The winter we were waiting for has finally found us. Now, the question is: How far into spring will the winter last?
Like most of you, I would have liked the winter to be in the normal months like December, January, February and maybe a day or two in March. The potential bad news—according to Terri DeBoer, Meteorologist for WOOD-TV—we could see snow into April. Hopefully this prediction is way off and we’re playing golf in the later part of March or early April.
The good news to report is that there’s a lot of snow on the golf course, but not much ice underneath. As we’ve discussed in the past, ice forming on the greens can be devastating to the health of the turf grass plants. We have very little ice under the snow cover, so the courses should be sitting in great shape leading into spring golf.
If we could write the weather script from here to spring, it would go as follows: Stay below freezing temperatures through the month of February and then start moving into warmer melting type temperatures in early March. Let the snow disappear over a week or two timeframe and start sliding the temperatures up into the 50- and 60-degree range during the day time. At night, stay above freezing and move lows into the mid 40s. By mid-March, day time 60 to 70 degrees and nights staying in the 40- to 50-degree range. We could be open for golf if something similar to this could happen. We aren’t too far away from playing golf in Michigan. Most years, we’re playing golf by April 12 at Egypt Valley—sometimes, we’re golfing in March, like last spring. Let's hope for an early spring!
It’s been a good working winter for our team outdoors. With minimal snow up until February, it has been fairly easy to get around the property to work on different projects, such as bridge repair and tree work. The weather has been so mild that we’ve even been able to power wash our equipment outdoors. The outdoor process saves a lot of time by not having the work inside of our shop and having to spend more time cleaning up the extra mess.
Not being bitterly cold is much easier on the staff members while working outdoors all day long. While that game has changed for a bit, we’ll get caught up on some inside work, being that most of our time has been spent outside. We do have two to three people who are inside working on our equipment every day, and four people who are outside every day up until this week. We will still work partial days outside during the colder weather.
We have our management staff all put together for the upcoming season and are ready to start assembling the hourly seasonal staff. Good news there, as we’ve already received a couple applications from individuals wanting to work on the golf courses this summer. I like that we are seeing some interest this early in the season. Hopefully we have our best luck ever, filling the roster this summer.
Start thinking warm thoughts so we can all enjoy an early spring!
Jeff Holmes, CGCS
Golf Course Manager