Editor's notebook: A very turfy Christmas

Editor's notebook: A very turfy Christmas

Pat Jones describes a few lessons others can learn from our third annual Turfheads Take Over.

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December 17, 2018
Pat Jones
As you’ve probably seen by now, there’s been a lot of interest in our third annual Turfheads Take Over issue. Again, the primary goal of this special edition of the magazine is to highlight personal stories from superintendents and others in the industry. Boy did that happen this year. Why?
 
Given that we just experienced the latest “year from hell,” the social media discussions about stress, anxiety, substance abuse and work-life balanced spilled over into the magazine and became our focus for the issue.
 
Please read this issue, either in print or online. Every bit of it is terrific and often emotional. Here are a few of my personal takeaways from the reactions thus far:
  • Bellerive Country Club’s Carlos Arraya is leaving his mark on our entire industry – but also touching individuals everywhere he goes. He inspired Leasha Schwab (who is pretty remarkable in her own right) to tell her story about working with Carlos at the PGA Championship last summer. Key quote: “This man knows the importance of life and he wants everybody he crosses paths with to learn how to find it, too.”
  • There is life beyond the golf course for even the most passionate turfhead. Our friend Luke McGhee went out on a limb and relocated his talents to the lawn care business. And you know what? He’s happy and rewarded. Key quote: “Skills that you learn on the golf course – attention to detail, general management, membership interaction, responsibility and time management – are all pivotal pieces of operating a business, but now I get to do it for myself rather than a membership or golfer.”
  • Finally, of the many tributes that were paid to the late Steve Wright, Parker Ferren’s personal account of what he learned from him is the one that I hope will stick with you. Parker captured Steve’s sense of joy about EVERYTHING. The guy simply loved life and often captured the moment by saying “we are G2G” or Good To Go. Key quote: “Yes he helped shape MANY great superintendents. But I think the greatest lesson we can learn from his wonderful life is that the dream we all chase in the pursuit of happiness is easier to obtain than we may think. Work hard. Play harder. Love other. Keep it simple and we will all be G2G.” 
I can’t emphasize enough that you should take a little time during your holiday to read the entire issue. There are a dozen more awesome stories from your peers. Make it a very turfy Christmas and maybe you’ll find some inspiration in those stories for a great 2019. 
 
Pat Jones is GCI’s editorial director.