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Communications intern bids farewell, take two

August 12, 2016

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Today is Communications intern Tim Merrick’s last here at Golf Association of Philadelphia HQ. Tim returned to our team this tournament season and proved invaluable. We asked him to reflect on the summer that was.

Throughout the school year last year, I was thinking about summer 2016 plans. After spending the 2015 summer season with GAP as a Communications Intern, I didn’t think I was going to be able to return for a second season. I wasn’t sure it was the best move for my career moving forward, working the same internship two summers in a row. But, in December, I came to the realization that this internship was something that I couldn’t pass up. To say that I am happy with the decision I made is an understatement. I came back because I knew that this type of work would provide me with consistent work writing about golf, on-site experience at some of the area’s, and nation’s, premiere golf courses, and relationships that I will take with me for a long time.

I couldn’t have asked for a better summer with the Golf Association of Philadelphia. This year, I feel like I’ve made a lot of strides in my work. First, I feel like my writing has grown exponentially, even from last year. After working with Marty, Tony and Dan, who expect a certain standard of writing, I have been able to really hone my skills. I’ve been able to really get creative in certain areas, while also progressively tweaking my own style. Throughout the summer, I was able to talk with and write about multiple people. This experience has been valuable in teaching me how to strike a conversation with anybody, about anything. Last year, I could have been a bit shy in this area. This year, however, I feel like I was able to really talk with people and ask questions that would help my story. Finally, I think that my experiences with photos, video, social media, and Periscope have been invaluable. To watch the success of Periscope continue to rise has been awesome. From last year’s first broadcast at the Mid-Am, to last week’s 180+ live viewers at Huntingdon Valley for the Patterson Cup, it’s been amazing to watch. I’ve become a better photographer, a more accurate social media user, and a more creative videographer, all thanks to my time here with GAP.

Over my two years working with the Communications department, I’ve worked on a lot of different stories. This year, I really enjoyed working on the Sam Dalton J. Wood Platt Caddie Scholar story. Sam was a really nice kid who I really enjoyed speaking with and learning more about. Like most of those stories, I thought it was awesome to tell the story of somebody who was in need of the scholarship, has been doing really great things, and has used the scholarship to better themselves. Going on-site with Sam and writing the story was definitely one of my favorite assignments. As for the tournaments, there were quite a few that I really enjoyed. Spending four days at Merion Golf Club was amazing. But, my favorite would probably have to be the Junior Boys’ Championship at Tavistock Country Club, spent with Tony Regina. I really enjoyed doing video recaps all three days. The GAP Junior golf scene is really competitive and it was fun watching those kids play really well. The matches were intense and the course was awesome. I really enjoyed working alongside Tony for those three days and felt like we put out really good content.

I’ve been lucky to work this internship for the past two years. It’s been a tremendously fun experience and one that I won’t soon forget. I got to spend three months covering a sport that I love, at beautiful venues across the Philadelphia area, with people that have become friends. I can’t thank everybody at GAP enough for allowing me to come back and work with them. Marty, thank you for allowing me to share an office with you and helping me develop my skills as a writer. Although we joke a lot, I’ve really appreciated the time spent working with you. We’ve spent a lot of time in the cart riding around and it was really a blast. Tony, thank you being a genuinely kind person and helping me with anything that I needed. I’ve learned a lot from you in regards to videos, and really enjoyed the events that we worked together. You’re constant positive attitude is something that I look up to. And Dan, thanks for being a really good friend of mine. Although you were stuck with me for a lot of events, I wanted to thank you for putting up with me. I also want to thank you for helping me out with a lot of different things and treating me as an equal. To all of you, I appreciate the fact that I was treated as a co-worker. I’ve really enjoyed myself and learned a lot throughout my time here. I am thankful to have worked with such dedicated and skilled people.

Thanks to all of the others at GAP who have been so nice and welcoming throughout my time as an intern. Moving forward, I hope to find a job that is anywhere close to what I did here. It’ll be hard to match the experiences that I’ve had, but hopefully with the skills that I have gained and honed here, I will be somewhat as good at my job as all of you. Thank you for making this summer another one to remember.

U.S. Women’s Amateur underway

August 1, 2016
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Jackie Rogowicz birdies No. 18 at Rolling Green.

I roamed Rolling Green Golf Club, site of the 116th U.S. Women’s Amateur, during Round One of the event’s 36-hole stroke play qualifier. Five players with Golf Association of Philadelphia ties qualified for the tournament: Radley Run’s Kate Evanko, Jericho National’s Madelein Herr, Commonwealth National’s Alessandra Liu, Yardley’s Jackie Rogowicz and Tavistock’s Meghan Stasi.

In the morning, Rogowicz, 18, of Yardley, Pa., posted a 1-over-par 72. She started on a sour note: two holes, two bogeys. Rogowicz, a rising sophomore at Penn State University, dropped birdies of five and 10 feet, respectively, on Nos. 5 (par 4, 418 yards) and 8 (par 4, 343 yards) to neutralize the errors.

“Even though the course is still wet, the greens are still pretty fast, and the pins weren’t that easy. You have to stay patient because there are a lot of birdie holes,” she said.

Rogowicz ended on a sweet note: two holes, two birdies. She hit wedges of 93 and 96 yards to four and seven feet, respectively, for birdies on Nos. 17 (par 5, 469 yards) and 18 (par 5, 486 yards).

Rogowicz competed in the U.S. Women’s Amateur in 2014. She lost in a playoff for the final match play spots.

“Obviously I want to make match play, but I think I play better when I don’t have expectations. I try not to set them,” she said.

Rogowicz will tee off at 2:09 p.m. tomorrow. The Round Two schedule is as follows: Evanko, 9:27 a.m.; Herr, 9:16 a.m.; Liu, 12:52 p.m.; Stasi, 7:48 a.m.

I now turn my attention to the Joseph H. Patterson Cup. Final qualifying event is tomorrow at Lu Lu Country Club, Championship proper will take place Thursday-Friday at Huntingdon Valley Country Club. In between, perhaps I’ll have an opportunity to return to Rolling Green.

Madelein Herr is one of five players with GAP ties in the championship.

Madelein Herr is one of five players with GAP ties in the championship.

Harry Hammond Award race update

July 25, 2016

The 2016 Harry Hammond Award race will come to an end at today’s Jock MacKenzie Memorial. Marty McGuckin (right) holds a two-stroke lead over Ron Robinson entering the final leg. Both are paired together at Sandy Run Country Club.

 

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Harry Hammond Award race heats up

July 8, 2016
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Andrew Wallace

 

The Harry Hammond Award race will take a monumental turn next week at Running Deer Golf Club, site of the Christman Cup presented by Global Golf Post. Here’s why.

Nicholas Gianelos leapt to a four-stroke lead with an impressive performance in the 102nd Junior Boys’ Championship Qualifier at Tavistock Country Club. The Radley Run Country Club youngster broke an event scoring record by carding a 7-under-par 65.

However, Gianelos isn’t competing in the Christman Cup, which accounts for two of the four rounds factored into the Harry Hammond Award. Therefore, the lead now shifts to Talamore Country Club’s Ron Robinson and Green Valley Country Club’s Andrew Wallace, who both fired respective 69s in the Junior Boys’ Qualifier. The two are participating in the Christman Cup.

Furthermore, 11 players within five shots of that number are in the Christman field. And a majority can work their way into contention with strong performances at Running Deer.

The buck certainly won’t stop next Thursday.

Ron Robinson

Ron Robinson

Not a Jedi mind trick

May 4, 2016
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It’s been a cloudy, chilly and rainy start to the 2016 tournament season.

May the fourth be with you. Mother Nature certainly hasn’t been with the Association at the start of its 2016 tournament season. Save for Week Two of the BMW GAP Team Matches, cloudy skies, cool temperatures and scattered showers have stolen the spotlight. Rain is also in the forecast for tomorrow’s Francis B. Warner Warner Cup (Gross) at Whitford Country Club.

Unfortunate, yet we’ll press on and hope to get it in, as the saying goes. Same goes for the BMW GAP Team Matches Playoff and Challenges on Saturday.

May is expected to be chock-full of Communications activity. From tournament coverage to magazine work to new Web features such as the 1 MORE campaign and Philling the GAP, we’ll certainly be on our toes. Oh, and next Monday, we’ll welcome Tim Merrick back to our team for the summer ahead. Tim served as our intern a year ago. He will be heavily involved with the J. Wood Platt Caddie Scholarship Trust as well.

May the force be with us this month.

The start of the season

April 8, 2016
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Greate Bay Country Club will host a Middle-Amateur Qualifier tomorrow. 

The Golf Association of Philadelphia’s 2016 season formally began a week ago. Technically speaking, it coincides with the start of active handicap score posting. As a result, activity in the Communications department is akin to that on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Here’s a rundown of the latest:

  • April’s Philling the GAP focuses on handicapping services.
  • The Association launched its 1 MORE campaign, which, as its title suggests, encourages golfers to play one more round, eat one more meal or take one more caddie in 2016.
  • The Golf Association of Philadelphia Magazine’s Spring 2016 issue is finally here! It focuses on the balancing act that today’s woman golfer faces — juggling family, business and the game of golf. Other features include Bala Golf Club’s 115th Anniversary and Players to Watch in 2016, to name a few.
  • It will be a busy weekend in GAP land. The first official event of the season will take place tomorrow at Greate Bay Country Club. Seventy-six players will attempt to qualify for the Middle-Amateur Championship presented by Callaway Golf. Twenty-four hours later, the BMW GAP Team Matches kicks off. The weather forecast isn’t ideal, but our team coverage is. Check out the BMW GAP Team Matches section of the Web site for all of the latest. Good luck to all those competing over the weekend.

Speaking of Greate Bay, I’m reminded of a story I wrote about the club’s goats.

Stay warm. Stay optimistic. The season is here. Enjoy The Masters.

Magazines in motion

March 22, 2016
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Bala Golf Club will be featured in the Spring 2016 edition.

The Communications department is placing the finishing touches on the spring edition of the Golf Association of Philadelphia Magazine. I won’t tease its cover topic and theme here, but I will reveal a nugget or two. Bala Golf Club, a William Flynn design in Philadelphia, Pa., celebrates its 115th anniversary in 2016. The BMW GAP Team Matches is around the corner. And what’s cooking — better yet who’s cooking — at The Masters? Look for the Spring 2016 edition soon.

As we ready one issue of the magazine for distribution, we’re already at work on the next. I will tell you that the summer topic involves locker room lore. Does your club feature a locker room with a unique history? A longtime attendant who’s heard tale after tale from all walks of the membership? A vintage set-up that cries “old school?” Ghost stories that add to the intrigue? We want to throw the region’s coolest locker rooms in the spotlight.

Any suggestions, feel free to let me know. E-mail tregina@gapgolf.org.