bloody mary/virgin mary on first tee,
a Keg of Bud Light at The Asphalt B&G. Chili (Rock's Secret
Recipe), Burgers, Smith's Sausages, Potato Salad, Cookies.
There will be a cash bar for beverages. A table is being
set up which will feature a selection of sipping whiskey's and
wine. Also on the table will be some cigars.
For an additional buy in there will be a gross skin, net
skin, closest to pin at $5 each and there are plans to have a
putting game set up with a $5 buy in. The theme of the
putting contest is "The Beers Of Whispering Woods"
Rich Rocky will set up a Cornhole Court and also a card table.
We are trying to figure a way to put a TV under the tent to keep
up with golf and college football.
The players in The Raptor Cup will begin teeing off at 8:50.
The chili will be available as you finish your round. The
burgers and dogs will be served after the Raptor Cup players
If you are interested, in the party please let us know as soon
as possible. If you are part of The Raptor Cup....engage a
designated driver...if you have your grapes in a bunch over this
whole thing there is nothing I can do to change what is about to
September 13th, 2012 - New Tee
As many of you may have heard, WW will be adopting a "card
system" to establish the weekend tee times for the month of
October in an effort to develop some fairness in how tee times
are given out.
This brings back some memories (Naturally) of The LVCC years.
The first incident occurred way back in about 1984 and the back
story goes like this. The Raptor had been playing with
three LV Members and we generally teed off at about 10:30 or
11:00 on Saturdays. At some point one of the group
suggested that we try to get a tee time at about :7:00ish on a
Saturday Morning. So The Raptor volunteered to go to the
club...one week in advance very early Saturday Morning...say at
5:45 to 6:00 to "get ahead" of the rest of the
membership and get a prized tee time at 7:10...
When The Raptor arrived at The Pro Shop (it was still
dark...btw), then Golf Pro, Billy Kaye was in the shop and he
asked in his classic cheerful manner what I was doing there so
early. I gave him the routine about getting a tee time and when
he showed me the book, all the times were taken from about 6:30
all the way to about 10:00. I asked Billy how they could
have gotten filled and said with a straight face that each and
every one of the times had been personally signed for by the
respective members that morning...in each case, the members had
driven to the club and signed on and then left the grounds.
This was obvious since the parking lot was 100% empty.
So The Raptor looked Billy in the eye and said that he was going
to go outside...take a fresh breath of morning air and walk back
into the shop. When I walked back in I told Billy that
there better be an open spot in the book for me at 7:10 so I
could sign on for that time. Fortunately, for Billy's
sake, the time was available and the rest is history. Our
group began playing early Saturday morning and we've been doing
it ever since.
It's obvious that Billy was engaged in a tried and true practice
of "allocating" tee times for the membership to save
the members the time and frustration of doing this process
A couple of year's later, Billy had moved on to try to realize
his goal of playing on the senior PGA Tour and Chip Clover had
been hired in his place. Chip had not been apprised of the
allocation routine and on one Saturday, early in his tenure, a
line of members formed outside the proshop entrance in the dark
of night to sign up for a tee time for the following week.
The line started forming at about 4:30 in the morning and by the
time Clover arrived at 5:45, a raucous crowd of 30 to 35 members
were stretched out from the entrance actually going up the cart
path to the parking lot. Dan Coughlin had brought down a
deck chair along with a newspaper and a "flashlight
helmet" to pass the time...
The stunned Clover was pretty much speechless when he saw
everyone gathered and the look on his face was priceless.
This ballet lasted perhaps one or two more weeks and Chip
implemented some sort of "no tee time" system which
The Raptor can not recall how it worked. Alas, too bad we
couldn't have just put up a "ball rack"
The anecdotes are meant to establish the comical nature that
develops when it comes to getting a tee time at one of our local
clubs. In the case of WW, we are not dealing with 400
members but a grand total of 60!...And it has come to pass that
what had been a reasonably well managed method of allocating tee
times has been canceled.
In closing, The Raptor will look forward to helping in any way I
can to get the members tee times. If you would like to
hang in there, I can continue to manage a roster and on the
other hand, if you want to take this opportunity to go on your
own that's OK with me. It was an honor to work out the
weekly logistics and I took particular pride in putting together
September 7th, 2012 - It Will
First, a couple of notes on The Labor Day Toonament. The
Raptor was satisfied on the turnout. The field numbered to
40 players and conditions were ideal. It did get a tad
warm on the back nine and The Raptor was feeling the heat for
sure. As The Raptor was preparing for the event, it is
customary to make a quick tour of the course to drop off the
close to pin markers and while doing so I discovered this cool
ballet that occurs every day.
The Turf Care Crew was out on the front nine working in stages
on holes 2 (green roller), 3 (tee mower), 4 (green mower) and 5
(approach mower)...there was also a gent on 7 who was grooming
the sand bunkers. Those guys a doing a great job and while
there is a certain group that would grouse about course
conditions, overall it's been a good year.
The Raptor never ceases to get tired of organizing an event and
the next one on the schedule is called..The Raptor Cup.
First, a little back story. The Raptor Cup was thought up last
season in the devious mind of one Ray Kallner. Ray is
presently membering over at Lake Shore and he wanted to set up a
"Battle of The Lakes" type event between Lake Shore
and Whispering Woods. I agreed and proposed that the event
be referred to as the "ShoreWoods Cup"
Unfortunately< Ray decided to call it "The Raptor
As can be seen with the photo, Ray constructed a
"trophy" and the "switch" in the middle is
set to the trophy holder. It's actually a pretty cool
trophy and an honor the have it named as such...It should be
noted that Lake Shore won last years event.at Lake Shore.
Surprisingly, it snowed that day...in early October.
This year, we have hoped to avoid the snow by moving the event
to Sat Sept 22nd. PGA Golf Professional, Richard Rocky has
blocked off the tee sheet for that day and called the block
"Raptor Cup". After some discussions yesterday
the Committee has come up with the following plan.
There are 16 WWGC players who have signed on to participate in
"The Raptor Cup" against 16 players coming from Lake
Shore. The format will be as follows: Each foursome
will compete for 3 points. 1 point each for individual match
play and 1 point for the 2 man better ball. The WW squad
is led by Richard Rocky and co-captain, Adam Singer. The
Rocky/Singer Group will match up against Lake Shore
Professional's Mike Gajewski and Scott Gommersoll.
Other WWGC Cup players include: The Raptor, Lou Natalie, Gary
Ebach, Damian Knight, Lew McClain, Jr. Lew McClain, Sr., Dave
Devine, Richard Brown, Mark Patrzia, Will Georger, Rob Brim,
John Torok, Tom Tomechko and Chris Komora.
The Raptor is in the process of lining up alternates to fill in
in the event that a confirmed player can't make it that day.
The Raptor Cup tee times stretch from about 9:00 to 10:00.
The tee times from 7:30 to 9:00 will be populated by the members
who regularly show up to play on Sat. Generally, there are
times for The Lauer Group (2 or 3 times), the Weber Group (2
times) the Scully Group, The Raptor Group,and The Harvey Group.
In order to give anyone playing that day an opportunity to get
involved, there will be things you can do to help make this
event a success. There will be a registration table set up
at the Pro Shop that day. You can sign up for the
gross/net skins and closest to pins which will be cash awards.
In addition, Members and Party Crashers can sign up for the post
Raptor Cup Party which will be held at The Asphalt Bar and
Grill. This party will include a food menu and a cash bar.
There will also be a cornhole courts set up and a putting
toonament will be set up as well. It is hoped that a Texas
Hold Em table will be set up and The Raptor is going to attempt
to set up a TV station so that attendees can check out The
Ryder Cup matches.
The Raptor has encouraged the Committee to perhaps set up a
Cigar and Wine Table (this could be cool).
As I type this, I am actually getting a buzz! So please
get back to me with any reservations or thoughts so that we can
put the finishing touches on the event known as The Raptor Cup
September 4th, 2012 - Weekend
The Labor Day Weekend has traditionally signaled the end to the
summer golf season as courses in the area begin preparing for
that eventual day when the last leaves have fell and the holiday
season is upon us. Fall golf in Erie is usually
spectacular and this season should be no different as the last
few. It's always a plus when that "Indian
Summer" arrives in the end of October and players can
enjoy one or two weeks of warm sunny conditions.
Meanwhile, the golf season has continued with a flurry as a
number of events have been contested and some champions crowned.
Just last Thursday up at LVCC the EDGA Senior BB (Streeter Cup)
was held and the team of Bob Johnson amd Jim Spoden crafted a BB
score of 68 to take top honors. Coming in tied for second
with 70's were the teams of Ron Coleman/Rick Federici, Rick
Carlotti/Lou Natalie and Dario Cipriani/Ron DiSantis.
Congratulations are in order for a job....done...It should be
noted that The Raptor also played in the Streeter, teaming up
with Don Fessler, Jr. The Raptor was able to cheer Don to a 12th
place finish with a BB score of 73. Those putts we
missed...all Obam's fault!
Further down the scoreboard in 31st place with a BB score of 81
was the team of John Eppinger and Bill Wilkinson. John
made a special note to get a plug in the Weekend Update so here
it is. The Raptor got a chance to chat with John up in the
LVCC Grill room after the match and we reminisced about The Lake
Shore Club. John is a recent expatriate of The Shore and
you could see a certain disappointment in his eyes as we
discussed recent developments. As many of you may know,
veteran Turf Care Super, Chuck Hintz has become a casualty in
the quest for perfect turf conditions and in the words of Judge
Smails "Lake Shore is now looking for a new greenskeeper"...
Up at WWGC a Labor Day "Toonament" was held which went
by the "It's President Obam's Fault" theme. As a back
"With a national election coming up there is quite a bit of
bad blood here at WWGC. Players are pissed about a wide
variety of issues from playeing partners to tee times to slow
play to green speeds and it's all President Barack Obama's
Fault...so stop blaming The Raptor"
The Toonament held competitions in Gross/Net Skins, Closest To
Pins and a 4 Man Blind Draw to crown "The Champion Golfers
of The Year" The winners turned out to be Lew
McClain, Jr. Gary Berti, Kevin Shaffer and Rick Burgess while
the silver medal was awarded to Lucas Marsh, Pat Harvey, Vince
Timpano and Chad Bednarski. Congratulations go aout to all thw
On a personal note, The Raptor was able to lock up a gross/net
skin with an awesome birdie on WWGC's always difficult Hole #1!
After hiting an average drive and lay up approach, The Raptor
was able to strike a "perfect" 52 degree Vokey into
the hole for a first ever three! It was great, but you had
to be there to get the vibe. Witnessing the feat were Matt
Modica, Adam Singer and Chad Bednarski.
Meanwhile, on the PGA Tour, Rory McIlroy won yet another big
event with a one stroke victory over an injured Louis Oosthuizen.
Tiger Woods shooting a final round 66 finished a distant
third...2 strokes off the pace. The big news from the
weekend had to be Phil Mickelson parlaying a claw grip putting
style to a 4th place finish. Mickelson also shot a final
round 66 and looked to be in great form in the run up to the
FedEx Cup to be held in two weeks...The Raptor had hoped to make
a disparaging statement about putters here but I just can't do
it...whatever works to get the ball into the hole is OK with
Finally, after a lot of suspense, Davis Love has selected Steve
Stricker, Dustin Johnson, Jim Furyk and Brandt Snedeker as his
Captain Picks in The upcoming Ryder Cup...oh well! Rickie
Fowler and Hunter Mahan can rebid for 2014...how can you not
pull for a guy like Furyk. His whole personna oozes ice.
He has got to break out of this slump now! Go Jim! Let's
get it on!
August 27th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
Turf care crews all over Western PA must be doing cartwheels as
a result of this rainy day. I am hopeful that there were
not too many outings spoiled as a result but one thing is
certain - it's got to be President Obama's fault that this
drought has occurred. After all his administrations seems
to get blamed for every other problem facing the world today....
Neil Armstrong dead...Hurricane in the Gulf...3 putts at WW Club
Championship....all Obama's fault.
Speaking of 3 putts this past weekend saw the conducting of the
WW Club Championship. Also, there was a CC held at the
Kahkwa Club. The uncomfirmed winner at Kahkwa was Rob
Nicotra however, this is unofficial as The Raptor has not been
able to determine that Rob was the actual winner - so some
congratulations are going out there.
Up at WW, Lucas Marsh was able to parlay a "snowman"
on hole #9 to a thrilling 3 stroke victory. Lucas becomes
the first player to win two CC's in a row. It should be
noted that on day 1, Lucas shot a fine 74 when the other players
in his flight couldn't break 80...then on day two, Marsh
made it interesting with his front nine 43 whilst Jim DelSandro
scored an impressive 35 to start the back nine even Steven.
Marsh managed to right the ship and made scrambling pars on the
final 3 holes to seal the deal...Congratulations Lucas!
Don Fessler Jr. finished alone in 3rd place, 5 stokes back.
In the WW Net Division, Thad Z hoisted the trophy with a two day
net score of 141 whilst Joe Puglese and Brian McGrath tied for
2nd honors at 142. The default winner of the gross
division was Tom Tomechko who shot a 80-79 - 159 to nose out the
hard charging duo of Chris Komora and Ed Duffin who tied for 2nd
honors at 161, Two stroke ahead of Gary Ebach.
The Raptor played poorly (as usual) shooting net scores of 84-81
to finish 24 strokes off the pace. The most hilarious hole
in this wreck had to be #4...after duck hooking the tee ball
into Zahn's Run, a ball was dropped about 140 out from the
putting surface. The next shot was topped into the same
spot as the drive and the next attempt found the creek up near
the putting surface. After lobbing a 60 degree Vokey onto
the putting surface The Raptor finished off the hole with a
three putt and a smooth 10...Ouch! It had to be Obama's
August 23rd, 2012 - The Gift...
There is a spring in The Raptor's step today!...well not
really...my foot is killing me...anyhow as The Raptor has stated
many times in the past, The Republican Party or GOP can be
called "The Gift That Keeps On Giving" I say
this with admiration. Consider the plight of Missouri
Congressman Todd Akin.
Congressman Akin was being interviewed recently and using the
sentiments of Dr. Jack Wilke as his guide, opined that
"stuff" in a woman who is being attacked "is less
likely to be able to fertilize". The Raptor can think
back to that classic line in the flick, Blazing Saddles.
Hedley LaMar is interviewing prospective candidates to wreck
havoc on the town of Rock Ridge and he encounters a particularly
menacing reprobate who lists his accomplishments and uses one
dirty deed twice. After LaMar questions the dirt bag's
faux pas, the dude says...ok...let's not go there...
Anyhow, Congressman Akin has doubled down and as a result the
GOP is wailing and gnashing their teeth over the prospect of a
Deocratic Majority in the Senate and another damn Liberal
Appointee on The Supreme Court by the soon to be elected Barak
Hussein Obama...thank you Congressman Akin!...now go share a
drink with Christine O'Donnel (The Witch From Delaware).
As a side note, The Raptor got a chance to golf at The Kahkwa
Club on Monday in the annual PNC Client Event...it was a great
time!...The Raptor always enjoys a visit to Kahkwa the facility
is awesome. The staff is responsive and the playing
conditions were excellent. It makes The Raptor wonder what
all the fuss is about?
Talk about First World Problems...supposedly, there is a cadre
of Kahkwa Members who have had all they can stomach over the
conditions of the facility and they are prepared to act
accordingly with drastic measure. Perhaps even resort to
some Medieval Torture. At the heart of this matter is
putting green speed plain and simple. After all, when a a
wealthy white man says jump...the common response is "How
So,,,some of the BOD acting unilaterally, (possibly called
"The Hysterics") have initiated a "whisper
campaign" and it appears to be working. As a result a
second group which could be called "The Sane Group"
People....People....People....straighten up! What is wrong
with this world? There are real problems out there and
your planning to battle over 1 foot on the Stimp?
Can you imagine a prospective member...just about to pump
$10,000.00 into the place, only to find out that it's a screwed
up "pillar to post?'" Christ....if your looking
for fast greens move to Pittsburgh and join Oakmont...Kahkwa is
a country club! It is not a championship course...well, I
take that back...if you recall the 2008 Senior event, it can
show it's teeth but who would want to have that kind of
experience day in and day out?
For those not in the know, a "conspiracy" was
developed by a few jokesters to move the tee boxes back to the
tips and make the putting surfaces so dry and so fast that they
were in a word..."awesome" The Raptor played pretty
good and shot a 94...I believe that year's champion, Ron Coleman
shot a 73 which included perhaps 8 or 9 birdies.
So go ahead...lay waste to the status quo...bring in some fresh
turf care staff and wait for the results...it may turn out to be
the right move or....maybe not...but for what it is worth...let
cooler heads prevail...
August 20th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
And what a great weekend it was! Temps in the 70's...no
wind...course in nice condition...staff totally exhausted from
the Friday Outing which featured over 120 players...
First, props should go out to Jack Nally who scored an eagle 2
on ole # 5 with a drive and a pitch...nice job Jack...welcome to
the "Eagles Club".
Second, Congratulations HAVE to go out to Ron Coleman on his big
time win in the EDGA 3 Day Amateur. While I have not
interviewed Ron to get the full scoop, his dramatic eagle 3 on
hole # 17 had to be thrilling...it should be noted that The
Raptor HAS also made eagle on hole 17, but it was courtesy of a
pitch shot from about 100 yards out...also, The Raptor can
certainly state that The Raptor Bump is alive and well since Ron
recently partnered up with Dave Irwin, Matt Modica and The
Raptor up at WWGC to claim the top prize in the best 2 of 4
Member Guest...which obviously inspired Ron to greatness...
In other news, WWGC will conduct the annual Club Championship
this weekend. For those who have yet to sign up, please
keep in mind that this event is a perfect way to close out the
season and measure yourself to the other golfers. There
are two divisions...the Gross and the Net.
The Gross Division will play from the Black Tees and is open to
anyone who wants to compete for the title of Club Champion.
The Net Division is for the rest of us. The tees boxes
used will be a "Blue/White" combination. Scoring
will be conducted by deducting the present handicap from the
actual score over a two day tally to identify the member who has
the right stuff when it comes to channeling a whole summer's
worth of play into one defining moment.
The Raptor always looks forward to this event to toss out that
occasional "snowman" which show up in this format.
If you have not yet signed up, please consider doing so so WW
can have a robust gathering on Sat and Sun afternoon at the
"Asphalt Bar and Grill"
August 17th, 2012 - A Tale Of Two...
The Raptor has been mulling over the impressive win by Rory
McIlroy at last weekend's PGA Championship and can not avoid the
comparison with the British Open which was lost by Adam Scott
Pictured here is the jubilant McIlroy, attempting to hoist the
Wanamaker Trophy (which weighs more than he does)
McIlroy put on a clinic over the weekend...after booming
out 350 yard drives, he converted just about every putt he
looked at and toped off the round with a long birdie on hole 18.
It should be noted that Rory needed just 23 putts in the final
The Raptor was suitably impressed on this win and is
looking forward to seeing how the young lad from Northern
Ireland can parlay this victory into about 77 more during
the next 20 years along with about 17 more majors to put the
icing on the dethroning of Tiger Woods as "The Greatest
Golfer of All Time" moniker.
Naturally the first step in this progression will be for
Rory to win the next three majors to complete a "Rory
Slam". It's possible to do this...The rotation
includes Augusta National, Merion and Muirfield. With
McIlroy's long game and short game both in Fuego, this will be
interesting. Toss in the Oak Hill Club up yonder in
Rochester and it's possible that Rory can complete a Super
Now consider The British Open of 2012 which was held at
Royal Lytham and St Annes. Adam Scott seemed to be in
complete control...until he got to the 15th tee.
Who among us hasn't missed a freaking 5 foot put to win
something? Whether its a $2 bet or a Club Championship or
The British Open...it is a miserable feeling. As The
Raptor sat in the Whispering Woods "Club House"
watching this event unfold it became a surreal situation.
On one hand I had a WWGC Member explaining the origin of
The Claret Jug while on the other I had Paul Azinger reliving
his demons from 1987 as he watched Scott collapse.
By the time it was over, Scott was a puddle and the Jug
belonged to Ernie Els...and now it can be told that The Claret
Jug got it's name because a drunk guy named Clarence had donated
the Jug after he drank some wine out it. This is no lie
Too bad Jim Nantz wasn't there to come up with some snappy tag
line like "A Win For The Geezers" or something.
And what about the other guy...Tiger Woods...well it's a
process ya know and there is no way to explain Tiger's
glitches...when he missed that short birdie putt on hole #3, I
knew he was in for a long day. Putting seems to be the
name of the game. Oh, there will be some moments of
glory to come...there is always next year and at some point
Tiger will make some putts. I just hope he doesn't come
out with a belly putter...that is a homo move.
July 23rd, 2012 - Little Johnie...
So the British Open is finished and it was such an awful finish,
The Raptor can't talk about it....well ok....I will talk about
it but only for a little bit. The Raptor is not a fan of
"links" golf courses, nor am I a fan of our own water
hazard courses of the South East. The look of the wounded
animal that crossed Adam Scott's face as he pulled his 3 wood
tee ball into one of the 17 sand bunkers which dot Royal
Lytham's 18th hole was painful. For starters, couldn't the
greens committed add one more bunker on hole 18 to get the count
The Raptor generally gets that same look when I hit a similar
shot at WW's 4th hole, putting my tee shot into a water grave.
Sigh! The Raptor generally follows the American contingent
in events like this, so I had my hopes pinned onto Brandt
Snedecker and Tiger Woods. As I watched Adam destruct, I
tried to key in on the video feed to observe the reaction of
Scott's caddy...Steve Williams. He looked a tad
disheveled. And that's good...a just desert after last
August's tirade at Firestone. Golf is a great game!
On another note, The Sandusky Matter has reached another peak as
the Penn State Administration has "torn down" the
bronze statue of Joe Paterno (The Enabler). The Raptor is
ok with this...really. While Paterno and his legacy are in
tatters over this matter, I have no doubt that the statue will
not get melted down in the near future...maybe it will end up in
Jay Paterno's basement...perhaps it will become a museum
piece...at least it was saved from an inglorious dousing of
blood or cow shit perpetrated by some Paterno Hater. Can
you believe that a human being actually did a fly over Beaver
Stadium in a small plane with a banner stating the the statue
must come down?
Ok...Ok this matter was horrific but in the aftermath, humor is
still possible...this is sick but worth reporting. Yesterday,
up at WW, The Raptor drew a match with Rich Rocky, Chad
Bednarski and Lou Natalie...teeing off directly in front of us
was the foursome of Adam Singer, Will Georger, Lew McClain, Jr.
and Matt Passalinqua. Rocky (who is also a PGA Golf
Professional) was seated in the cart with The Raptor and as we
drove up to the hole #1 tee box, Singer was preparing to strike
his tee shot.
Pictured here...Adam Singer...The Raptor...John Torok (what a
Rocky said in a loud booming Cal Neithamer voice..."Now on
the tee...representing Nike Golf and The Second Mile...Adam
Singer"...Singer calmly boomed a rocket dead solid perfect
and without missing a beat turned to us and said "If I had
sliced that drive into the woods I could have showed Little
Johnie how to wash up" This bent over everybody in
laughter and left Will Georger so spent that he promptly sliced
his drive into the woods with a majestic slice that is still
flying north towards Toronto...it was priceless...Snap!
July 20th, 2012 - Handicap
Good NMorning and Happy Friday...
There was a little bit of a buzz recently up yonder at WWGC over
some handicap issues and it brought back some fond memories to
The Raptor of Handicap peccadillo's from yesteryear.
As long as golf has been played there has got to have been
someone out there who was known for their "gaming" of
the system. The Raptor recalls an event which occurred at
LVCC many years ago (maybe 25) when a long time member had
become "cheesed off" over the stunning performance of
another member (call him Sandy) in the 3 Day Member Guest.
It seemed that Sandy had gone supra low whilst playing to
an 8 handicap and ended up winning a ton of sidebets...I
know...I know...any things possible. The
"investigator" obtained the Handicap Book from the
previous 2 week period to make an effort to see how Sandy could
get his cap from a 3 to an 8.
As a back story...before the convenience of the GHIN system the
golf clubs used a book with each members name in it and about 25
to 30 boxes next to the name to put scores in. As a player
finished his round, he or she would stop at the proshop and
dutifully record his adjusted score in the book. The book
was then turned over to some third party administrator who keyed
the scores into a software program...probably written in FORTRAN
or some other obscure computer language and then the tabulated
results would be posted on the bulletin board in the pro shop
the next day.
Well...what Sandy had done was a stroke of genius...He went to
the book and wrote in a series of about 15 82's which pretty
much assured that he would end up with a higher...but not too
high of a handicap for the upcoming big event...nice job Sandy!
This gambit has been utilized on a couple of other occasions as
well with similar results...one time in the LVCC Member Member
another KC managed to shoot some sort of ridiculous low nine
hole score in the presence of The Raptor...like maybe a 37 on
the front nine with a 15 handicap. Sure enough...this
Sandy had plugged in about 15 to 20 scores into the PC
system...all with the same date...the moral of this story is
that if you are going to do shit like this...make sure to do it
right....what a dummy!
Several years later, The Raptor was actually serving as The
Handicap Chairman (this is a title/job that I would not wish on
any man....even Hitler) when I was confronted by a most unique
situation. It appeared that one of LV's higher handicap
players (who always seemed to be winning Stags, Member-Members
and Club Championships) had pulled a score posting
hippty-drippty after his round. According to the handicap
computer, his score for that day was 96...but the dummy left the
scorecard next to the keyboard instead of destroying the
evidence and his card said he shot 86. It should be noted
that this dummy like to play alone,,,Due to this obvious lack of
judgement, The Raptor had to actually sit down in a meeting and
then ban him from a few tournaments as a penalty - geeeezzze!
The Raptor can think back to his early days at LV for some other
memories...each year the members would receive the "Chipshots"
booklet which gave out valuable information about bylaws, (like
when players who were registered as "Clergy" could
play) along with important dates for such awesome tournaments as
the Opening Day Scramble and the Southern Point Event.
Included in the Chipshots was the annual message from then
Handicap Chairman, Ivan George, who waxed poetically about
making sure to play straight and avoid any "shabby
manipulations". Unfortunately, this didn't seem to
register with some players. I remember one time when Gary
Conrath walked out to the practice green and told an offending
Sandy that he would be playing in the upcoming tournament as a 7
(even though his handicap at the time was about a 15).
July 10th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
It's a day late but here is your weekend update...damn!...with
Tiger (and Phil) out of the Greenbrier, the event seemed to be
heading into oblivion until Troy Kelly and Ted Potter, Jr. put
on a shot making and putt making clinic to save the day.
The aptor's interest was held sufficiently to totally forget
that the U S Open for Women was being contested too!
Needless to say Potter's ultimate win was another one of those
PGA Tour rags to riches stories that have been prevalent during
the past few seasons.
The previously mentioned Tiger aka Tiger Woods (who by the
way...according to most pundits has no respect for the game
and...is past his prime) struggled AGAIN with his wedge play and
missed cut. Mickelson, on the other hand has a propensity
to miss cuts...only to turn around and regroup for yet another
miracle victory....look out British Open...here come the
On the LPGA tour, Na Yeon Choi faltered slightly but managed to
regain some focus on the way to a Major Championship at what
appeared to be a super tough Blackwolf Run Course in Wisconsin.
Unfortunately, The Raptor was unable to watch the event live due
to perceived sheer boredom. By looking at the Leaderboard
App on my smartphone, I discovered that Paula Creamer was the
top American player, finishing in a tie for 7th...about 10
strokes from the lead. Sigh...Additionally,Cristie Kerr,
long considered a great putter, put together a solid weekend
tally of 152 to finish one stroke behind Creamer. I guess
Kerr will have to wait till later to resume her climb up the
rankings and bounce Stacey Lewis into second place (among
On the local scene, The EDGA Senior Tournament was conducted
yesterday at WWGC and the field included many of the best
players in the Erie area. Those poised to claim the top
prize included: Rick Carlotti, Tony Pepicello, Dave Hewett, Dave
First, Ellery Tarbell, Bob Paris and Mark Noce. If you
were not mentioned here, do not in any way consider it a slight
or slam (ok go ahead...consider it)...The Raptor drew a great
pairing which included the previously mentioned Carlotti and
Pepicello along with Tony's brother Jim who fashioned a smooth
78 on a challenging golf course. The winner of this years
event was none other than Dave Hewett, who shot a respectable 73
and nosed out Tarbell and Rick Seus by a single stroke.
On the net side, the trio of Chris Komora, Jim DelSandro and
Seus tied with scores of 70 from the blue tee boxes. A
special prop goes out to Jim Piekanski and John Adiutori who had
scores of Net 69 and Net 70 playing from the white tee boxes.
While The Raptor can not confirm this, Whitey Cleaver shot a
superb Net 63, which may or may not have come from the Gold Tee
boxes. The net winners can pick up their WWGC Ball caps or
some classic stemware at the Pro Shop.
For The Championship Bracket. the course was set up from the
blue tees except for holes 1, 17 and 18 which were moved ahead a
tad. There were a number of comments from the players
regarding slow putting surfaces and this could very well be
true. Overall, The Raptor putted pretty good...while I did
not make any lengthy putts, I did manage to make most of my
short attempts which generally occurred when I smashed a birdie
or par attempt 4 to 5 feet past the hole and then
converted the comeback...unfortunately even The Raptor is less
that perfect and I managed to miss a couple of these short
comebacks on the way to a 90...all I can say is - at least I
I would like to key in on 2 or 3 talking points. First,
Jay Willow working with WWGC Pro Richard Rocky did an excellent
job putting the tournament together...thanks guys! Second,
there are two ways to view the Senior. Historically, the
event was certainly more of a social competition as opposed to a
stern examination. As a result, there was a roster of
perhaps 100 to 125 players who would play. This year, the
tournament committee chose WWGC and the small turnout was
disappointing. I suppose the event could be held at
Lawrence Park every year and turnout would improve but this
seems to fly in the face of conducting these events among all
the local clubs.......
Was the course tough? It couldn't have been that tough
since there were a number of scores in the 70's...were the
greens slow? They did not seem overly slow to me and there
were only a couple of occasions where someone in my group
stroked a putt which "came up short" Did the
lack of a clubhouse deter players from enjoying a cold adult
beverage at The Asphalt Bar and Grill"?....probably
No doubt, the event will return to one of the clubs next
year...hey, I've got an idea! with the election of Mitt
Romney as our next President and the rollover of the US Senate
to the GOP party, America will once again be great and the EDGA
can revisit The Kahkwa Club...registrations will be back to
previous years totals and perhaps the staff can replicate the
setup from 2008 when most of the field failed to break 80....at
least every one will be happy forking out $25.00 for a cart,
$5.00 for a Gatoraide and $10.00 for a ham and cheese
July 2nd, 2012 - It's Toonament
Just a quick note to let everyone know that on Wed July 4th, The
WWGC working in conjunction with The Raptor will conduct a major
"toonament" for our members. It is common
practice to expand the awards to include gross skins, net skins,
closest to pins (CTP) and the 2 person blind draw.
Each group has a scorecard and rules sheet which can be picked
up in the proshop when you register. The total cost for
all games is $20.00
Here are a couple of additional observations...first...the tee
times tomorrow are stretching from 6:30AM to almost 10:00.
The first group to go out will be approached by the pro shop to
set the CTP markers at the respective putting surfaces (2, 6, 11
and 14). The CTP in two shots on a par 4 is hole 13...Note
to Ron Fretwell group, this CTP marker is designed to be stuck
in the ground at the spot on the green where the ball rests
along with the name of the current CTP. Then, through the
course of the day as each group goes through, in the event that
a player lands a shot "closer" the marker is moved to
that spot and the new name is added to the marker.
Finally, one of the last groups will take the marker and write a
funny name on it such as "Dick Fitzwell" "Whoo
Flung Poo" or "Sammy GetWellSoon" and put it
close to the hole - all in jest of course...this in commonly
referred to as "The McClain Gambit"
It should also be noted that the proshop will come out to pick
up the markers after the final member groups goes through.
Because there are so many players, The Raptor is really
stressing that each player find a way to play a nice, clean,
qick round of golf
Second, Breakfast Balls are not available on toonament day...and
in the spirit of the Rules....the toonament will be played under
strict summer rules. No divot rule this time...
A pro's table will be set up at the Asphalt Bar and Grill but
the results of all the games may not be determined until later
in the day. Rather than initiate a massive bar tab, The
Raptor is encouraging some enterprising players to donate some
Adult Beverages to the collective...If each group were to fund a
six pack that would lead to less of a drag on the pot...
C U in the morning
July 2nd, 2012 - Weekend Update...
Is Tiger Woods back? - This question was on SOME peoples minds
yesterday evening at about 6:30 as Woods was putting the
frosting on the cake with a big win at the AT&T National.
This tournament has proven to be an enigma wrapped in a riddle.
It is considered "Tiger's Tournament, in the same fashion
that The Memorial is "Jack's Tournament and The Bay Hill is
It makes you wonder if the next tier of PGA Professionals will
have a tournament....Bubba...Rickie...Webb...hmmmmmm...probably
There were some pundits who have slapped the "hollow
win" tag on this event since capable players such as Luke,
Rory and Lee didn't participate...well Rory played in the Irish
Open and finished a "respectable" 10th place, nipping
Euro star Thongchai Jaidee in the process. Unfortunately,
Luke and Lee are prepping for the British Open which is held at
another crap hole...Royal Lytham and St Annes. It should
be noted that Royal Porterush, site of the Irish Open is pining
away for a British Open bid...splendid!
The Raptor is pumped up as a result of Tiger's win and he is
hopeful that supra dick, John Hawkins, choked up his dinner as a
result. I can't believe that Hawkins and
"journalist" can be used in the same sentence.
That stooge couldn't write his way out of an Almond Joy wrapper.
The weekend also featured one of those magic moments when WWGC
member, Al Szymanski, made a hole-in-one at the WW 14th hole.
Al used a 5 iron for his approach and afterwards bought all the
gang a complimentary adult beverage in order to celebrate in
style. Congratulations Al!
Golf is sure a tricky game...on one hole you could be down in
the dumps over a mishit wedge shot or a missed short putt only
to turn it all around with one swing of the club or bounce of
Calling all Erie Golfers...our good friend Rob "Roto"
Nicotra working in conjunction with PGA Golf Professional
Michael O'Connor needs your help...Roto is doing great work as
one of the organizers of the 2nd Annual JC Martin Charity Golf
Tournament which is being held at the Martin course on Friday
July 13th. The 4 person scramble format will tee off
with a 3:30 shotgun and a "catered" affair will
follow. The highlight of this event is the five (5) hole
in one contests which feature new cars! Well worth the
$125.00 registration fee.
If you grew up in Erie, PA and played at "Glenwood"
you NEED to be supporting this event...call Jack Tufts at
864-1821. I have attached a registration package for
The Raptor is attempting to put together a foursome so anyone
interested in joining me is welcome! I know $125.00 is
an awful lot of money but this is an important initiative
which requires a sacrifice for some future generations.
June 18th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
As The Raptor writes this the gang is up yonder at The fabulous
Kahkwa Club playing out the first round of the West Penn Amatuer.
Good Luck Lads! Perhaps The Raptor will swing by later to meet
and greet the players and get a glimpse of Sean Knapp and Rick
Stimmel. Maybe an armed grenadier will roust me from the
Speaking of rousting, how funny was it when that goof ball
stepped in front of Bob Costas interviewing Webb Simpson last
night? At first I was as alarmed as Webb Simpson was but
it appeared to be in good fun...it must have been some protest
from a Gay, Animal Rights Activist Group objecting to the
elimination of the habitat of the chicken hawk or something...it
is no doubt a front for ACORN or some other left wing Obama
group. It was USGA official, Mike Davis, the bald
Executive Director who saved the day...I wonder if "BirdMan
got tazed or something?
The US Open sure was cool eh? The late evening endings
really helped fill the TV void which keeps regular guys watching
some Dance Contest or American Idol or Ancient Aliens whilst
dreaming about laying pipe on Bristol Palin or Kate Gosselin
occupied. The Raptor was conflicted though. Since
main men, Rickie Fowler, Tiger Woods and Hunter Mahan faded to
the pack, it was necessary to root for Jim Furyk only to have
him get totally flumoxed by the slow play warning on hole 15.
Job done Mr. USGA Jizz Bag...Furyk propmply duck hooked his
drive on Hole 16 into "Palmer Grove" and Webb Simpson
is that much happier as a result.
Gawd...that 18th hole sucks! No wonder that course is NFG!
The Raptor was rooting for Beau Hossler to make a good
showing...unfortunately a final round 76 was all he could
muster. He was impressive though...does he have a belly
putter? In true Tin Cup fashion he played himself out of
the Top 24 so Beau will have to qaulify all over again next
year. And how bout Lee Westwood putting that shot into a
tree...he could have been a contender.
The Raptor was equally impressed with the games of the world's
top players Consider this text sent out Friday night at
8:46..."Just got a call from Luke Donald. He is taking the
10:30 tee time tomorrow to hit it with Mr. Dumas...Mickelson,
Rory and Bubba are coming too!" This was an obvious
reference to those great players missing the cut...later at
9:02PM..."Tiger just spit! He has no respect for "The
Game!" Then at 9:14 "Phil make cut! Mr. Dumas will be
pissed!" Later in the weekend on Saturday at 9:43
"Divot in fairway...That blows!" Note: Blake
Adams went on to make birdie from the divot - still blows
The weekend also featured ANOTHER slow play incident up at WWGC...as
usual, The Raptor was at fault AGAIN...Jesus Christ Monkey
Balls! when are you guys gonna get this figured out!
It's not that tough. It's painfully obvious that NO ONE
wants to get branded with a slow play tag...look what happened
to Jim Furyk.
There is nothing more painful (and more hilarious) than watching
a guy go through a protracted pre shot routine with multiple
practice swings and waggles...only to slice the ball into the
woods...Tee the ball up...hit the ball...if its straight
great...if it ends up in tall "fescue" drop
another...if your on the green and your putting for a 7...after
already hitting 2 putts...give it up...sweep the ball off the
green and stomp over to the next tee...grab a brew and laugh
I don't mind setting up the games but once the damage is done
don't send me text messages while I am playing instructing me to
do something about it...get in your cart and find the slow group
and start swinging! You know you really what to hook
somebody! It would be really cool to see a few guys rolling
around up at the Asphalt Bar and Grill over a 4 and 1/2 hour
round! That's what makes America a great place!
June 11th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
Congratulations are in order to our 2012 winners of the
Member-Member Tournament which was held Sat at WW. THe
Gross Division was won by Don Fessler and Lou Natalie while the
Net Division was won by Rich Burgess and Mark Connoly.
Great playing! The tournament also featured a classy steak
dinner with potato salad and green bean sprouts on the side.
yum! There was also a skin game. Winners were announced at
the conclusion of the event.
The golf course has matured nicely this season and the primary
cut of rough is quite thick and robust. The USGA would be
proud and despite the best efforts of the turf care crew, the
heavy rough continues to grow and this may have contributed to
the "incident" which occcurred on Sunday. The
Raptor is taking full responsibility for the circumstance and it
goes something like this....please note...no names were changed
in the publication of this story.
During the Saturday post tournament celebrations, The Raptor was
approached by Denny Wildauer, Vince Timpano, Bob Herbstritt and
Lew McClain,Sr. to organize a super foursome in order to allow
the conducting of round 1 of the WW Match Play Tournament.
The Raptor did not see any thing wrong with this plan and even
created another super foursome including Tony Pepicello, Will
Georger, Joh Torok and The Raptor to conduct another round 1
match. It all seemed so innocent at the time and as has
been past practice I had Timpano and Wildauer slotted in their
traditional time as "Group 5" of the 9 scheduled
groups on The Roster. So , I moved McClain, Sr and
Herbstitt to the Group 5 and in doing so created quite a bit of
What transpired is that the 2 matches in Group 5 were fierce and
did not get decided until almost the end of the 18 hole
alottment...as a matter of fact, the Timpano/McClain match went
to the 19th hole. The players made every attemt to keep up
the pace but due to the heavy rough, slick putting surfaces and
a few errant shots the time spent on the golf course was alomost
5 hours. This caused Lou Stack to head home after 12 holes
and made for some hard feelings up yonder at the Asphalt Bar and
Grill after the match...even the attempt by The Raptor to put
some cold adult beverages on the table didn't seem to assuage
the sheer rage which was evident.
The normally mild mannered Jim Pepicello was especially upset
and he let The Raptor know about it in no uncertain terms.
Thad Z was also extremely agitated and he didn't sugarcoat his
displeasure. Out of the corner of my eye I could sense
that the Burgess/Havey group was none too pleased and was
perhaps planning to drop a "mickey finn" into my
lemonaide from therir pharmachopia colloection...The Raptor
feels responsible. I should have known better than to
conduct match play during the morning routine and it would be my
recommendation for matches to be conducted at off hours during
the weekend...or perhaps on Monday mornings when the publics
come out and u cvould piss off a few seniors who are playing for
$29.00...or on Friday afternoon when it takes 5 hours to play
As an alternative here are a few tried and true statements which
can be used in future matches...."hey Don...that 1 foot
putt is good"...'hey Damian...I have decided not to try and
hit my 11th shot on this par 5 through this tree and over this
sand bunker which if it goes in and you 4 putt, I could tie the
hole"...."hey Rob...I know I have hit my first two
drives OB and you are on the green in two shots but if I keep
playing I could piss you off and win the next hole when you have
Ladies and Gents...keep it real. figure out how to get
around the golf course as quickly as possible in no more that 4
hours and lets all be friends...geeezzzzzeeee!
June 4th, 2012 - Respmse From Rick
fact while all of the old driving ranges are gone, there is a
nice, new public driving range that has opened in the past few
years. I actually have a key with several dollars still left
on it. Or are you thinking the WWGC range is somehow
is not dead, it is just changing. WWGC is doing so well in
fact, that Rich Rocky has leased it in order to become the next
wealthy tycoon in Erie…or at least keep feeding his family and
his hunting habit.
for the higher end joints, they are struggling, but I think that
is based on a combination of the economy and less young adults
playing the game in a semi-serious way. Remember how the
seniors used to want crap at LVCC that the rest of us younger
members didn’t? Well now we are the seniors who want
things…4 country clubs to choose from instead of just 2, which
are priced low enough for a fixed retirement income. Guess
what? Those young adults hooked on spending their cash on
houses and Beemers, and hooked on spending their time on boats or
playing video games…they could care less if John and Rick have a
nice, affordable place to play golf.
the economy is something business and government need to
collaborate on. The financial issues we have now are
world-wide, so it is tough to point the finger at any specific
groups. But stimulating young players to learn golf and
embrace it as a LIFE-LONG activity…that is something that needed
to be done at a local level by Junior Golf (sort of like Erie’s
“First Tee” chapter?)! Based on the evidence, I’d say
we did a pretty crappy job at that over the past 20 years.
It seems like we have youngsters playing the game and some at an
amazingly high level, but most of them drop it after their school
days are over. I’m not sure why that is, but I’d have to
say us adults in Erie bear a lot of the responsibility for that.
made it too much like a job for them. We didn’t make it
attractive for them to join nice clubs after college to keep them
engaged in the game and the social atmosphere of the clubs.
come you and I joined Lake View during or after college and
enjoyed hanging out at the club, playing golf with our friends,
but also interacting with the “older” guys at the club…Don
Geisler, Drew Greaver, BenThorndill , Vinnie Bucci, Arty Jessup,
etc. Why isn’t that “fun” for the younger guys of
today when they leave college? Maybe some of us are just not
very welcoming. Maybe we are no fun!!
are your thoughts?
June 4th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
Looking back on another weekend up yonder at The Woods gives The
Raptor time to reflect on a what a great county we live in -
consider the story of one WW Member who happened to be in
Columbus several years ago for a wedding and drove over to
Muirfield Village to catch some of the tournament in the Sat
afternoon between wedding and reception. Due to
circumstances the tickets for that day were sold out but the
ticket master turned our friend onto a corporate sponsor who
invited our friend and his spouse back the next day and provide
full access to the corporate tent, the grounds and the
Speaking of awesome...how about Tiger Woods putting on yet
another clinic and in the process giving Spencer Levin and Rory
Sabbatini a can or whoop-ass...
Every body knows the story by now but The Raptor was so
pumped at 6:00PM last night that The Raptor was forced to drive
over to WWGC to try for some dramatics of my own...The Raptor
was planning on playing the par 3's and upon driving out to hole
#2, I discovered Jim Pie and we proceeded to the tee box.
I hit a decent shot and actually hit the cup with my 20 foot
birdie attempt. But no other dramatics occurred on the
front nine. I bid Pie farewell and traveled to hole #11.
The wind was up and the distance from the white tee was about
155 yards. I had played the 5 iron earlier in the day and
left the approach a tad short so I opted for the 4 iron and hit
a perfect approach which hit the putting surface about 30 feet
below the flagastick and rolled so close...
It is a great feeling to execute the well struck iron shot.
The Raptor's main guy, Rickie Fowler did not compete Sunday...er...I
have been told that in fact Fowler did compete but shot an 84.
So it looks like in addition to McIlroy, we can offer Fowler a
spot on the roster...I wonder if we could slot him with Thad
Z....look out Rickie!
Finally, The Raptor has been wondering about the state of the
golf industry and was particularly wondering if anyone else is
wondering. Do you realize that at one time there were
several heavily used driving ranges in the Erie area and it's
possible that they are all closed...Mid-City on 12th...Sportland
on Asbury...Nick's Place in Edinboro...the range up by
Crowley's in Cranesville...The Golf Dome?...Big T's on upper
Peach all gone...I think.
Also, The Raptor was reminiscing about The Tracydale Range
down on 6th Street near what is now Tracy Elementary and
remembers the double Decker range which seemed to always busy
back in the 60's and early 70's. And, I found a news
article about the Tracydale Pitch and Putt Course from 1952
and Brian McGrath has confirmed that there was a small golf
course on the south side of 6th street across from the range
back in the 50's. How bout the awesome Putt-Putt
facility at the West Erie Plaza? - that was cool! if anyone
would like to contribute to this dialog feel free to ping
There are no ranges left folks so...does that mean there will
be no golf courses? If the people of Erie keep looking
for buddy packages I am afraid that will be the
case...sad...so sad. Have you seen the pervasive
commercials from Dicks Sporting Goods and Golf Galaxy?
That will be your next way station gang...simulated golf
participating in long drive contests into a screen...good luck
with that! Drive by the recently closed nine hole course
near the airport on the "new" Powell Ave. the
previously recognizable holes are almost gone...can your
course or club be far behind?
The Raptor aka "Buzz Killington"
May 29th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
I suppose we can all look back at this past weekend of golf
activities at WW and state that "it was the best of times
and the best of times". If you came off the weekend
in a sour mood...shame on you. Not only did the players
see a golf course in good shape, there was also plenty of
"action" to go around.
Saturday, the "Need For Speed" Toonament was conducted
and it featured a slew of games including the Closest To Pins
and The Two-Man Blind Draw. The awards have been complied
and PGA Professional, Richard Rocky did a stand up job putting
together a toonament score board to acknowledge the winners.
In skins action, I believe Lucas Marsh was a big winner and in
the Blind Draw the team of Alan Hosford and Mark Zalewski picked
up an award. The awards can be picked up at the pro
shop...due to circumstances beyond my control, The Raptor has
been unable to prepare a report for the Toonament as I have been
busy with other important matters.
On Sunday, a strong field of over 20 players participated in a
combination Pro Shop Merchandise Game and a $$$ game and the big
winners were the man/significant other duo of Mike Chessario and
Tanica Bell. The Chessario/Bell consortium has just joined
the member roster and Tanica earned here award on hole number 2
with a birdie which included a 25 foot putt...it should be noted
that she played from the gold tees...meanwhile Mike pissed and
moaned his way around the golf course for 17 holes and then made
a dramatic bird on hole 18 to cash in...gawd, that hole is one
of the hardest in Erie County and yet folks figure out a way to
Memorial Day proved to be just as exciting as the previous days
and a strong field of over 35 players participated in the Annual
Flag Tournament and...a $$$ skin game.
The Flag Day winners were:
Vince Timpano - 1st
Denny Wildauer - 2nd
Joe Puglese - 3rd
Tony Pepicello - 4th
The Raptor - 5th
Meanwhile the skin game winners were:
These awards can be picked up in the pro shop.
Special props going out to Mark Zalewski who has jumped in with
both feet this season and is a strong supporter of WW events -
congratulations Mark on a job...done...
May 24th, 2012 - It's Toonament
The Raptor is a little stressed out as the Memorial Day Weekend
approacheth. For starters, it's supposed to be 90+ degrees
on Sunday at the 500 and Jim Nabors may have a sun stroke and
keel over when he sings "Back Home Again In
Indiana"...second, the whole issue of "slow play"
has been on the lips of players worldwide in light of the Kevin
Na and Morgal Pressel performances and The Raptor gets saddened
when other folks get stressed out about slow play - can't we
just drop a ball under no penalty and get along? If the
WWGC turf care crew wants to keep the rough at US Open
length...it seems acceptable to be able to look for about 10
seconds and then drop a ball with no penalty...
It was just last Sat and Sun that The Raptor performed
"perfect" lay ups on hole #1 only to find the ball so
totally buried in grass 1 foot from the fairway as to not be
able to extracate a 80 wedge shot to the putting surface!
As mentioned previously, The Raptor will work in conjunction
with the WWGC proshop to conduct three differing "toonaments"
this weekend. On Sat there will be an ala carte Raptor
event featuring the Gross and Net Skins, plus two-man blind draw
and the closest to the pins. Each game will have a $5.00 entry.
Sign up will be in the pro shop and this toonament is open from
any morning group from the early birds (Lauer, Scully, Weber)
all the way through to the mid morning groups such as the Harvey
Group. The Raptor strongly recommends that each and every
one who is considering playing on Sat to just bring an extra
$20.00 (aka "Jackson") so that the prize pool will
have the maximum amount available. Plus The Raptor will
work with PGA Golf Professional, Richard Rocky to set up a pro's
table under the tent (Asphalt Bar & Grill) and we will
encourage some consumption of cold adult beverages along with
heaping bowls of pretzels.
The "nexus" for this event will be the Blue
tees...Therefore those individuals playing from the whites will
see a 2 point deduct on their handicap for the net skin and
blind draw. If you want to really work the system, you could
play the black tees and get two additional handicap points.
Also, new in 2012...if you are playing from a forward, forward
tee such as the gold or red...to get in the games you will have
to play the par 3 holes from the white tees.
I know this will be burdensome at the start but you have to
trust The Raptor here...The Raptor has performed
"extensive" scoring research and let's face it...
the par 3's from the forward tees are really, really
short...even hole 6 is only about 140 yards.
On Sunday a traditional skin game will be conducted $5.00 gross
and $5.00 net. Awards will be cash. On Memorial Day the Flag
Tournament will occur. This has proven to be an
interesting and fun event - The Raptor has never gotten one of
those MF flags to the freakin 18th green! Jesus Christ Monkey
Balls! Maybe this year will be different.
Finally, I want to reiterate that the season has a long road
ahead and in the event that you are in any way pissed off about
something don't reach out...just hold it in and get really,
really mad and petty and don't try to smooth out the
differences...this is America and the reason it is a great place
is due to compromise. Please take that into consideration
and ignore my clumsy attempt at sarcasm - please lets work on
our issues and make WW a great place.
May 21st, 2012 - Weekend Update...
It's another fabulous Erie day with bright sunshine and moderate
temps. The Raptor would like to be setting up a match for after
work but issues with my ailing left foot will keep me grounded
for the next few days. Hope to be back for the weekend
Speaking of the weekend, the past one was another example of the
special diversity which envelopes the golf community this time
of year. For starters there was an "incident" at the LPGA event
aka The Sybase Match Play Championship. According to news
reports, Morgan Pressel was playing Alezandria Munoz in a
semifinal match and was put on the clock on the 9th hole.
Pressel reached the 12th tee with a 3 up lead...only to be told
that she lost the 12th hole due to taking too much time playing
the par three. maybe 39 seconds too long. Pressel immediately
collapsed like a house of cards and eventually lost the match
and her dignity when the TV coverage elected to show her post
round sob routine. Unfortunately, The Raptor missed the whole
thing as I consider LPGA golf unwatchable...especially when Ai
Myiazatto wears those knee socks...eeeewwwweee!
Should Pressel have been penalized? Probably not...but the LPGA
has certainly set a precedent and made their brand that much
more conflicted. They have vwery few televised events and they
are always shown tape delay on The Golf Channel. I do not know
any one who could compose themselves after being humiliated by
some goofy bastard in a Skipper Cap who is walking the course
with a stop watch and a hand held walkie talkie...
"Breaker, Breaker...this is Joe Rules Official for Mike Whan"...."ya
go ahead, this is Whan"..."Pressell etc.etc.etc."..."ok dock her
a hole, that's the ugliest outfit I have ever seen!"
As every one knows by now, slow play is about to or has already
ruined golf...they have been saying that for 500 years! and so
what? Everyone knows a turtle...there is nothing to do but live
with it, or perhaps humiliate the slow player like the LPGA
did. What blows The Raptor away is that Pressel and Munoz are
"close friends" (what ever THAT means) and they were not going
to let this incident hurt that relationship. Right...
On the PGA tour, Jason Dufner won another event which may have
been watched live by six people. Gawd, Dufner is about as
exciting as a Chinese Finger Torture. He makes my head hurt!.
Jonas Blixt?...J. J. Henry?...Dicky Pride?...Ken Duke? and how
bout Phil Mickelson? he manages to get in the hunt only to go
bogey bogey on the last two holes, talk about a balloon
bursting, but at least he showed up...
Speaking of showing up, this past weekend saw the EDGA Interclub
event at Downing Golf Club and The Raptor is here to
congratulate LVCC on a solid victory. LV was led by Ellery
Tarbell who fashioned a smooth 69 at the always lovely Troupe
Road track. According to several players the course was in
great shape and the playing length of over 7,000 yards was a
refreshing test of golf. There were several clubs associated
with the EDGA who elected to not field a team, including Kahkwa,
Lake Shore, Elk Valley, Riverside, Meadville, Corry, and
Overlake. I know... I know... why play if you can't win? What a
shame!. These tournaments are supposed to be conducted in order
to benefit the Junior Golf Programs which could potentially
foster additional players to promote the game...while there is a
lengthy list of reasons not to play, at least there is one
reason to play.
The EDGA has always been a steward of the local golf scene and
The Raptor is sensing that there will come a time when these
events and the clubs associated with the events will be an
anachronism. As the player base continues to shrink there will
be less and less enthusiasm and all the hard work which was
accomplished over the past years will be a great memory which we
can read about on the EDGA website.
Perhaps to drive home the final nail, the EDGA could tie
Interclub participation with the other championships and in the
event member clubs fail to field a team, the individual players
would be restricted from playing in the major events like the
Match Play, and Amateur. Wouldn't that be awful?
Finally, as promised, The Raptor would like to relate a Baptism
anecdote provided by Tom Bean and Ellery Tarbell regarding our
good friend, Rick Carlotti, aka "Munster". It seems Munster was
playing up yonder at LVCC on Saturday and when approaching the
10th green, he elected to allow his golf bag trolley to "run
free" down the hill. To his shock, the trolley made a sudden
right turn and tumbled into the pond at the base of the hill and
in the process dumped his bag and clubs into the pond!
|LVCC Member, Rick
Carlotti...Wading Into Hole #10 Collection
Pond...Retrieving His Bag And Clubs...(Photo Courtesy Of
As can be seen from the photo, Rick had to remove his socks and
shoes to wade into the pond to get the bag and clubs....this is
hilarious! Perhaps Munster should have taken of the slacks too
like Ian Baker Finch did at a tournament years ago to give us a
little thrill (or a butt crack). This has to trump every other
golf story to come out of the weekend...thanks Rick...you are
May 9th, 2012 - The Raptor Bump...
Lost in yesterday's weekend update was the stirring victory at
The Wells Fargo by The Raptor's man...Rickie Fowler. Fowler
broke onto the PGA Tour in 2010 and immediately made an impact
with a spot on that season's Ryder Cup Team. He has a unique
personality and has grasped the importance of a marketing
strategy which appeals to the younger generation while leaving
many of the the geezers at a loss for words.
At last years Masters Toonament, Fowler pranced into the media
room after a practice round with his signature PUMA cap
only to chastised by token member Ron Townsend (Member Director
of Media Room) to turn it to the "proper" position. Fowler
protested for a scant few seconds but recanted when it appeared
that Pinkerton's guards were preparing to extricate him from the
Since then, Fowler has exhibited a penchant for hot and cold
play and continually seemed to shoot himself in the foot when he
moved onto the first page of the leader board. During his
tenure he has parlayed his colorful on course attire into a
lucrative contract with Puma and the Raptor has been endorsing
him...in order to show support, I donned a orange shirt and
pulled out my 2012 PUMA Cap on Sunday to give Rickie a Raptor
Bump which took him to the top...and as many of you know, The
Raptor Bump has been a very effective method to achieve success
over the past several years...
Resemblace To Rickie...It's Eeerie!
May 8th, 2012 - Weekend Update...
And What A Wild
Weekend It Was...
The big news from this weekend past was the screening of the
Marvel Comics Flick "The Avengers". The film features
Superheros like Iron Man, Hawkeye, Nick Fury, Captain America,
Thor, The Incredible Hulk and Super sexy Scarlet Johansson plays
The Black Widow. The film opened to stunning box office results
with over $200 million dollars in receipts for a weekend. The
Raptor may check this film out as soon as this weekend.
Primarily to see the Hulk say something like..."Hulk Will
Sat brought out the always interesting Kentucky Derby - 2
minutes precluded by 17 hours of analysis, interviews and
general bullcrap - I tried watching the race whist I was dining
at Applebees. It was....interesting... Earlier in the day The
Raptor had matched up with Nat Burnside and we chatted about
pre-race consumption...Nat was nice enough to send me a pic of
his refrigerator which showcased some Stella perfectly
positioned for the event...only a stud like Nat would keep a pic
of his fridge on his phone - Nice!
Sunday, a mini "toonament" was conducted which was a success.
The conditions of the course were interesting...the greens were
top notch whilst the fairways were a tad shaggy. Perhaps
inclement weather had restricted mowing during the week...the
irony was that the well struck drive resulted in great ball
position for approach shots as the ball was sitting up on the
grass like an ice cream cone. After several weeks of weather
issue it was nice to not be subjected to any frost delay for a
Special thanks go out to the pro shop for helping The Raptor
with the scoring and the determination of the awards and special
congratulations go out to Pete Zenwicz who scored a dramatic
bird on hole number 10 and was named the "big winner"
The funniest story goes to Mark Zalewski who picked up a nice
skin on hole number 11 with a net one...the fact that Mark is
getting a stroke on every hole and then some even though he
actually plays every day (and twice on Sunday) is a testament to
his work ethic on the golf course. during the course of Sat
afternoon The Raptor was monitoring the scoring results in order
to send out a text message on the winners. The Pro Shop was
waiting for a scorecard from the Scully/Puglese group and The
Raptor decided to send out the close to pin awards first.
So in the message The Raptor said "CTP report" (short for close
to pin) and to end the message "skin report to be determined
later". Not two minutes go by and Mark Z sends The Raptor a
text that says "You mean a net 1 on 11 did not hold up? (tears
no doubt falling). So The Raptor had to respond with a
disclaimer (Jesus Christ Monkey Balls!) to which Mark Z said he
was sorry as he had read my original message quick...he was
playing at Kahkwa...sniff...cough... that is funny!
The Raptor is here to report that in excess of 15 teams and
perhaps as many as 18 teams will play in Saturdays WWGC Season
Opening Scramble...this is a reasonably decent turnout which
should go a long ways towards the construction of the
clubhouse! The Raptor is also reminding any one who is looking
for a free meal and considers themselves a "member" to show up
at Calamari's on Monday to hear the encouraging words of our
C U Saturday - The Raptor
May 1st, 2012 - Weekend Update...
It is to laugh. After what could be considered the finest start
to any golf season in the last 25 years, The Raptor has been
reduced to a shell of his former self...the foot infection which
I developed two weekends ago is starting to fade away and the
two wounds, Obama and Romney are healing ever so slightly. The
Raptor ventured out onto the grounds of WWGC somewhat
tentatively on this past Sunday and played some of the "easier"
holes and was gratified to have the chance.
Unfortunately, paranoia is a constant friend and The Raptor was
half expecting the brief visit to have dastardly effect. But,
with that being said...it was sure nice to whack a Rockitbalz on
hole number 6 to within about 15 feet and as usual by not
attempting all the putts, The Raptor was able to venture to the
Pro's Table with dignity.
This past weekend included some lengthy frost delay and this
threw all the logistics into a tizzy. This dog eat dog world
has made it very difficult if not impossible to live the
ultimate dream...what is the ultimate dream? Well for The Raptor
it is to arrive at the golf course quite early and stay quite
late...and all the while shirking any and all responsibilities
to exist in a real world of lawn care, car washing, garage
cleaning, window washing, kiddie sporting events and general
brooding while spouse's MF you for getting home 17 minutes past
curfew and then they go to the spa for a workout with their
"masseuse"...after which they come home and award you with "the
Since The Raptor was Golf Challenged on Sat, The Raptor went
insead to work (I just threw up in my mouth), and got a lunch
date with Dad as a result. While enjoying a fine Cheeseburger at
the Maennerchor, The Raptor bumped into a LVCC member who made
some small talk about my Frankenstein Like Walking Boot and
asked how things were going up at WWGC.
This must be some sort of similar situation when two bucks
encounter each other in the woods and proceed to stamp hooves
and butt antlers. So, dumbly, The Raptor said "Whispering Woods
is nice...it's in the best shape I have seen it for this time of
year since it opened"... "Oh really"...LVCC member said..."I
talked to a guy who played there a couple of weeks ago and he
said it's in terrible shape"... well...gee I guess he told
me...but it left me kind of depressed. It's as if The Raptor is
getting punished for having the temerity to even play at WWGC.
The Raptor let it go though since I knew better. I don't think
the guy had ever even played at WW. I might be blinded by the
fact that I go there every day but whenever I do it is an
enjoyable experience which is elevated by the folks who happen
to be around. so thanks for that.
As a matter of fact, just yesterday The Raptor worked with
daughter, Andrea to bring the Mercyhurst College Womens Golf
Team up to The Woods and no one seemed to complain about the
condition of the course. But interestingly enough, the evening
dinner discussion with the players and a coach turned once again
to the lack of a clubhouse. This theme comes up again and again
and it sure is a hot button issue. I am strating to believe
that WWGC should not build a clubhouse just to stick it in the
craw of everyone who wants a clubhouse.
I mean what is the big deal? who among us joins a golf club to
use the clubhouse? It's the golf course that draws the
interest. How bout a compromise here. The past few weeks I have
seen hardly anyone in our existing clubhouse...what? if there
was a building overlooking the golf course would folks suddenly
start sitting around there sucking up bottomless cokes
and squeezing mustard out of the small packages in liew of the
I will tell you what a good barometer would be...there is a club
event coming up on May 12th. I will bet you that it will not be
supported by at least half of the 50 to 60 players who frequent
the course on Sat and Sun morning. Can u believe that just
because there is some food involved (clubhouse) that it would
preclude someone from opening up the communion fund to remove a
couple of $20's? I will support it though and I can't even
play! We shall see.
April 19th, 2012 - The LVCC Practice
The Raptor found himself out at Lake View CC (LVCC) last August
22, for the annual CPA Golf Tournament (won by Dave Hewett, with
The Raptor finishing a distant 5th due to diminished skills) and
while prepping for the shotgun start snapped a picture of the
nearly finished "Practice Facility" which occupies the spot
which was at one time the Driving Range. Normally The Raptor
would embed the photo but AOL is being a little testy today. So
you will have to imagine the beauty...
This new facility is a wonderful addition to an already awesome
golf club and it is sure to create a buzz when it officially
opens, later this year.
It had dawned on The Raptor while lunching with long time golf
pal, Tom Bean that this facility and it's four "practice greens"
(Is there four?), need some names. This is for several reasons
but most importantly to create some long term recognition for
the valiant members who shouldered the responsibility of making
Lake View great.
Go back with The Raptor to the early 1980's when the Practice
Facility was still a driving range for some background. For
those of you who can remember, the range was in that location
perhaps to the middle 1990's but in 1983 it was of constant
concern over the periodic missiles which flew off the less
accurate woods of the day and placed many a car out on Route 89
in peril. There are no doubt countless stories of little old
ladies and big skinhead biker types who were beneficiaries of a
cracked winshield courtesy of a wicked hook (or slice if hit by
Mike Capotis) delivered by one of Lake View's finest. Then
there are other stories of unfortunate SOB's who took a shot to
the nogin while waiting on the 8th tee...The Raptor liked
equating the 8th as "The Killing Field". There are still other
stories of the shots which smashed into the old half way house.
There were only a few "big hitters" who could pull off the half
way house...there are probably a few anecdotes of some
unfortunate wedding party attempting to get a group shot at the
gazebo that got peppered by someone (more than likely on
The Raptor recalls vividly the lament of past Board Member Bob
Munson (who was also an insurance agent) talking about this
subject at annual meeting(s). One member (name unknown)
suggested putting up a sign at the range which would somehow
indemnify the club from liability and Bob said "you can't sign
away your liability"...rim shot please...
Anyhow, the LVCC membership and Board breathed a sigh of relief
when the new range was constructed...for the most part.
Naturally there were some who complained about THAT range
putting players on hole #10 in peril...it's a Catch 22.
Now fast forward to the present. Not only do the practice
facility holes need names but the facility itself needs a name
so why not call it "The Robert Munson Memorial Practice
Facility" or The Munson for short. Then, the holes could be
named for legenday members like Weinheimer, Spicher, "Mad Dog"
and Krull. Conversely, instead of members, the names could be
comprised of LVCC Head Professionals such as Wargo, Kaye, Clover
and Crane....well....let's skip that idea. But, it is most
important to note that a special meeting of the bylaws committee
should be called to make sure not to name any of the
I guess I like to bring back Bob Munson on this story as it is a
foregone conclusion that golf balls are once again going to end
up out on Route 89. Tom suggested that a shot of 125 to 150
yards is possible by going from the area close to the green by
hole 18 all the way to the hole that is close to the edge of the
driving range near 89. So, in a future scenario, you could have
say....Rick Carlotti standing by at Spicher while Dave Hewett is
plying his game up yonder at Mad Dog and Rick decides he has had
enough of Dave's birdie barrages so he decides to send out a
little "chin music" but inadvertently "bellies" an eight iron
which rockets out onto 89, where it caroms off of Ellery
Tarbells new Ferrari Dino....Ellery, startled by the
encroachment veers out of control and plows into the house over
the hill and takes out that guys kitchen...hhhhhhmmmmm....this
could get interesting!
April 10th, 2012 - Masters Update...
As I write this I am scanning my predictions on The Masters and
I have determined that I gave Bubba Watson a 40% chance of
winning The Masters Toonament last weekend. It is compelling to
note that The Raptor gave Louis Oosthuizen a 10% chance.
Interestingly enough, The individuals with the greatest chance
of winning such as Donald, McIlroy, Westrwood, Dustin Johnson,
Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods and Zack Johnson were for the most
part non factors in this years event.
Mickelson certainly showed The Raptor a thing or two as did
Freddy Couples. The Raptor also had Lee Westwood on his list of
potential winners and Lee did not disappoint. He played to an
eventual tie for 3rd place with the previously mentioned
Mickelson along with Matt Kuchar and Peter Hansen. Westwood
seemed to be battling with a balky putter and his Friday and
Saturday scores were 73 and 72 respectively.
Augusta National was in fine shape and Bubba is a strong
Here is Bubba receiving congratulations from Augusta National
Chairman, Billy Payne after donning "The Green Jacket". It's
the coolest thing that can happen to a player of this game.
In other news, the annual Masters Party held at Skeeters on
Friday, April 6th, was a decent turnout and The Raptor had a
great time catching up with the gang. Thanks to all of you who
stopped by! and thanks to Skeeter for hosting the event...
Finally, The Raptor has been alerted that an imposter "The
Raptor" has been in the news today. The Raptor would like to
state publicly that he is NOT "The Raptor" who is taking down
Al-Qaeda chat rooms...you can see my official reaction at
April 2nd, 2012 - Weekend Update...
Many of you may recall that way back in about the end of
January, The Raptor sent out an email/text message of
encouragement telling everyone to get ready for Saturday March
31st in order to christen a new golf season up yonder at WWGC.
Well, as it turned out the season opened a month ago and
Saturday's weather was perhaps the worst "golf weather" The
Raptor has played in!
With temperatures hovering in the mid 30's and a wind chill of
about 28 degrees there were few hearty souls capable of putting
in an 18 hole test. However, that didn't stop The Raptor and
his playing partners Lou, Jason and Pat for completing the
round. Congratulations go out to some real men.
Sunday, the weather was "better" but it still was a tad cold and
there were some showers in the area. Logistics were confounded
by a marginal 2 hour frost delay but it didn't stop certain
players from executing a "case study" The golf was suspect as a
result but the yucks were excellent!
Our thoughts now turn to the upcoming Masters Golf Toonament and
as usual The Raptor is sponsoring a party at Skeeters Clubhouse
on Friday April 6th starting at 4PM....yes...I know that that is
Good Friday but it should be noted that according to the dogma,
the main event ended at about 3PM Jerusalem time when some
thunder and lightning occurred and a great curtain was torn in
the Temple. So perhaps for those who need to get in a little
worship, you can head to the church from 12 noon to 3 and then
stop by Skeeters. It is apparent that The Toonament Organizers
pay no attention to matters of faith or they wouldn't schedule
the event on Easter weekend....geeeezzzzeee...but consider
this...Jim Nantz will be in rare form come Sunday as he voices
his solemn intonations about the "Cathedral In The Pines"
Weather will also be a factor as the temps will be crawling into
the 50's Friday with some bright sunshine...this could diminish
the turnout at Skeeters as players try to get in some golf at
their favorite club!...oh well!
In order to get some additional perspective, The Raptor cobbled
together some mish mash at
. This weeks piece is on why I do not
consider The Masters a major tournament win. Enjoy! and hope to
see you at Skeeters!
March 23rd, 2012 - I Would If I Could...
As The Raptor was picking up this mornings paper as 6:50AM I was
struck by the memory of the classic Rogers and Hammerstein
Musical "Oklahoma". The stage play was produced in 1943 and 12
years later the film was released starring Gordon McCrae and
Shirley Jones. The opening scene features McCrae belting out
his rendition of "Oh What A Beautiful Morning"
Yes...The Raptor felt like singing this morning. It was
perfect...sun was rising in the East...little or no
breeze...temp at 50 degrees...a perfect Beautiful Morning. And
it would have been that much better if The Raptor could have
made the drive to WWGC rather than "work". Let's face it...If I
could golf every day, I would. Whispering Woods is such a
Now that the fairways and sand bunkers are groomed and the
putting surfaces have been cut the facility is almost perfect.
Oh, don't get me wrong I am sure that the malcontents out there
have a lengthy list of grey areas to grouse about. but let's
face it...to be having this kind of conditioning on the first
day of Spring as opposed to Memorial Day is
unprecedented. Naturally there will be other maintenance
procedures and if the weather continues to improve this could
shape up to be the kind of season that you looked back on and
concluded that it was a good move to have joined WWGC to play
golf this year.
Not only is the golf course in great shape but the animal life
is thriving too. The facility has turkey, deer and geese
The turkey have not been too visible this season but they may be
close by. Once they show up though, it is great to see them
stroll the grounds as if they know exactly what we are doing out
there. I know in his heart, PGA Pro Richard Rocky would like to
keep a gun in his golf bag and shoot those poor SOB's into
oblivion...perhaps its a good thing that he can't
Recently, while carting to the 18th tee, The Raptor encountered
a group of deer...chilling on the grass land near the 16th tee.
Just like the turkey...the gave a cursory glance to make sure
we were golfers and not hunters and casually walked towards
The Raptor's Ravine for a cold drink.
Then there is the story of the geese. These creatures are so
misunderstood. They are ubiquitous to the region and seem
harmless but who amongst us does not despise their very
They certainly are unique as they waddle around...male and
female protecting their spawn...a spawn that will
programmatically return here some day to extend the great
circle of life and make Whispering Woods the great place it
Yes...it is a beautiful morning
March 21st, 2012 - The Circus Is In
The Raptor had a chance to go up to WWGC yesterday and was
pleased to discover that the Awning Shop had "erected" the
multi-purpose Circus Tent, Cart Barn, Snackatorium and sectional
Asphalt Bar and Grill.
One of my playing partners made the observation that the tent
really looks cool as it is polished to a high luster and makes
the joint look alive. Spring has sprung!....Summer is here and
talk is turning once again to thoughts of how to convert the
venerable double wide trailer and tent into a permanent
clubhouse which fits the environment but provides a facility
where disgruntled users can suck down bottomless diet pop and
munch on delicious tossed salads all the while attempting to get
to a zero-sum membership.
If you converse with anyone who spends a lot of time at WWGC,
they are DESPERATE for a clubhouse. While there is no
preconceived notion as to how the clubhouse should look it would
have to have any and all traditional amenities which are
available at other golf clubs in the area. At minimum these
include: ProShop, Club Storage Room, Cart Storage, Men's and
Women's Locker Room with Shower Facility and Sauna, Dining Room,
Grill Room, Comprehensive Kitchen, Patio(s), Picnic Pavilion,
Office space for management etc.
How to solve this riddle is a serious problem...on one hand if
the facility is built with all the amenities listed, the cost
could be so onerous as to bankrupt the operation into oblivion.
Perhaps a subtle approach is called for...start with a couple of
the amenities and add on as interest grows. That certainly
doesn't help any one who is alive today. It could be years
before any meaningful clubhouse is finished.
Are there options...probably but unfortunately it seems that in
order to pull this off a "Spartan" approach would have to be
utilized. What would Spartan entail? here goes...
For starters, the primary reason to build a clubhouse is for
bragging rights. If a building were to be constructed that met
the expectations of the present gentry, these users could
exhibit a pride which could be used to dump on other facilities
in the region...and that's the rub right? If you WERE at a club
like LVCC or Lake Shore you want to have SOMETHING to hang your
hat on besides a double wide and a circus tent...otherwise you
could have stayed at the other joint!
So, if the double wide approach is utilized and a unit is
perched up on the knob overlooking hole #18, there would exude a
certain level of disappointment as the existing users would feel
uncompelled to utilize it. It's not that the bottomless drinks
would be warmer or the delicious tossed salads would be
wilted...it just would not be cool. After all, a user who is
also trying to obtain zero-sum membership could just as easily
pack a couple of beverages and some foodstuffs in their trunk.
This is also known as "The Burnside Gambit"
So, in compromise, The Raptor proposes the following...keep the
present Double Wide and make sure to put a nice sign on it that
specifically refers to it as a "Clubhouse". Convert the Tent to
a permanent "Multipurpose Pavilion" - for a model of this visit
Riverside Golf Club...then to placate a few frequent users build
another smaller Multipurpose Pavilion up on the knob overlooking
Instead of dumping a lot of cash into a building no one will
use, put the money into the golf course. And as far as the
residents of the sub division go - avoid the attempt to drag
them onto the grounds for sandwiches and drinks...it would be
just awful to see a bunch of young kids drinking out of sippie
cups and eating chicken fingers while I was trying to conduct a
meeting at the Pro's Table.
March 19th, 2012 - Ostraka...
The Raptor has to laugh....maybe even LOL or ROFLOL. I know now
that these messages are contrary to a normal state of well
being. But there is a solution...ancient Greece was know for a
number of accomplishments such as the Parthenon, Triremes and
humping little boys. In addition, the Greeks had a method for
dealing with malcontents which was known as "Ostraka" or
Ostracism in American.
The Greeks determined as long ago as about 600 BC that certain
individuals were so problematic that the only way to rid
themselves of trolls was to vote them out of the community for
10 years by handing the poor SOB a Ostraka stone. Once message
was received the recipient had to gather his things, hang head
low and shuffle off to the county side or perhaps Sparta. But,
on the bright side, the ostracized individual could return in 10
years. Interesting enough...one of Ancient Greece's greatest
hero's...Themostocilies...was ostracized after he led Greece to
a huge military victories over Darius of Persia in a battle at
Marathon and Salamis in about 490 to 480 BC.
So, if need be...the group could very well vote The Raptor the
same fate. After all, there has to be someone out there who can
lead this crew...in the meantime, I just thought up some more
reasons for ending up playing in Mr. Dumas's
group...please...when you get a chance to get in a game with The
Raptor...use some common sense. Avoid making statements which
as sure to piss The Raptor off...in your mind these could be
innocent probing questions designed to expand your knowledge of
the universe but as far as The Raptor is concerned they are just
loosely crafted pre-conscious thoughts that should be suppressed
rather than uttered.
This technique was first utilized by GOP icon Ronald Reagan and
lead to certain dumb statements such as "trees cause pollution"
or "ketchup is a vegetable". So to sum up...here are a few
softballs which could go a long ways towards a
re-invite..."hello" "nice shot" "sit" "good bye" but...if you
decide to say something like "it's hard to believe you can hit
it that far with that half swing" or "do you think you can get
there with that 5 wood" The Raptor may freak out....next
March 19th, 2012 - Only The Strong
Wow! What a weekend! While The Raptor was saddened and
disappointed that A Cart Path Rule was in effect, The Raptor
still managed to show up and represent. The Saturday match did
not go well as disabilities contributed to a faltering finish.
By the time The Raptor got to hole 18, the soft turf and lengthy
strolls from cart path to tee ball left The Raptor out-of-gas!
Then, imagine my chagrin when I discovered that the Turf Care
Crew had placed the blue tee box on hole #18 as far back as is
humanly possible and still have a stance with out having one
foot off the box!...Needless to say, the carry to get over Dumas
Ditch on hole 18 is about 200 yards from there and The Raptor
being scared of the obvious hit a gawd awful drive that didn't
even get past the red tee box - which is about 150 yards from
the blue tee box. Two Rocketbalz later I picked up in shame and
headed for the Pro's Table...
Moving up to the White Tee Box on Sunday was a world of
difference. It sucks to be old...and fat...and drunk...and
Now, on to news of the day. It seems that the venerable "fivesome"
(which was developed to placate the "Gang of Six" several
seasons ago) has been given the last rights. I suppose this is
as equitable of a rule as is possible. Fivesomes are not good
under most circumstances. And this was proven again on Saturday
as a group of five hit it at 8:20 and stumbled into the
"Mulligan's Bar and Grill" about 4 hours and 15 minutes later.
It was doubly problematic since the first two groups had
finished about an hour earlier. By throwing the cart path rule
into the mix and some early season cob webs, the pace of play
was a tad slow...
There is no doubt that a group of five capable and savvy players
could meander around WWGC in 4 hours...but the early groups need
to know better...four hour rounds on Sat and Sunday morning when
u r the third or fourth group out are bogus. Three and one half
hours should be the goal! Again....if you can't play fast move
back to the 11:00 with Mr. Dumas. Skip the ball hawking...quit
fretting over two foot putts...play ready golf...skip the pre
shot routine...avoid walking around the putting green like a
Tiger, looking at the putt from four angles...skip those
multiple practice swings...especially when you dig up turf off
of a tee! There is nothing that frosts my balls more than
seeing someone hacking away on a tee and then slicing the gawd
dam ball into the woods! geeeezzeee! And yardage devices?
pleezeeee...If you are so freaking dumb that you have to pull up
next to a freaking 150 yard post and scope your approach you
should be teeing it up at 11:00 with Mr. Dumas. Face it -
you are not a pro - quit trying to act like one! It's obvious
that the pro's all play at Lake View now...that's where the good
Only The Strong Survive at WWGC - The Weak go elsewhere where
they can sniff and cough all day long. The Strong can go out
and shoot 90 and laugh about it...the Weak go out and shoot 80
and the piss and moan cause the can't break an egg...their
solution is to join some pitch and putt course where Drivers and
Wedges are the only clubs necessary...sniff cough...then they
use some silly rationale that they had a "buddy" that could save
them some money....LOL!...looking forward to staying Strong
March 16th, 2012 - It's Go Time God Speed...
As the end of day is approaching and it will soon be time to
start Happy Hour...I wanted to send out a general message of
warmth and kindness to all those who are preparing to assault
the environs of WWGC in the next few weeks.
Golf season has come early to Erie and as a result this weekend
is promising to be a great start to the what appears to be a
LONG season. The Raptor has already sent out the assignments
for "The Roster" for Sat and I have filled 6 foursomes for
Sunday. Sunday assignments are being kept confidential till Sat
afternoon. As usual a few hiccups have occurred and natually I
am sorry to those individuals who have been or are about to be
inconvenienced by my decisions.
Critical decision number one involves the weekend skin game. In
an effort to develop some early season buzz - I am going to
conduct a skin game both Sat and Sun and make the necessary
awards next weekend. So there will be a registration sheet in
the pro shop - you should sign up in advance. It is my belief
(and opinion) that I may not be present at the club on a 24/7
basis so we shant be having certain individuals hold back their
registration until after the round to avoid a donut if they play
bad. Also, I am going to get together with other interested
parties and try to figure out if we can incorporate pari-mutual
wagering in the weekend games...
As far as rules go, we shall play winter rules in your own
fairway. We will not be playing "jungle" rules. If you happen
to hit a shot off line, and are in a Gawd awful lie - shame on
you. Wedge it back to the fairway and clean the mud off your
ball. I tend to keep it in the fairway and I am a crippled 56
year old fat tub of crap.
If you have to call me with a rules question - I will certainly
attempt to answer it - then I will flatten your tires with a
dart gun. Were talkin about a $10.00 game here people.
Pairings...for about 99% of The Roster pairings are a breeze.
It's the 1% that is giving me a headache. Please...get your shit
together. I am sick of getting pings about slow play! If I
have to start instructing personel on how to play this game - I
will go green and start swinging! Cut out the extraordinary
crap And hit the gawd dam ball! and stick that yardage device up
your bass! Quit playing Pro V1's and go buy some cheap
Pinnacles If you hit a shot so far off line that it is
definately lost take a six and drop a ball in the fairway. If
you loose a few eggs put your name on them and maybe you will
get them back....geeeezzzze!
Regarding any special request to "play early" figit about
it!....special requests will automatically get you sent to the
"Dumas" Group...he tees off every Sat and Sun at 11:00.
Finally, if you are unhappy with an assignment and you decline
the pairing, I will move you over to Mr. Dumas's group.
July 31st, 2011 - What's The Big Deal
On Green Speed...
Happy August…it was another thrilling week up
yonder at WWGC and there is lot’s to talk about so let’s get
July turned out to be a very accommodated
month if you were a golfer in Erie, PA. Consider this…The Raptor
played 24 complete rounds in 31 days and I was sadly disappointed
that I had taken off the 7 days. Yes gang it is possible to play
golf “any day that ends in y”
The Raptor would like to give out special
recognition to perhaps one of the greatest six hole COD
performances in recorded history…on Wednesday, July 27th,
2011 The Raptor matched up with Lew McClain, Sr., Lew McClain, Jr.
and Gary Ebach and the final match paired Lew, Jr. and Gary E.
against The Raptor and Lew Sr.
The fireworks started immediately when Gary
holed a lengthy put of over 45 feet on Hole 13 which earned him a
“poley” skill prize…since he had to punch out his second shot from
the woods and had went through some histrionics when he clubbed
his approach to the putting surface…his low key reaction to
dropping the bomb was understandable.
The group moved over to the 184 yard 14th
Hole which was slightly downwind with the flagstick located in the
front right quadrant of the putting surface. The Raptor, hitting
first, hit a perfect approach using his brand new Burner
Superfast. The Raptor’s technique here is to saw off the impact
and put the ball high in the air to allow for a soft landing.
This was accomplished in dramatic fashion and the ball ended up
below the hole, about 15 feet…
Gary E hit his approach on a similar
trajectory but ended up about 20 feet from the hole…slightly to
the left of The Raptor. Lew Sr. hit a decent approach but failed
to reach the putting surface…Lew Jr. hitting last, hit a perfect
high 6 iron which landed INSIDE The Raptor’s ball about 7 feet
from the hole! What a shot!...Lew Sr. playing first, almost
chipped in and settled for a par three. Ebach, then took dead aim
and dropped his putt for a critical bird and his second poley in
as many holes!...The Raptor putting next made a valiant effort but
failed to covert on his birdie try and Lew Jr.
uncharacteristically missed his short putt as well…
Ebach continued to amaze on holes 15 and 16
making lengthy putts each time for additional poley awards and it
appeared that his poley string was about to end on hole 17 when he
left his approach short…all he did next was to chip in which
technically qualifies to run his skill award count to 5…the final
hole was a let down of sorts for Ebach as he unceremoniously
dumped his approach into the hazard…but Lew Jr. took up the slack
by canning a lengthy birdie putt to totally dominate the match and
pick up a 6th award with another poley! This
represented a previously unheard of milestone and was the talk of
the pro’s table after the match.
The irony in all of this poley talk is the
continuing struggle to develop some green speed during the hot
months at WWGC…it seems that the putting surfaces have a
propensity to grow at epic proportions during the course of the
day and by the end of the day are somewhat “shaggy” However, The
Raptor has noticed something which may be contributing to this
During the spring, the turf care crew
performed an airification process and it appears that the grass
which is growing from those “plug holes” is a different color and
texture that the grass in the putting surface. The new grass
seems to grow faster that the old grass and so the putting
surfaces become pocked by thousands of “nubs” during the course of
the day which may be promoting slower green speeds. While it’s
probable the Raptor is wrong on this issue, I just wanted to place
my observation into the aether to let it develop into a discussion
Here are some additional observations.
First, WWGC plugged the putting surfaces in the spring and as a
result, they were marginal for several weeks subsequent to that.
The portion of the season when they are generally healthy and
capable of being mowed at a lower mower height came and went with
no reasonable increase in speed.
Once the hot humid weather materialized in
late June, the putting surfaces were noticeably slower…this seems
to fly in the face of reason and tends to create a dissonance from
the consumer. If there was one issue that may make of break a
player’s determinations it may be green speed. If the greens are
slow, players make avoid taking a game there considering it to be
a waste of capital.
Now it’s August and it’s still hot but
temperatures are schedule to be lower this week…this may be a good
sign but with September just around the corner, and a planned
maintenance schedule sure to include the greens, the season is
technically about the next couple of weeks. There has to be a way
around this…I we could land a man on the moon we should be able to
mow putting greens to a desirable height in June, July and
August….how do they do this in North Carolina?...here is the recap
in a nutshell...everyone is wondering why it's always dead at
WWGC...is the course hard?...absolutely...will they ever build a
clubhouse?...probably not...how are the greens?...slow.
Shot making is one thing but putting is a
whole different matter...as long as the greens are slow, players
will keep playing at Elk Valley
June 6th, 2011 - Feed My Envelope...
Robert Gates, United States SecDef was in the news yesterday.
Secretary Gates was over yonder in Afghanistan visiting with the
troops and during the course of his visit he exported one of those
"McCain Moments" which have been popularized by aging supraretard,
Senator John McCain (R), Arizona, during his several trips to the
third world. These McCain Moments allow the exporter to utter USA
"foreign policy" which is contrary to the "official" foreign
policy of the present (most hated) Obama Administration.
Secretary Gates is sitting on a position that is is most unwise
to start bringing home the troops as our work there remains
undone...you know...that old Bush Doctrine which states its better
to fight them over there etc. etc. Meanwhile The Obama
Adminstration is stating a different policy and hopes to bring
"some" of our troops home....or perhaps to a more hospitable green
zone in say...Germany...anyhow this misinformational foreign
policy is bound to confuse our adversaries and I suppose that is
the best kind of foreign policy. The Raptor is positive that many
less desirous countries across the globe attempt to remain out of
US cross hairs in order to avoid a drone strike...which are cool!
How does this fit in with my envelope you ask? As many of you
know a somewhat complicated situation has developed at WWGC and
it's primarily The Raptor's fault. It started several seasons ago
when "The Roster" was nonexistent and The Raptor played his
weekend golf with guys such as Mahoney, Lupp and Chernoff. Those
members (and days) are long gone and since then, The Roster has
continued to expand as a means of providing a easy way to promote
good fellowship and a steady pace of play.
What The Raptor perceived those several seasons ago was that
there were variable numbers of players in each tee time between
6:30 and 9:30 when most WWGC members often played on the weekends
and the observer to this cluster would see a dizzying array of
groups from foursomes all the way to onesomes (who could not
forget those weekends when Rick Klien would venture out into the
mix playing by himself in the midst of the other groups)...
In order to create some order out of this chaos, The Raptor
developed The Roster and slowly but surely several "groups" have
merged into one in an effort to create a harmonious parade of
foursomes during the morning hours. As a byproduct of The Roster,
a skin game has developed which has certainly created it's own
controversies and it's probably due to how The Raptor collects the
fees...by "Feeding My Envelope"
The Raptor finds it much easier to hold open a crisp white
envelope rather than look at the prospective victim of this
extortion with puppy dog eyes in a "please play in my game
posture". Unfortunately there is a small but intrepid group of
players who have become resistant to this tactic and have
developed cock block tactics and a special walk in order to avoid "Feeding The
It goes something like this...The Raptor generally goes out in
the first group...this is by design BTW...so that I can set up a
"pro's table" in either the Mulligan's Grill or the super fabulous
Asphalt Bar & Grill and collect the skin game fees. Certainly it
would be more efficient to give this task up to the Pro Shop, but
The Raptor has determined that those guys...several of whom are
actually Disney animatronic actors...would rather tend to the
serious business of protecting "The Book" from being
...anyhow at the point when a prospective victim is about
to have The Envelope thrust in their face they can perform a
"cock block" which in effect is the blocker stating that
they had proclaimed themselves "out of the skin game on the
first tee"...unfortunately there is no way to put on the cock
block with authority. When this cock block was performed
recently on The Raptor, the blocker became "cheesed off"
when the rules were discussed and proceeded to throw his fee on
the table rather than Feed It Into The Envelope...this was
offensive to The Raptor in that I do not appreciate money being
thrown at me as if I was some Jewish Money Changer at the Jerusalem
Another method to avoid Feeding The Envelope is to rotate the head 180
degrees in the opposite direction of The Pro's Table and go about their business
(posting a score etc.)...then to insure that they are not noticed,
they turn around and walk past the pro's table with head rotated
180 degrees towards the direction of the proshop and the exquisite hats table in the pro shop
then hustle out the door
into freedom. No doubt there is a moment when they figure
they may have been seen but that feeling soon goes away.
The Raptor is not sure how to resolve this issue but one thing
is certain...now that this "dreaded" skin game has grown...it is
certainly not going away. One solution which The Raptor has is to
have the proshop reserve a tee time in the Sat and Sun book under
the title "Dass". This time would be later in the
day, obviously - but not too
late - say about 10:00 AM. Then, when The Raptor sends out his
weekly assignment to The Roster, if the prospective dissenter is
so inclined, he can text back "Dass" and play at 10:00. This
solution could be used for a wide variety of ills including cock
blocking, head rotating, problems with flatulence or gingivitis and even that rare moment
when the player would feel more comfortable playing with...er
playing by himself.
Okay...Okay...The Raptor is having a McCain Moment...let's skip
the niceties...here it is in a nutsack...if you
consider yourself part of The Roster, it's $10...otherwise start
playing at 10:00...and if you feel that The Raptor is being "prickly"...
The Raptoram not sorry...
May 25th, 2011 - Good Afternoon...
The Raptor is bushed...this heat/humidity is
killing me!...well, it rained again yesterday...almost 2 inches!
I am mad as hell, and I am not going to take it anymore! It's
time to get serious here, Erie is such a lovely place and I've got
to figure that that one special summer day is just around the
corner...you know...75 degrees, sunny, faint whisper of wind,
puffy clouds on the horizon, a joyful experience...then it's on to
the hellish awfulness that is June, July and August.
Congrats are in order to the WWGC Inter club
Team who represented the club at LVCC on Sunday. While the team
finished third, I am sure that they can take away some solace in
knowing that they showed up and played well. Scores were: Dave
Hewett (75), Lou Natalie (78), Jim DelSandro Jr. (79), Don Fessler
Jr. (79) Lucas Marsh (82), and Jim Delsandro (Coach) (84). The
event or "toonament" was won by LVCC who were represented by Rick
Carlotti (73), Mark Noce (74), Ellery Tarbell (75), Ron Coleman
(77) , Ron DiSantis (84) and Mike Wolfe (87).
The Raptor has been accumulating email
addresses like gangbusters and as a result this update is going
out to almost 100 present and past WWGC members. I have decided
to continue to keep our past members in the loop as there is
nothing finer than keeping up with what's going on att he club.
Especially since we have a great crew including our staff of pro
shop/clubhouse personnel and the turf care crew...all four of
them...ya that's right...this season has been so bad that WWGC is
being run by four guys! Rich Rocky, Brian Tyler, Rob Gorring and
Len Zielenski...those other folks you see such as Kim, Adam,
Desiree and Jeff as well as the several guys on the mower crew are
actually high tech animatronics "actors" which were built as
Disney Studios...pretty cool huh!
Saturday's golf featured the annual WWGC
three man scramble which was won by the team of Fessler, Natalie
and a Guest (Rob Hersch) while the Net Division was won by our old
friends John Torok, Damian Knight and Rob Brim...Torok said he
sealed the deal on the final hole with a 60 foot putt!...awesome
Sandy er...John...Even though there was a constant threat of
rain on Sunday we still clocked in with 24 players. The Raptor is
really appreciative of everyone's support - I have been monitoring
the weather for this weekend and it's starting to shape up...
Get this gang...Saturday and Monday, The
Roster could clock in at 36! and Sunday is no slouch either with
at least 20 players committed at present!
If everything goes according to plan, The
Raptor is working towards our first "major" toonament of the year
on Monday - I think we will include the skins (as usual) but also
conduct a blind draw and the closest to the pins - so plan on
bringing $20.00 from your communion funds guys! Saturday and
Sunday will be standard events with gross and net skins only.
May 19, 2011-
Subject: Weekday Update
Good Morning and WTF...
Yesterday proved to be a memorable one for
The Raptor as the family gathered to help celebrate Dad's 82nd
Birthday. As is the usual case we dined at Dad's favorite joint,
The Erie Maennerchor, the place was rockin...people flocking in to
enjoy fine cuisine and chilled adult beverages served up by some
of the fiercest trolls imaginable. With the average age of the
patron base being about 79, The Raptor likes calling the place
"The Dance of the Living Dead" - hello Rodney...
For those of you out of town or perhaps going
out of town, it rained again yesterday...almost an inch.. Per PGA
Class A Pro Rich Rocky's request, The Raptor has obtained
historical data from some prior periods regarding rain and have
summarized the results at this website -
a word of caution here gang...if you are in
any way deeply religious and perhaps have your fingers crossed in
anticipation of The Rapture...which is scheduled to occur on
Saturday...you should probably not read the thread
Now on to some other news...an intrepid group
of WWGC's finest led by major domo (this is not a reference to
another word ending in omo which starts with "h") Mark Patrizia
have "slipped the surly bonds of earth" and jetted to the west
coast to play golf at one of America's finest...Pebble Beach...how
cool is that? Included on the roster are: Richard Brown, Nat
Burnside, Gary Ebach and Lew McClane of WWGC. At this writing it
is possible that young Lew McClane has been replaced by Lew Sr.
based on some emails The Raptor received yesterday. Gawd, The
Raptor is jealous...big time...Peable Beach, Spyglass Hill and I
believe a third course (Monterrey CC?) are included...to bad they
couldn't have scheduled Cypress....where is Bing Crosby when u
need him? Good luck guys and have fun!
Finally, I would like to get some feedback
from our WWGC members. This thought developed after going back to
last year when WWGC conducted a Club Championship which was won by
Ron Coleman. It should be noted that The Championship division
has lost four of the 12 players who contested for the top prize
shrinking the potential field to less than 10 players. In
addition, Dustin Colman will not be returning to defend his Blue
Tee Division Championsip and Scott Adams is not returning to
defend his division.
The Raptor has no axe to grind here...what I
am proposing is a different way to look at the club championship.
For 2011, I am proposing two divisions...the gross division and
the net division. The gross division would be contested from "the
championship tees" and the victor would be crowned "the Champion
Golfer of The Year" . If there ends up being a handful of players
competing...so be it.
The Net division would encompass all other
players and would be conducted using my previously conceived
"Nexus" rule. For the Net Division, the players will play two
rounds of golf and keep an accurate score, using the Rules Of Golf
as the guide. The Blue Tees would be designated as The Nexus and
any players who tee up from the blues would face no Handicap
adjustment. Any individuals who play from the Whites would have
their handicap lowered by two points and those players who elect
to play from the gold tees would have 4 points of adjustment. I
know...I know...wha.wha.wha...net division...
The goal...to get more participation! Just
once The Raptor would like to see a club event where all of the
members compete - If we can't do that one weekend a year - why
bother have members - so let me know what you think - thanks
May 16th, 2011 - Good
Who amongst us has not had one of those bad
golf days similar to what happened to David Toms yesterday. That
putt he missed couldn't have been more than 4 feet, yet David
turned it into a Thurman Munson. Toms had certainly led us on a
wild ride yesterday. The Raptor was impressed with how Toms
stayed in the game subsequent to the disastrous bogey on hole
#16. I am still unsure why he elected to go for the green but
that was water under a bridge. Then, in a total ironic situation,
Toms nutted a drive on hole #18, only to end up in a freakin
divot!....r u kidding me! This has to be the most awful rule in
the game! The same thing happened to Earnie Els in the 1994 US
Open at Oakmont. Yeah...Yeah...rub of the green...sacred bond
with the rules...Mary Queen of Scotts...Old Tom Morris...Harry
David was able to convert though and his
poley putt which was as dramatic as Tiger's 2008 final hole putt
at the US Open was a thing of beauty. I suppose that Toms may
have gotten too aggressive with his birdie chance on the playoff
hole and it did not appear that he charged the first putt. But,
now that that's over, we can all get ready for the next event of
consequence....no it's not the Memorial...it's the US Open at
Congressional...c'mon! can't somebody from America step up and win
Now, on to the buzz at WWGC...Saturday was a
solid as opposed to a shank with a final field of almost 30
players signing up for a chance at glory and what happened?...well
Jimmy DelSandro Jr, one of our new members for 2011 ran the table
and picked up three skins on holes 1, 2 and 8! Wow! what a
story....The Raptor has never seen anything like
it!....Congratulations Jim! That was some fine playing! The
course played decent, even though there had been some overnight
rain and to tell the truth, The Raptor was amazed that it didn't
rain on Saturday...
Sunday was a different story as rain hit hard
starting at about 9:00 and it got cold in a hurry...there had been
a handful of players who started but every one came off the golf
course once the heavy stuff started falling. This is a tough pill
to swallow, The forecast looks pretty bleak for the next several
days and Memorial Day is just around the corner so hang in there
and get your rain gear organized.
The Raptor also noted that many of the
putting greens have matured from the punching process...while they
are not lightning quick they are not as bumpy as a week ago. So
that is a positive. The Raptor made extra effort to fix a few
ball marks over the weekend. I am still encouraging the same from
the rest of the gang.
This coming weekend, two events are on tap.
Saturday, WWGC is staging the Spring Scramble...it looks like a
positive turn out with about 20 three man teams signed up.. Let's
hope the weather holds.
Sunday, WWGC will be represented by six
members at the annual EDGA Interclub. This year's event is being
contested at LVCC which will no doubt present a tough challenge.
Our team will include: Dave Hewett, Don Fessler, Lucas Marsh, Jim
DelSandro, Jim DelSandro, Jr. and Lou Natalie. Best of luck and
play well guys.
May 13, 2011 From Bill Reichert - Subject:
The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Erie Golfers
Here yee Here yee!
Let it be known that upon this day, there shall be no whining or
cajoling about the fairness of the system we all know to be the
Failure to abide may result in a Medieval stoning!
Any unfairness that may be a result of the handicap system will be
evened out by the unforgiving and sometimes torturous golf course.
Any success of birdie from any tee should be celebrated as a
victory of man vs. course.
Hence, the thought of appropriately renaming the course from
Whispering Woods to Screaming Trees has been put on the table!
The league of extraordinary golfer men which meets weekly has
identified the following key people that shall be knighted and
from this day forward be able to spread words of wisdom in
blasphemy for all to read!
Rich Rocky- Sir Golfs real Good
Rob Goring- Sir Veillance of Course
Ray Kallner- Sir Loin of Pork
Raptor- Sir Ver of Toonements
Bill Reichert- Sir Shaggs a Lot
John Torok- Sir Coors Light
If anyone objects or would like to nominate any others- speak now
or forever hold your peace
And to think, we just signed up to play golf.....
These are the actual original rules of golf that were first
The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers-
The 13 FIRST RULES OF GOLF - 1744 -1745
1. You must tee your ball
within one club’s length of hole.
2. Your tee must be on
3. You are not to change
the ball you strike off the tee.
4. You are not to remove
Stones, Bones or any Break Club, for sake of playing your ball,
except upon the Fair Green and that only within a club’s length of
5. If your Ball come
among watter or any watery filth, you are at liberty to take out
your Ball and, brining it behind the hazard and teeing it, you may
play it with any club and allow your Adversary a Stroke, for so
getting out your ball.
6. If your balls be found
anywhere touching one another you are to lift the first ball, till
you play the last.
7. At Holing, you are to
play your Ball honestly for the Hole, and not play upon your
adversary’s Ball, not lying in your way to the Hole.
8. If you should lose
your Ball, by its being taken up, or any other way you are to go
back to the Spot, where you struck last, and drop another Ball,
and allow your adversary a stroke for the misfortune.
9. No man at Holing his
Ball is to be allowed, to mark his way to the Hole with his club
or anything else.
10. If a Ball be stopp’d by
any person, Horse, Dog or anything else, the Ball so stopp’d must
be played where it lyes.
11. If you draw your Club, in
order to Strike and proceed so far in the Stroke, as to be
bringing down your Club: If then your Club shall break, in any
way, it is to be Accounted a Stroke.
12. He whose Ball lyes
farthest from the Hole is obliged to play first.
13. Neither Trench, Ditch or
Dyke, made for the presentation of the Links, nor the Scholar’s
Holes or the Soldier’s Lines, Shall be accounted a Hazard. But
the ball is to be taken out and tee’d and play’d with any iron
13b. If thy Tee shot has fallen off
the course on the first tee, there shall be no Breakfast Ball
played and the Hitter of the ball should storm down the Fairway
mumbling filth and slang, laugh about it and write a double bogey
on the scorecard
May 9th, 2011 - Good Morning and
This past weekend was a tale of two
extremes...on Saturday, the Roster came out in force and a full
field of 32 players eventually showed up. On the other hand,
Sunday's Roster had a meager turnout of 14 players...not bad
considering that it was Mother's Day and as a result many spouses
needed to lay around like a beached whale all day...stuffing bon
bons in their craw while hubby cooked breakfast and or performed
other wise droidal activities...the Raptor abhors holidays
especially artificially created ones which are designed primarily
to benefit the Greeting Card, Florist and restaurant industry.
Oh well...the only highlight The Raptor can
safely state is that I played like crap. In addition scores from
many others were a little high. My driver was off and I missed a
few short putts....The Raptor canned a monster putt on Hole # 8 on
Sunday which was the only par out of 14 players and hence...a
Here is a quick heads up...on Sat May 21st,
WWGC will conduct the annual Spring Scramble and the proshop has
blocked off tee times for the Scramble starting at about 8:00.
This event is bound to cause considerable consternation amongst
low handicap "playahs" since their only goal in life is to torture
themselves into believing that the course record in conceivably in
their sights...keep dreaming Bishop Pickering...meanwhile the
remainder of the group is content to know that their next majestic
slice out of bounds or three putt is only moments away...
as a result of this situation, the pro shop
has provided a small block of tee times for members who avoid
scrambles. The Raptor has elected to get in to the
Scramble...with two guests.. I also noted that some of The Roster
are signed up for the Scramble...as of this writing I have booked
no member tee times for Saturday May21st...so...if you are
inclined to think course record I suppose you have some
options...you could immediately contact the proshop and determine
if any tee times remain open for the 21st - or form a group and
play in the Scramble. Anyhow for those who do not want to play on
Saturday May 21st...please give me heads up for Sunday May 22nd so
I can make sure to book enough tee times...
If there are individuals on The Roster who
need help putting together a Scramble Group, The Raptor can help
with that as well. Carpe diem...
May 2nd, 2011 Good Morning...
It was another strong weekend at WWGC with 28
players on the roster for Saturday and a "solid" group of 20
players for Sunday. I use the term solid since the weather on
Sunday was questionable but a dedicated group showed up and played
through some spotty showers which were a minor nuisance for a hole
or two. Based on discussions with Rob Brim, the Town Crier is
here to tell you that Rob is suffering from a condition know as
"swamp ass". This is as a result of the repeated visits to
Chiplotle and Moes Grill with the subsequent explosive diarrhea
Saturdays big winner was Rich Brown, who went
low on holes 12 and 15 . And lets not forget Rick Chase who
scored a gross/net award on hole #3.
This fate was duplicated by Tom Tomechko on
Sunday and has The Raptor wondering about WWGC's "Make Hay Corner"
of the second, third, fourth and fifth holes. The Raptor tries
hard on this section of the course as they present an easy path
towards a birdie. But it seems that week in and week out, there
is always an award on one of those holes, if not all of them.
With a field of 25 to 30 players you would think that there would
be more than one birdie but that hasn't been the case...you guys
need to step up and make some golf shots!....as Bluto said "what's
this lying around chit!"
On Sunday, Dave Devine, a guest of Lew
McClain, Sr. scored a birdie 2 on hole #2 to pick up an award,
while Jim Piekanski did the same on hole #11...way to go guys!
An interesting side note to Saturday's play
was the impressive tee sheet which had play from 7:30 all the way
to past 3:00....that's a lot of golf and the management has to be
pleased with the results. It was also the first weekend that the
putting surfaces had matured this season and The Raptor can attest
that they were very true that I made a LOT of putts...a special
note goes out to the guys up at the range who brought in Stack and
Tilt guru's Andy Plummer and Mike Bennett (I think) to provide
instruction on this fast growing technique. Since The Raptor has
a grooved swing that requires no tampering, it wasn't necessary
for me to check it out but I noted that there were tons of people
up there which was way cool.
It goes to show you that WWGC is a happening
place with lot's of potential!
And that brings me to the subject of this
update....ball marks on putting greens. For starters, The Raptor
would like to encourage everyone in the group to fix a few extra
marks when you play to help keep those putting surfaces true. I
can attest that I am soooo bad that the numbers of opportunities
to play a full shot into the greens is slim and none but, I make
an effort to fix a mark or two per hole. Based on some reading I
did on the web, there is a recommendation to avoid damaging the
roots of the turf when fixing the mark...practice makes
perfect...The Raptor plans to try to fix 3 marks per green
starting this weekend. Hope The Roster can do the same.
I already have 27 confirmations for Sat with
several on The Roster still to respond. So, I have reserved 32
spots...I think we can fill them so I am looking forward to
another great weekend!
April 27th, 2011 - Good Morning,
What a beautiful start to the day with the
bright sunshine and warm temps lightening the hearts of the Erie
area, thoughts can turn to wasting yet another day trading emails
and insults back and forth...so...
Jim Piekanski's eloquent passage which was
submitted earlier had a very important piece which was the
clubhouse thread. It's apparent that clubhouse dreams are on
everyone's mind so submitted for your approval is my clubhouse
First it seems logical to place the clubhouse
over in that green area adjacent to hole #18. Using conventional
logic, the clubhouse should be...check that...must be exquisite.
It should tie in with the optics in place up at the range....kind
of a cabin feel eh?...The entrance should be placed in such a way
to give the individual a sense of grandness reserved for the rich
and famous. There should be a lantern wielding lawn jockey
announcing the entrance and it should be programmed to say "good
morning sir" as you walk by.
Perhaps there could be wings...to the left
the proshop, to the right the ultra exclusive locker room which is
staffed by an attendant who opens the door for each visitor. The
proshop will not only contain the latest equipment and fashion
accessories, but will also showcase a launch monitor and simulator
as well as a nicely contoured practice putting green. The locker
room for gals will feature the traditional potty and... a bedai...as
an added feature, Adam Scott will be on permanent assignment to
issue foot massages and shoulder rubs. Over at the men's side,
Jessica Simpson and Carmen Electra will be handing out the towels
and performing certain "services" including a shoe shine...
The now famous (or infamous) Asphalt Bar &
Grill will have to be eliminated in favor of a smartly designed
patio with awning. Each table will incorporate a built-in
refrigeration unit which contains high end craft brews and pre
mixed martinis as well as shrimp cocktails. Periodically,
waitresses dressed as "french maids" and waiters outfitted as
"Chippendale" dancers will check to insure that all is well. All
food and drinks will be complimentary. The view from the patio
will be sweeping and should be built in such a way in order to see
the action on both the 9th and the 18th holes.
For the discriminating fine diner, a trendy
boutique restaurant will occupy the top floor or "penthouse" this
area will be accessed by an escalator...along the way, the walls
will feature pictures of the golf course as well as Zack Polanski
relieving himself down by Zahn's Run...
The carts will be converted to ultra spacious
electric models with a refrigeration unit as well as GPS hole
mapping and scoring displays and a picnic area will be set up
where the present practice green is to book loud raucous special
golf events (after all - the tiki bar has to be used)...
or the trailer can just be moved over
April 26th, 2011 - I can't
Clean up façade of Trailer/ProShop/Grill
Room/Locker Room – looks messy...If there is going to be a
pond in formt of it, put out a few small rubber duckys or
Get more trash barrels as the ones near
the exquisite tiki bar fill up and look bloated
Build a bocce court or bean bag toss for
old fat people who can’t play golf any more
Get rid of the geese. Don’t buy dog. Use
permanent methods of eradication which include a machete, hack
off their honking beaks
Groom the hillside at #4 to be consistent
with rough as opposed to gorse
Develop a ball mark fixing crew
Remove loose divots daily and fill with a
sand/soil/seed mixture to renew the fairways
Place growing fabric on unused portions
of par three tee boxes to promote fresh turf more rapidly
Move hazard line on 7 closer to tree line
– convert high grass to manageable rough
Get rid of the taint on 8
Reduce size of “bog” in front of 8 green
by ½ to give us a chance to go for green but still be able to
chip on for a par
Build French drain system on 9 to
eliminate the creekbed down in the valley left of the fairway
Eliminate or reduce “bog” on ten – it is
a dangerous, time wasting piece of goofiness especially with
all the dead logs which are entwined in the "heather"
Totally redo the cart path system at 11
to get carts up to the respective tee boxes – use soil from
project to fill in vortex on 15
Erect sign on Hole #12 to hole #16
officially designating “The Raptor's Ravine” as…The Raptor’s
Fill in the vortex
Improve drainage on #17 fairway around
180 to 200 yards from putting surface. Also make the
meandering hazard a more definitive and attractive hazard at
cost of $100,000.00
Fill in creekbed on 18 which is 90 to 100
yards from putting surface
Have a gereat day...The Raptor
April 26th, 2011 - Subject: RE:
I have to defend the Raptor because I look so
forward to his recaps every Monday.
The “Raptors” comments are not based on
“opinions” but the fact that WW is down to 70+ members after
opening with a waiting list. The course is fantastic. Anyone who
dislikes the “course” dislikes the fact that their inflated sense
of golfing self worth is usually humbled off the first tee. WW
has a membership retention problem and it’s not because haters are
converting the flock. If you like to play good golf it’s the best
deal in town so what’s going on?
Does Torok’s small penis have something to do
Apr 26, 2011 9:16 am -
Subject: Re: Weekend Update
I feel that I need to jump into a few things here. I have
refrained from comment the past few weeks when these emails keep
popping up but I believe it is now time to here some info from
"All is not lost????" I do believe you are a little out of line
with the comments about WWGC lately. Did I miss something the
last few weeks? Did the course turn into a goat ranch? Did we
change the holes? Is the airport coming in to put in a new runway
and eliminating the back nine? I think you are making statements
about WWGC based on opinions from "Erie" people and even more than
that "Erie haters". I found myself extremely concerned about Erie
peoples opinions the first few years we were open but came to a
realization that our business is 50% supported by people from
outside of Erie County as well. You all also have to realize that
we will never lose the "New Kid in Town" label or how I like to
call it the "Scarlet golf letter". I honor and respect our own
members opinions much more than any others. You are the ones who
play it the most and don't have the tarnished opinions.
Don't worry about what other clubs members
say about the place and enjoy it for what it is. If you could
stand behind the counter with us someday, or better yet come to
the out of town golf shows in the winter with us and hear the
comments from people who don't have altered opinions about WWGC
you would be amazed at what they say. I used to get all caught up
in what certain "Erie big shots" had to say about WWGC but I don't
pay to much attention to any of it anymore. I have thought long
and hard about sending out an email that I received from the
Executive Vice President/Chief of Operations from the PGA Tour
concerning WWGC last summer. Andy Pazder originally from Erie
helped me forget and dismiss many out of line comments about WWGC
from the local haters. Andy believes that WWGC is a fantastic
golf course and said comments that would make all of you members
extremely proud to be part of WWGC. I think we all can say that
Andy has seen the best of the best and his opinion is one that
really matters. You have to ask yourself this question concerning
outside opinions.... If you picked up WWGC and moved it to
Pittsburgh what would these people have to say about it? I guess
I want all of you to not worry about what members we lost or who
didn't rejoin. Let's be the bigger people in all of this and not
take any of it personal. Let's not get caught up in the golfing
politics of Erie, Pennsylvania. Who cares if a local country club
member is playing here or a local country club person quits after
9 holes because they lost 6 balls, or another country club member
was upset because we didn't have Grey Goose Vodka at the turn.
With this horrific start weather wise we need
all the support of both members and guests to make 2011 a great
year! We enjoy each and every one of you and hope that you guys
all see that when you come out to the club. I personally want to
thank each of you who are either long term members, new members,
guests or guys who might play it once a year. We cherish your
support and business and are very proud to be affiliated with
WWGC. I am optimistic that we will have a rebound in weather, a
great support from the members, hotel packages, and daily play to
make a slow start of 2011 to another tremendous year. Hang in
there everyone golf season is soon to start and hopefully not end
PGA Director of Golf
Whispering Woods Golf Club
April 25th, 2011 - Good Morning,
It was another interesting weekend over
yonder at WWGC as play was conducted both Holy Saturday and Easter
Sunday. First, it should be noted that there was a "solid"
turnout on Saturday with 14 players completing 18 holes and only 4
There were no heroics to speak of similar to
Jim Piekanski's hole-in-one from last weekend but The Raptor
picked up a rare skin on Sunday with a par on hole #8. And Lew
McClane, Sr. stepped up to the pay window with back to back birds
on hole #5 and 6. The bird on 6 was the result from a lengthy
putt of perhaps 40 feet...Unfortunately, Sundays roster was
extremely thin with only 9 players but who could blame the
no-shows...the weather was questionable and there was a threat of
rain all morning. The heavy stuff never materialized but it did
drizzle on a few occasions.
The course is on the wet side from all this
rain and The Raptor noted a gaggle of Lawrence Park players
toiling on Saturday at WWGC once the sun came out. Apparently,
The Park is "under water" but The Raptor wasn't able to confirm
that. Still, for "former" WWGC members to come out to WWGC versus
trudging around LPGC gives The Raptor "hope" that all is not lost
and that WWGC can still be a go to place to play a quality round
of golf and pick up a delicious Smith's hot dog at the turn!
Moving on...this Saturday, the weather may
actually be nice and The Raptor has received numerous
confirmations filling up at least 7 foursomes...this is nice.
The Roster now has over 50 players and The
Raptor is dreaming of the day when we can get everyone up to the
club for a spectacular and fabulous "toonament"
Looking forward to the weekend and its only
April 18th, 2011…Good Morning,
For many of you this past weekend was a
washout (or windout) and as a result you probably spent time
working around the house or perhaps watching a little NASCAR racin
where Jimmie Johnson came out of nowhere to pick up the top prize
at Talledegha. You may have even cuddled with your spouse which
The Raptor is here to tell you that there is
great news to report as WWGC member Jie Piekanski recorded his
first ever hole-in-one at the 6th hole on Sunday. Jim was playing
in a group that included Lew McClane, Sr., George Carter and Lou
Stack. The shot was executed from the white tee box to a white
flagstick in the middle right section of the putting surface at
roughly 178 yards with a #4 rescue club. Subsequent to the round
eight of us gathered at The Pro's Table to celebrate with adult
beverages and some friendly jocularity and good will. Thus adding
to the lore and history that is WWGC...
The weekend weather could best be described
as raw...even The Raptor was skeptical of a complete round on
Sunday as our group of The Raptor, Richard Brown, Alan Hosford,
Lew McClane, Jr. and Frank Fatica made our way towards the first
tee. Naturally once we got on the golf course we were happy in
our work and hardly noticed the chill until the hail/rain storm at
the 12th tee. After that weather pattern blew through, our groups
played the final 6 holes in some fierce wind which was certainly
noticeable on holes 15 and 16. While birdies were few and in some
cases a single par was good for skin, The Raptor was able to cash
in after two superb shots on hole #17 culminating in a tricky 15
foot birdie putt!
With Easter coming up The Raptor is sure that the majority of The
Roster will be spending time with family (or perhaps donning
sackcloth to raise donations for the poor...and the sick...), but
there are spots available both Sat and Sun if you are interested
in playing in what looks to be another miserable weather
weekend...The Raptor will send out some inquiries to check on your
availability to play.