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Episode #6: Golf Course Deep Dive: The "New" Myrtlewood Golf Club 11/18/2019

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A golf course “deep dive” into recent renovations at Myrtlewood Golf Club’s two courses, PineHills and Palmetto. We also discuss the growing trend of golf course upgrades and renovations along South Carolina’s northern coast.


Meredith:            Hey, everyone. Today we did a course deep dive into the recent renovations on Myrtlewood Golf Club’s two courses, Pine Hills and Palmetto. We also discussed the growing trend of course upgrades along the Grand Strand area.

Meredith:            Hey, everyone. Joining me on the show today is Dustin Powers, PGA head golf professional at Myrtlewood Golf Club. And Nate Dewitt, former head golf professional marketing manager for Founders Golf. Well, today, we are going to dive deep into Myrtlewood Golf Club’s recent renovations, and we’re going to talk a little bit about some other courses that have undergone some renovations in the Myrtle Beach area. So Dustin, I’m going to hand the mic over to you because you know a lot about this.

Dustin:                 Do I?

Meredith:            Yeah, I hope so.

Dustin:                 You’re just giving me so much pressure to perform.

Meredith:            Your pressure is on.

Nate:                    You’re better under pressure, though.

Dustin:                 Am I?

Nate:                    Yeah. I think so.

Meredith:            You’re better under pressure, especially when you have to make a 30 foot birdie putt like you did at Grande Dunes Golf Resort Club with me last year.

Dustin:                 That’s just routine.

Meredith:            And you did it in like 30 mile per hour winds, it was like 40 degrees outside.

Dustin:                 Routine.

Nate:                    And on video, that’s the most amazing thing.

Meredith:            Must be nice to have that just happen to you routinely.

Dustin:                 Just gifted with that type of excellence, I guess.

Meredith:            Is that because you are kin to Austin Powers?

Dustin:                 Could be. He’s better at some things, I’m better at others.

Meredith:            What would he be better at?

Dustin:                 Definitely not a three point turn.

Meredith:            All right, Dustin, tell us a little bit about these renovations.

Dustin:                 We’ve been talking about them for awhile, we’ve done a lot recently. So 2018, we redid the greens on Pine Hills. We enlarged them, took them back to their original shape and size, changed the grass to Sunday Bermuda. and then we followed that up in 2019 with doing the same type of renovation on Palmetto, enlarged the greens, changed them to Sunday Bermuda. We also brought in an architect, had him reshape, redesign, all the bunkers. We put a new drainage, new sand. So continuing just to improve on what already is a great product in Myrtlewood.

Meredith:            All right, let’s talk a little bit about this Sunday Bermuda. So for those that are listening, like what is Sunday Bermuda and what is the difference to what you previously had for grass?

Dustin:                 So what we previously had was a very old strain of Bermuda grass, probably one that everyone’s very familiar with playing on, especially in the south. Sunday Bermuda is very new, only a couple of years old. It’s a very small thin blade compared to its predecessor but it’s also more durable. So what that allows us to do is we don’t have to worry about it so much in the extreme heat or the extreme cold, which is more the case for us, the extreme cold. But we can also cut it to a height that allows it to play faster. So the old Bermuda greens had the reputation of kind of being slow. These we can cut, get them real smooth, get them real quick, yet still maintain the durability of it.

Meredith:            All right. Is it greener year-round? Does it change the color of the grass?

Dustin:                 It changes a little bit in the winter, but not too much.

Nate:                    So the big thing is like, this year, it’s Sunday Bermuda. It’ll be something else probably in a couple of years. They change strands so much.

Dustin:                 Oh, the new thing?

Nate:                    It used to be with that grass, used to change every year. This was the latest Bermuda. So it just keeps getting closer to back grass, I think.

Dustin:                 Everything will eventually, I guess with all the people that are a lot smarter than me and the hybrids they keep growing and creating, they just keep creating better grasses. So who knows.

Meredith:            Let’s talk a little bit about the putting greens because I’ve heard just amazing feedback about the greens being a little bit larger now so let’s talk about that.

Nate:                    Yeah. What was cool is Myrtlewood has kept our writer, Ian Garren, busy over the past. Ian, fantastic golf writer, goes out and takes somebody with him to play the golf course that maybe has played it in the past or not. And one of the comments on the Pine Hills Golf Course was saying, even for the higher handicap player, there’s more forgiveness out here it seems like around the greens. Instead of just missing a green a little bit and being on the rough, the greens are bigger. You might not be on the green, but you’re on the fringe now.

Nate:                    And what happens over time, obviously a green shrink. So when you do a major course enhancement project like this, you get the greens back to spec. People that play it really notice it. It’s like, “Wow.” And this really helps higher handicapper, I think.

Dustin:                 Yeah. The, with the greens being bigger, it’s easier to hit. So you’re taking that missed green out of the equation, not all the time, but for a large portion of the time.

Dustin:                 And you’re giving that higher handicapper the ability to put a putter in his hand more often. And if he does miss it, the approaches around Pine Hills, and what is now Palmetto, too, are very forgiving. It’s not so penalizing if you were to miss a green.

Nate:                    See, and Ian also thought, in his writing and his reviews, thought the aesthetics were a lot better at the golf course, too. You’re doing more of the pampas grass in the fairways.

Dustin:                 On Pine Hills, yeah. We’ve added a bunch of natural grass areas. I can’t remember the specific acreage that we added, I want to say it’s 12 or 14. But it gives it more of a natural look. It had that look many years ago, it got taken away at some point in history. We brought that back. So some of the tees that you stand and look out over the mountings, you’ll see natural areas at the lovegrass for the pampas grass or whatever strain it is, but it looks really good.

Nate:                    I think the golf, I guess you’d say, connoisseur or someone like maybe like us, we look at stuff like that. You kind of look at perimeters, you look at things that are being changed. So not only does the putting surfaces improve, but the surroundings look better, things around the cart paths.

Meredith:            And the bunkers as well.

Nate:                    Yeah, that’s cool. I mean, I was at Pine Hills and I’m not normally out there late, but we are out doing some filming. And that course in the evening when the sun is setting, you don’t really notice the hills during the day, but as that sun setting, it’s so awesome out there.

Dustin:                 It’s very good contrast, especially with lighting and different heights of the grasses, it plays. Well, I mean, aesthetically, visually, it’s one of the first things you see when you step on a golf course, is how it looks. So you start adding those things back in and it really changes your perception of it.

Nate:                    And you feel like, when you’re out there, you’ve got a little bit of elevation change, a little bit anyway, some of the holes. So which in Myrtle Beach, we don’t see too much.

Meredith:            Right, yeah, that’s true.

Meredith:            And you being out there all the time, what is your favorite hole? Or what hole do you feel like, based on these renovations, has seen the most changes?

Dustin:                 On Pine Hills?

Meredith:            Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Dustin:                 There’s so many, but one of my favorite holes would be number ten, just because of the green complex itself. It’s not a very long hole so you can attack it two ways off a tee. You can kind of lay back and put a full wedge in your hand or you can get greedy, hit a driver off there and have a, relatively, under a 100 yard shot. But the green is very severely two tiered. We added some perimeter to that, but it’s very undulating and where they put the pin is always a fun place to play, that hole.

Meredith:            Do you have any say in that?

Dustin:                 No.

Nate:                    The golfers always think that you do, though.

Meredith:            Oh, come on. Dustin, he’s looking at the books and like, “Okay, I’m going to play on Thursday. Let’s see.”

Dustin:                 I don’t want any say on where the pin goes, that’s one less thing I get blamed for.

Nate:                    Yeah, yeah. “Superintendent’s in a bad mood today. Where do you put the pin on that hole?” I hear that quite a bit.

Meredith:            Nate, what about you? What are some of your favorite holes?

Nate:                    I actually, I like the last two holes.

Dustin:                 17 and 18.

Nate:                    Yeah, I think they’re fantastic. Because that setting there, those last two holes, the setting is just perfect. I mean, you get water on 17 and then your approach shot on 18 is over water. When you’re on the tee box on 18, the hole is framed well, I think. You see the bunkers there, you can see where you need to hit the ball and then that second shot is great. I mean, a great finishing hole, so yeah, those are my two favorites.

Meredith:            Well, Nate, you and I were out there the other day and every time we go there, I mean, Myrtlewood’s just packed. It’s one of Myrtle Beach’s, probably one of their most played courses because of the location. It’s so central, it’s in the heart of Myrtle Beach. Many people go there because they know they’re going to get really quality golf. Along with these renovations, I’m sure a lot more people are out there now experiencing some of these changes. What are some of the feedback that you get from the golfers playing both the courses that they’ve both been renovated in many areas?

Dustin:                 The feedback has been nothing but positive. The groups that have played many years in the past, haven’t been with us in a while, they have nothing but positive things to say. They can definitely see the changes that we made. And even people who played on a weekly basis, the members, people part of the primetime and honors program. When we are closed, they knew what it looked like before we closed. They played it right after we opened and they were just thrilled with the different changes. The greens being larger, greens being quicker and smoother. They played Palmetto, the playability out of the bunkers is a complete 180, drainage is a complete 180. And even the look, the architect did a great job of how we rolled the hills in the grass into the bunkers, the mounting around it, for it to be a public style golf course in a resort area. It very much has a private look to it now.

Nate:                    So let’s talk about the Palmetto, a little bit more extensive renovation, would you say was done at Palmetto?

Dustin:                 Very much so, yeah.

Nate:                    Bunkering?

Dustin:                 Yeah. The greens are always stressful. But when we did that on Pine Hills, that was kind of a one thing you keep your eye on. When we went to Palmetto and we’re doing that, so you had that stress and then you take on the additional stress of so many more moving parts with renovation crews and architects and drainage and just moving a lot of dirt is very stressful. I know our superintendent, David Hughes, had a pretty rough summer from that standpoint, but he did a great job, the entire crew did a great job and it all paid off.

Nate:                    That’s so hard when you’re doing summer renovate, anytime renovation is hard because you’ve got a target date, you’re going to open. It’s like, “Hey, we’re ready to go.” And then as we all know, summertime, rain, storms and the dreaded H, hurricane. It puts you back. So it’s tough and you want to open the golf course when it’s ready to open. And you take a target date and then all of a sudden it’s like, ah. Kudos to those guys.

Dustin:                 I can’t praise them enough. There were so many days we got heavy rain that they would shape a bunker or the surrounding mounds of that bunker, we get rain that night, they come back, it’s all washed out because there’s no sod on it yet. They just shaped, it’s mud. So they come back in the morning, it’s all washed out. They got to redo what they just did 12 hours ago.

Nate:                    So just take the fact that if you’re at home and you’ve ever laid sod in the summertime, what a job that is. That’s unbelievable.

Dustin:                 It’s excruciating. It’s heavy, it’s hot.

Nate:                    It’s dirty.

Dustin:                 It’s dirty. It’s not like we’re doing a four by four patch in a yard. This was 18 holes of sod, it was a nightmare.

Nate:                    So would you say the bunkers got some, sorry … the bunkers got smaller, the bunkers got larger?

Dustin:                 Some got smaller, some got larger. Some we took out, we added some that weren’t there before. There were some large bunkers that we split into two separate bunkers. It was a really cool process to walk the course with the architect and get his vision on stuff, how he sees things. And how their job is to take a piece of land and transform it into something that best fits the golfer. It’s really cool.

Nate:                    They see something different than we, in the business, see. Don’t they?

Dustin:                 They do. It’s kind of incredible and I learned a lot on how they see things and how he rolls stuff into a bunker. And one of his design features, I guess you could say or specific to him, is he likes to design a bunker if you hold your hand out with your palm up and your fingers facing up, that’s how he kind of likes to design his bunkers. So you can kind of see into it from where you’re hitting into and then it kind of rolls up a face but the grass comes in. It’s really cool.

Nate:                    So you can see it, like a green side bunker, is more visible from the fairway. It kind of gives more definition.

Dustin:                 Fairway bunkers are more … yeah, cause there were a lot of times we went on the hole, I think number two for example, when you’re standing on the tee, you can see a sliver of sand and then it was like, “Oh, it’s not that big.” But when you got out there, the bunker was actually very large.

Dustin:                 So when he came in, he changed all the mounding around it so you could see more of the bunker and seeds presence from the tee instead of just a little sliver of it. And it’s kind of cool.

Meredith:            And I bet it takes is the way that the ball placement is in the sand. I mean, you’re not going to have as many shots on a downhill lie. Those are challenging shots. You have a downhill lie in a bunker, that’s not fun.

Dustin:                 And he also made it more accessible to get in and out of a bunker. Because with that design technique that he does, you always enter from the backside. It’s very flat, you walk right in and you walk right back out.

Meredith:            Exactly.

Nate:                    And from a traffic pattern, less wear. So you’ve got more options to leave, to get in and leave.

Dustin:                 It’s not to strange on the golfers, because we’ve all been that person or seen other people look like a mountain goat trying to get in and out of bunkers using-

Nate:                    Don’t you love it when someone tries to crawl up the face of the bunker, it’s like, “What are you doing?” It’s like, “Don’t do that.” It’s like walk a little bit more.

Dustin:                 You’re not a Billy goat.

Nate:                    Exactly. Walk out the back bunker.

Meredith:            One foot up, one foot down.

Dustin:                 Grabbing a rake.

Meredith:            Jumping down in there.

Nate:                    It’s nuts.

Meredith:            Like where did that person go? It’s so deep.

Dustin:                 Get the incident form on the standby.

Nate:                    Golf course designers are a different breed, because I rode River Club with Tom Jackson. And just like you said, running with him, so this was probably 1999, and of course the golf course opened in ’85. So he was there probably ’84, ’85. And he’s a hands on designer, he remembered where the sprinkler heads, he remembered the issues he had with the hole. And he would sit there and we’d be riding, and he’d say, “Can you stop a minute?” And he goes, “So I remember I wanted this bunker to be like this, but because of the way this tree was, we had to redesign it.”

Nate:                    So there are different breed. I mean, they see a vision. The good course designers see a vision that we wouldn’t see. We would look at it and say, “Dock it left, dock it right.” But they’re given a piece of property and have to work within that property and come out with a home run.

Dustin:                 It’s incredible. And Dan Schlegel, the guy that we brought in to do the renovations, actually worked with Edmund Ault, who was the original designer of Palmetto in ’72. He was on his team back then. So we brought him in and he knew everything from when it was originally done. And it was pretty cool.

Nate:                    He was like an intern or like when he started.

Dustin:                 He was fairly young at that point. And then he came in and did this and it was like, “Oh, yeah, well, Mr. Ault, we did this over here. This was his thoughts over here.” And he kind of took it back a little bit, but put his own signature that he’s developed over the years. So it’s pretty cool.

Nate:                    You had to be like me because I’m sitting there going, “Wow.”

Dustin:                 Half the time I’m like, “What is he talking about?” He’s looking and pointing at stuff. I’m like, “What are you looking at? I don’t understand.” But it all came together.

Meredith:            The mind of an artist.

Nate:                    So that would be cool to get them in a round table and just sit there and listen. It’s like, “Whoa.”

Dustin:                 I would be, at least, very confused. ,But the artist thing, that’s a good point. I mean it’s trying to look at a canvas with Picasso. He’s going to see something that I have no idea what he saw.

Nate:                    But they’re given, like I said, they’re just given a piece of property. It’s not like, “Okay, here’s unlimited amount of property. Go design a golf course.” They have to design it within the realm of what they’re given.

Dustin:                 Natural resources.

Nate:                    You think about that. “And by the way, it’s got to be par 72 and you got to have-

Dustin:                 You add homes in the mix. There’s a certain way it’s got to be done. And then the guidelines and regulations that are in place on you by the state or federal and environmental, and all that.

Nate:                    And on Palmetto’s part, it’s like, “Oh, by the way, the last hole is going to be on the waterway. Figure that one out.” It’s like, yeah, we need to get a hole on a waterway here.

Meredith:            I love that. And that is my favorite hole, by the way.

Dustin:                 That’s a great hole.

Meredith:            Yeah, it’s awesome. I love that hole.

Nate:                    It’s just the view and it’s like, yeah.

Meredith:            You can’t beat it.

Nate:                    You asked favorite holes, but 17, 18 on Pine Hills, 17, 18 on Palmetto-

Dustin:                 Is better. I think they’re the two best holes in the entire property.

Meredith:            Absolutely.

Nate:                    On 17, you do have elevation as you’re hitting down. And then you can see the waterway. And I was going to plug, because Palmetto, people don’t understand double tee, single tee, Palmetto is single tees all the time. So there are 10:00, 11:00 tee times.

Dustin:                 Yeah, they’re the highest sought after times we have that’s available, which is a rarity in Myrtle Beach.

Meredith:            Yeah, it is.

Nate:                    I was on the golf side, it’s like, “Oh, where can we go play at 2:30 or 3:00?” It’s like you can go play at Palmetto. So very few golf courses like that.

Meredith:            Well, let’s talk about a few other courses along the Grand Strand that have undergone renovations. Nate, I know you have a list.

Nate:                    What’s really cool is everyone says, “Well, golf’s in decline.” It’s like but there has been some important or some big course, even clubhouse, enhancement projects at Myrtle Beach over the past few years. Which is cool to see companies reinvesting back into their properties. And what’s even more cool, is if you’re in the marketing side of marketing Myrtle Beach, it gives you something to talk about. Which it’s great and it shows you that golf courses want to get better and they want conditions to be great, obviously to help increase play, but to get people to come back again. So I went through, and our writers, Chris Kang and Ian Garren, have written extensively about these Arcadian shores, course, clubhouse, all complete redesign.

Nate:                    And that you take an already great layout of Arcadian. I think the issue there was always the cart paths were a little rough. Their clubhouse was older. Brand new club house, course has been-

Dustin:                 Brand new.

Nate:                    Yeah. It’s fantastic. Obviously Myrtlewood 2019, the greens and bunkers on Palmetto. 2018, the greens and the aesthetics on Pine Hills. Same time you were doing Pine Hills ,Tradition Club-

Dustin:                 Tradition did their greens the same summer we did Pine Hills, yeah.

Nate:                    The greens, so Saturday Bermuda down there as well, I believe.

Dustin:                 Yup.

Nate:                    River Hills, complete clubhouse renovation this year.

Dustin:                 Yes, earlier this year.

Nate:                    Earlier this year. You got Shaftsbury Glen, also this year, new Sunday Bermuda grass greens, just opened up.

Dustin:                 And they had bent before, right?

Nate:                    Yes. One of the few courses that had bentgrass left.

Dustin:                 If that tells you anything about Sunday Bermuda, they went from bent to Sundays. That’ll tell you a little bit about where that grass is.

Nate:                    Exactly. So I think from a superintendent standpoint, it’s a lot of work to get to Bermuda, but it’s a dream once it’s done right. It’s like you’re not hauling a hose all summer trying to keep back grass alive.

Dustin:                 I worked at a course, let’s see, we changed to Thistle. In 2010 I started, but in 2013 and late in ’12 and ’13, we started green changeover.

Meredith:            Oh, by the way, you and I played some golf in 2013 at Thistle.

Dustin:                 Yes, we did. We played hole number seven MacKay.

Meredith:            I found a picture of us in one of my golf albums other day. I’m like, “Oh, man, we were so young then.”

Dustin:                 I don’t know why that’s in an album. You should probably just put that on the wall.

Meredith:            Because you’re so special to me.

Dustin:                 Well just go ahead and put it on the wall. Don’t just put it with everything else.

Nate:                    That should be your profile picture on Facebook.

Meredith:            You know what, I’m going to do that. All right, so if you go to my Facebook page and you see me and Dustin, he’s so special to me.

Dustin:                 Did you remember the hole until I just told you?

Meredith:            Yes.

Dustin:                 I’ve got a mind like a steel trap.

Meredith:            I remembered. You mentioned it and my brain’s going, “Wait, I played with him.”

Dustin:                 Yeah.

Meredith:            Yeah.

Nate:                    I didn’t realize they were bentgrass there.

Dustin:                 When I got there they were. And like in the summertime I would just watch the agony on the superintendent and the grounds crew.

Meredith:            Did you pull up a chair and just watch it?

Dustin:                 Well, I would sit on the porch of the clubhouse and just watch them hand water greens like two to three times a day.

Nate:                    In 2001, we put A1 bentgrass at River Club. Because that was the timeframe where, A, it’s more heat tolerant. I tell you what, those poor guys, haul a hose all summer long.

Dustin:                 Eight to ten hours a day, their whole job for that day was just drive, hold a hole and hand water and just keep making loops.

Nate:                    So you had to look at it, I mean, we had great greens in the fall. Summertime, depending on the heat, I mean they would get obviously stressed out in the summertime. But fall, winter, fantastic.

Dustin:                 Perfect.

Nate:                    And then they would relax. But I’m sure they looked at us like, “They’re looking at the calendar. Here comes May, it’s coming to June and it’s July. It’s like, ah.

Dustin:                 What’s the humidity level? What’s the high today? Great.

Meredith:            Doing this all day, their arms. It’s like you holding the camera.

Nate:                    The camera, yeah, the Gimbal there.

Nate:                    So that’s why I kind of asked at the top. It’s like, so these strands of Bermuda grass, now they’re trying to, they’re hybrids, they’re trying to get closer to bentgrass and trying to get to that … I mean, obviously back in the day, people like bentgrass because the ball would roll better, roll quicker. Bermuda grass had a big old leafy blade back in the day and it’s so slow. So now these hybrid Bermuda’s now are closer to bentgrass.

Dustin:                 I think the goal is to get the speed, smoothness, softness of bent with the durability of Bermuda. And they’re slowly getting closer to that.

Meredith:            So what do you think the next grass is going to be? I mean, they’re always changing this. I mean, down the road, What could it possibly be? Are they engineering it right now?

Dustin:                 I’m sure they are. You look at the schools like Texas A and M, Clemson is a big one. These agricultural type universities and this is what they do and this is where they excel at. I’m sure they’ve got something.

Meredith:            It’s amazing.

Nate:                    So there’s one on this list that’s been around for a while. Pearl West redid their greens this year as well. Miniverde.

Dustin:                 Yeah. And they had bent, too, right?

Nate:                    I believe.

Dustin:                 One course at the Pearl.

Nate:                    One course had bent? It had to be West.

Dustin:                 And they still might be holding onto it.

Nate:                    Prestwick in 2017, new bunkers, put in a new irrigation system. And then one of the big ones, I think, was an extensive project, was at TPC, in 2018, the Better Billy Bunker System.

Nate:                    And they brought in the Fazio Design Group back to do that. And in talking to Clay down there, I mean we get a ton of rain and it’s like nothing ever happened.

Dustin:                 Oh, a day like today where we’re just getting pounded. He’ll come out tomorrow and he won’t have any sand [inaudible 00:23:00]. That’s a huge thing.

Meredith:            That’s amazing.

Nate:                    So to me, these are all really exciting because it is telling the vacationer golfer that Myrtle Beach, even though golf has been struggling the last few years, it’s a nationwide issue of obviously getting more players to play the game, but Myrtle Beach is reinvesting back into the properties. So it’s like, it’s just not old Myrtle Beach. It’s new, revamped, reloaded Myrtle Beach.

Dustin:                 It’s exciting too because it’s not solely FGI focused, half those courses you listed aren’t even ours. So it’s a collaborative effort from the group in Myrtle Beach to really push it together as a whole.

Nate:                    Yep. And they’re all up and down the Grand Strand. So there’s good options to be able to play a “new golf course”.

Dustin:                 Yeah.

Meredith:            I mean things are continuing to progress. We’re staying on the leading edge. I think that’s great, we’re that golf capital of the world, we need to be on the leading edge of making these changes, making sure our courses are updated. Do we know of any other renovations coming down the pipe?

Nate:                    I don’t know of any other projects right now. Obviously, I’m sure-

Dustin:                 There’s talks about stuff. I don’t think anything is cemented at the moment.

Nate:                    But I’m sure there’ll be bigger and better things to come to. Or not bigger things, but it’s just great when a golf course goes in and says, “You know what, we’re going to close down for a period of time. We’re going to make some changes we’ve always wanted to do.” And the big thing, I think one of the biggest changes to a lot of the golf courses is updating their irrigation system. That’s huge. And like I said, that’s without doing any major construction work, obviously that’s construction. But it’s enhancing your golf course as well by having a new irrigation system.

Dustin:                 Yeah. That’s something that the public really doesn’t view as upgrade, but from an operation standpoint, that is massive to have a new irrigation system.

Nate:                    In the case you just take Palmetto and Pine Hills and even Tradition, just making your greens back to normal size is a huge difference. I mean, that’s a big change for the golfer that’s recognizable, too.

Dustin:                 And if you’re out there walking it and then they paint the lines of where it used to be on the original blueprints and drawings, it is remarkable. Like number three on Palmetto literally doubled in size.

Nate:                    That’s crazy.

Dustin:                 And just over the years of mowing patterns, because you always err on the side of caution, whether it’s a quarter of an inch every time you cut. You don’t get right to that line every time because you’re trying to be careful and not go scalp something. So over the years, these rough lines and fringe lines just encroach. And then you go back 15, 20 years and you’re like, “Wow, the green used to be ten feet that way.” It’s pretty crazy.

Meredith:            It’s kind of like the aging process, isn’t it?

Dustin:                 Yeah.

Meredith:            I mean golf courses do age and we have to keep them youthful.

Dustin:                 My chin didn’t used to be that low.

Nate:                    All of a sudden you’ve got a fairway sprinkle head on your green, right?

Dustin:                 Yeah.

Nate:                    It’s like, I don’t think that was-

Dustin:                 Same for our bunkers, too. He was showing us when he walked around the … because there’s supposed to be a certain like 1% grade over one foot, or the math that they do for that, coming out of a bunker. And some of those were way off, and he was explaining it to us is that every time you hit out of a bunker, a little bit of sand gets thrown out.

Dustin:                 So year over year, that sand builds up, sand promotes growth. So now you’re growing grass on grass. So you had dirt, grass, the sand gets thrown out, now you’ve got another layer of dirt. Then grass grows through that, so it’s like you’re growing grass on grass. It was kind of cool that he explained it that way.

Meredith:            It’s so interesting.

Dustin:                 It really is.

Meredith:            It’s so complex.

Dustin:                 It’s a science. It’s incredible. And the guys doing the work. They had the excavators and the shapers and just how precise they were with this big piece of machinery molding a little knoll into a bunker and how delicate they were with it. It’s incredible to watch those guys do that. I was not trusted with that specific job.

Nate:                    He would let you on the backhoe?

Dustin:                 I did get to carry some sod, but I did not get to do any shaping of anything.

Nate:                    So, cool.

Meredith:            well, anything else you guys would like to add?

Nate:                    No, I just think, like I said, from a marketing standpoint, it’s great to be able to talk about new renovations, send golf writers out to look at the golf course, rate it. And like I said, Ian goes out, and so does Chris, goes out and you can obviously find their content pieces on Myrtle Beach Golf Trips. but they’ll tell you exactly what the golfer’s are saying about it, so they take somebody’s with them and play. So it’s-

Dustin:                 Unbiased.

Nate:                    Yeah. It’s great to have something, like I said, in the marketing, you can talk about a golf course all so much and then it’s all of a sudden it’s like, “Man, you got to try it.” Renovated it, something to talk about. It’s a reason to be excited. So I think it’s great. And to Dustin’s point, I’m going to say, probably in 2020, we’ll see more course renovation projects throughout the Grand Strand, which is great.

Dustin:                 It’s a kind of a friendly competition. One course or a couple of courses start to do it, they start to get a leg up on the other courses. So to stay competitive in the market, you’ve got to do the same thing.

Nate:                    Exactly.

Meredith:            Right. Well, this is exciting.

Meredith:            Well, it’s been fun talking about these recent golf renovations along the Grand Strand. And to our listeners, thanks for tuning in today. And for those of you that have not had the opportunity to check out Myrtlewood Golf Clubs renovations, or maybe any of the other golf courses that we mentioned today, you can go to get the latest updates and the best rates for your next Myrtle Beach golf trip. Dustin, Nate, thanks for joining me on the show today. It’s been very informative, a lot of fun.

Dustin:                 Thank you, Meredith.

Nate:                    Thank you very much.

Meredith:            All right, I’ll see you guys later.

Dustin:                 All right.


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