Hello FLWGA Members!
Spring has sprung and some COVID restrictions are easing now that vaccines are available. We have a LOT going on in the FLWGA - my apologies for the long message - but want to catch everyone up!
As you all know, we have 4 official play day options - which allows all of our members lots of flexibility on when and what you play! I want to take a moment to talk about our coordinators. For these 4 play days, we have 6 coordinators. These are volunteers who work to ensure the play day runs smoothly and all of us have a great day. But their job is not just to show up on play day and be friendly - they have a lot that they do behind the scenes! Your coordinators are busy handling:
Weekly sign up sheet creation and removal
Coordination with the golf course
Communication to the players
Coordination on play day
These coordinators do a LOT! But sometimes, things must be changed at the last minute due to cancellations, weather, etc. Remember, your coordinators are in charge! They are not trying to make anyone miserable or punish anyone, they are just trying to make the day run as smoothly as possible while handling last minute changes. Please be respectful of these ladies! If they ask you to move groups, then do so without complaint. Cancellations are inevitable, BUT it takes time every week to do the pairings. Last minute cancellations impact the pairings and other golfers, so please be aware of your schedule and cancel prior to the sign up close time if at all possible. If you believe things should be handled differently, volunteer for the job next year and you can do it how you like! Finally, take a minute to THANK your coordinator for the job that she is doing every week so that we can all go out and have some fun!
Our Member / Member tournament was Wednesday, April 7th with 80(!) members participating. The format was a bit different from our normal scrambles - a 2 person team event that was a 6/6/6 format! Fun for everyone to experience a different tournament format. Thanks again to Pat Dunmore and Petra Van der Griend - the tournament chairs. We all had a great time! To see the final results, go to flwga.com. You can see pictures of the day here!
The Wildflower Cup is Wednesday, May 5th. The format is also different from our usual scramble. This tournament splits all participants into two teams - the Sunflowers and the Bluebonnets. Then we have a Solheim Cup type singles match play to determine which team wins! Who will win this year - the Bluebonnets or the Sunflowers? Sign up is now available on the Member Portal.
Exchanges are opportunities to play at other courses in the area - generally, there is one exchange per month. With COVID still around, they are a bit different this year - no lunch afterward, no prizes, no scramble. BUT, it is still a great opportunity to see other golf courses and meet other lady golfers in the area! The first 18 hole Exchange is Tuesday, April 27th at Oak Hollow Golf Course. Nine of our members will be playing at this exchange - unfortunately sign up is now closed. The next exchange is on Wednesday, May 26th at Frisco Lakes! Yes, we will be hosting an exchange. Watch for the announcement of when you can sign up and I hope you will come out and support us in hosting other ladies from around the area. All exchanges are listed on the 2021 calendar.
Golf Course News
The golf course has taken a beating this last year between four carts per foursome and then the unprecedented 10+ days of below freezing weather in February! The maintenance staff is working hard to get the course back in great shape, but this takes time. Please note the following things that are happening:
Aeration - fairways were aerated last week and greens will be aerated ("punched") on May 10th and 11th. So prepare for bumpy / sandy greens on May 12th. This is a must do for all golf courses in the springtime!
The course has designated 5 holes to be cart path only (2, 3, 6, 11, 16) plus the usual par 3's. This is giving these fairways some time to recover a bit without golf carts running all over them. Once these are opened back up, do not be surprised if additional holes are designated cart path only for a period of time.
Effective Monday, April 26th, the golf course will go back to the pre-pandemic policy of only 2 golf carts per foursome. There will not be an option to pay extra to ride as a single. This means even if everyone in the foursome has their own personal cart, only two of those carts will be allowed on the golf course - the other two will need to be parked during the round. It will be up to the foursome - and not the play day coordinators - to figure out who is riding / driving for the round.
New Local Rule #7
Our rules coordinator, Jenny Blackwood, recommended to the board and the board has approved a new local rule regarding bunkers. The rule is as follows:
If a player's ball comes to rest in a footprint/unraked area in a bunker, the player may lift the ball, rake the general area of the footprint/unraked area, and replace the ball as near to the original position as possible without incurring a penalty stroke. If the ball comes to rest in standing water or mud within a bunker, the player may drop in a non-muddy/puddled area within the same bunker - no closer to the hole - without incurring a penalty stroke. If no area in the bunker is mud/puddle free, the player may play the bunker as ground under repair.
You can find all the local rules on page 9 of the 2021 Handbook located on the Member Portal under "Documents".
Watch for information on the following events currently being planned!
What is a Handicap / How to use the System
It's been way too long since I've been able to include this section! Pam Tyndall - our Social Director - is in the process of planning a Summer Pool Social. Watch for details coming out soon!
Annual Holiday Party - Wednesday, December 1st! We are cautiously optimistic that we'll be able to have our Annual Holiday party this year and have booked ballrooms D/E for the celebration. Mark your calendars so you don't miss the event. NOTE: This date is a change from what was on the original calendar!
I have confirmed with the HOA that as we are a chartered club we need to follow the COVID guidelines that the HOA is following whenever we have an "official" FLWGA event - whether it is on HOA property or offsite (like the golf course). This means that we will continue to not have official gatherings inside after any of our tournaments. For any meetings scheduled inside, you will be required to wear a mask and maintain 6' of social distancing. I'm hoping that by fall, these guidelines may relax a bit!
With the new golf course policy of two golf carts per foursome, there will be a lot of discussion among members about vaccination status. The FLWGA CAN NOT ask a member about their vaccination status and CAN NOT require members to be vaccinated. Pairings on play day or in any of our tournaments will not consider vaccination status for those pairings. Each member will have to decide for themself their comfort level in signing up for events knowing they may be paired with someone they prefer not to ride with / play with. We will NOT make last minute changes to pairings merely to accommodate a member's preference - there is way too much work involved in setting up the pairings to have a lot of last minute changes. Also, keep in mind that you may be asked to change pairings at the last minute due to cancellations. If you are moved to a group that you are uncomfortable playing with - merely withdraw from playing that day.
I had a member the other day say to me that this issue is "dividing us" and I understand her concern. Please consider the following:
We are a GOLF association - we are NOT political. Please leave your political viewpoints and opinions at home. I'm sure you can find something a lot more interesting to talk about on the golf course.
I have played with many people over the years that I don't know or aren't comfortable with or don't even like much. You do not have to be friends to play golf together.
It is more fun for the entire group if there is NO DRAMA.
As a group, we have the POWER not to let this divide us - but it will take all of us being gracious and respectful.
And finally, remember:
If you are not comfortable riding with someone who is not vaccinated and that is your only option, then gracefully withdraw for the day and move on.
If someone does not want to ride with you or wears a mask during the round because you are not vaccinated, don't be offended, respect their viewpoint and move on.
For those not involved in the discussion, please stay out of it.
Let's stop questioning each other about why they feel one way or the other - even if you don't mean to, it can feel like an attack. You do not have to understand why someone got vaccinated or didn't, won't ride with some unvaccinated or will - the why is irrelevant!
If someone asks you to give them space, please do so. If someone is backing up from you, then maybe they need space - don't continue to move closer to them!
Please be respectful of all of our members' various comfort levels.
I'm looking forward to the day that I do not have to include this section in my message each month!
If you have heard of any FLWGA member who is under the weather, had surgery, or lost a loved one, please send a note to our Sunshine Coordinator Judy Geary (see member portal for contact info). She will make sure to send them some Sunshine and Warm wishes from the FLWGA.
Our flwga.com website is continuously being updated and refreshed by Vice President Sue Ellis. If you have any suggestions or see any issues (broken links, spelling, etc), please contact Sue (see member portal for contact info).
As always, our Board Meeting Minutes and Financials are available on our FLWGA website (here).
The next FLWGA Board meeting is Wednesday, May 19th, 2pm. Everyone is always welcome to attend. If you plan on attending, please notify me and I'll send you the location information.
If you have any questions or suggestions, drop us a line at email@example.com or contact me (see member portal for contact info).
Hope to see everyone at the Wildflower Cup!
2021 FLWGA President