Golf Course Management

JUL 2019

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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20 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 07.19 A passing noted: Garry Crothers, CGCS Garry Crothers, CGCS, spent part of his life overseas. Upon returning to the U.S. from one of those trips, he came back with a nickname. "He helped found the Indonesia Golf Course Super- intendents Association," says close friend Ted Horton, CGCS. "In Jakarta (capital of Indonesia), they called him 'The Candy Man.' He used to carry around lollipops, I think." Undoubtedly, Crothers' journey in this industry was Three industry stalwarts gathered for this image taken several years ago: On the left is Garry Croth - ers, CGCS, who passed away in May. Next to him is the late Joseph Troll, Ph.D., who is alongside Ted Horton, CGCS. GCM file photo STATE of the industry On-course golfers % Off-course golfers % Juniors (6-17) 11 24 Young adults (18-34) 26 44 Women 23 44 Non-Caucasians 18 37 The NGF report distinguishes between on-course golfers (those who play golf at traditional green-grass golf courses) and off-course golfers, who play at golf-entertainment venues like Topgolf, use indoor simulators or use stand-alone ranges. Off-course participants tend to be younger and more diverse. See table to the right. Nearly half — 44% — of golf simulator users are non-golfers. In 2018, 36% of the U.S. population (107 million folks) played, watched or read about golf. Over the last decade, facilities have invested $3.5 billion in major renovation projects — defined as projects in which a minimum of nine holes were closed for at least three months. Golfers spent $2.7 billion on golf clubs and balls — in 2018 alone. The National Golf Foundation recently released its 2019 Golf Industry Report. It found 33.5 million people participated in golf, driving an $84 billion industry. one sweet ride. Crothers, a 59-year association member who died May 27 at 86, set the Certified Golf Course Su- perintendent bar in 2012. When he recertified seven years ago, Crothers became the only person who had completed 40 years as an active CGCS since the program was es- tablished in 1971. "I'm really proud of that," Crothers told GCM then. "It (being a superintendent) is in your blood." Crothers earned a bachelor's degree and a masters in agronomy at Penn State University and was mentored (as was Horton) by past GCSAA president Sherwood A. Moore, CGCS. Crothers' first superintendent job came in 1960 at Deal Golf & Country Club in New Jersey. In time, Crothers was chapter president in New Jersey, Vermont and New York, where the Metropolitan GCSA honored him with the Sherwood A. Moore Award, which is presented to a superintendent who advanced the profession, image, status and reputation of superintendents. "He was one of the very best agronomists in the busi - ness," Horton says of Crothers. "He was slow. Meticulous. Deliberate. And he'd work it out." Horton says he spoke with Crothers every Saturday for decades, including two days before his death. Besides serving in the U.S. Army in Germany, Croth- ers traveled to Japan, leading a grow-in at a golf devel- opment there, and he was an active member of Rotary International, plus he was involved in his community in Randolph, Vt., as a senior center volunteer and in other similar endeavors. He is survived by his former wife, Sha- ron Crothers; daughter, Sherrie Tucker; two sisters; and other relatives. — H.R. Bieck awarded for grassroots efforts William Bieck, a retired Certified Golf Course Superin- tendent from McCook, Neb., has received GCSAA's Grass- roots Ambassador Leadership Award. The Grassroots Ambassador Leadership Award, pre- sented quarterly in partnership with The Toro Co., honors

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