NAPLES — Mark Durland of Naples Grande Golf Schools was featured in the latest issue of Golf Digest as one of America's Best Young Teachers. Durland, 37, was one of 40 teachers on the list, and one of five from Florida.
Talis Park's John Carroll (Florida State Senior Honoree), Stoneybrook's Jeff Nixon (PGA Player Development) and Fiddlesticks Country Club's Christy Hedrick (Merchandiser of the Year — Private) all have been honored by the section.
In the Golf Digest piece, each of the 40 offers a drill. Here's Durland's, called Easy Does It: Hitting the green with an iron can be a challenge. The tendency is to take too little club and overswing, making it tough to stay balanced and create center-face contact. Work on this drill: Take a 7-iron, and try hitting it half its full distance with a long but soft swing. Next, try to produce a quarter of your normal distance. Finally, see how short you can hit the 7-iron with that long swing. The key is slowing your pace while still achieving a penetrating flight."
There also are comments from some of the 40 teachers on certain topics. Durland's answer was one of those featured on a question of what player they'd like to work with:
"Bubba Watson has never had an instructor, so I'd feel like an artist with a fresh canvas."
Durland can be reached at 784-2208 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Carroll, a PGA Life Member and former director of golf at The Club Pelican Bay, will be honored at the Bobby Goodman Memorial Pro-Am on Thursday at The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club.
"Anytime that you are recognized by your peers to receive an award is a tremendous honor," Carroll said. "Having the opportunity to be in the South Florida Section so long and to see it grow has been a great honor for me."
Carroll has been a PGA member for 39 years, and was at Pelican Bay from 1973-2007. He currently teaches at Talis Park in North Naples, and is the Barron Collier High School boys golf coach.
"When you're involved at such a high level in the Section, you are often out and about, and I owe a huge 'Thank you' to the members (at Pelican Bay) for putting up with me," Carroll said. "The members really made it very comfortable for me to perform all of my duties at the club and as a section member."
Nixon's PGA Player Development award is in recognition of extraordinary and exemplary contributions and achievements in that area, including Growth of the Game leadership. Nixon has won the award five of the last six years, and has served as the Section's Growth of the Game Committee Chairperson since 2006.
"I am extremely overwhelmed and honored to be recognized by my peers for this award," said Nixon, who was previously at Del Tura Country Club in North Fort Myers.
Hedrick, the assistant professional at Fiddlesticks in Fort Myers, has been a PGA member since 2007, and was named the Southwest Chapter's Merchandiser of the Year — Private in 2008.
"I am so proud to represent Fiddlesticks and thrilled to have been chosen as the 2012 South Florida Merchandiser of the Year for Private Facilities," Hedrick said.
Nixon and Hedrick will be recognized at the South Florida PGA Awards Night on Monday, Nov. 12 at The Country Club at Mirasol.
Naples Beach Club Senior Open: The inaugural tournament will be played Friday through Sunday at The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club. This replaces the Florida State Senior Open, which was renamed the Florida Senior Open by the South Florida PGA Section and moved to a rotating annual site.
There will be a $30,000 purse, based on a full field.
Florida Junior Tour: Naples' Matt Leiti tied for eighth at the event at Fountains Country Club in Lake Worth over the weekend. He shot 75-74/149, six strokes behind the winner.
Naples' Anthony Noll shot 78-83/161.
Men's Summer Interclub: The team of Ken Foster (TwinEagles), Rich Thompson (Naples Lakes), Hal Brenner (Spanish Wells) and Peter Brathauer (Heritage Bay) won Flight A, and the team of Don Maricle (Naples Lakes), Joe DeSalvo (Vasari), Bill Murphy (Spanish Wells) and Bruce Brill (Foxfire) won Flight B at The Country Club of Naples on Oct. 12.
The next event is Friday at Foxfire.
Bungartz clinic: Arrowhead instructor Rodney Bungartz has added a Get Golf Ready adult clinic starting Oct. 29. Five Monday sessions will be from 4:45 to 6 p.m., and costs $99 in total. Call 348-5929.
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LPGA Tour's CME Group Titleholders
Info: Nov. 13-18, TwinEagles Club. Weeklong, daily tickets are on sale. Daily, $25 in advance ($30 at the gate), one-day admission Tuesday-Sunday; Weekly, $50 in advance ($60 at the gate), admission Tuesday-Sunday; LPGA Apparel package, $75, weekly ticket plus a $50 voucher to merchandise tent; Titleholders Club ticket, $150 per day, one-day admission Thursday-Sunday, includes suite access on 18th green; Titleholders Package, $1,000, two Titleholders Club Ticket per day, Thursday-Sunday, plus one VIP Parking Pass; For parking, the general public pass is $5 per day ($7 at gate), valid any one day, Thursday-Sunday at Collier County Fairgrounds with complimentary shuttle. Or the on-site VIP parking pass, for $45 per day, valid one day Thursday-Sunday for valet parking at TwinEagles Clubhouse. Volunteer applications were accepted beginning July 16. $65 per person.
Franklin Templeton Shootout
Info: Dec. 5-9, Tiburon Golf Club at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort. Tickets are on sale. Player Pass, includes one weekly grounds pass, 56 golf vouchers for 14 course for a discounted fee, and discounts at PGA Tour Superstore (www.franklintempletonshootout.com/player_pass.php). 18th Green Reserved Seats, $50 per seat Friday and Saturday, $60 per seat Sunday; Teksoft Ventures Collier Club, $80 per day or $195 for a three-day membership Friday through Sunday, includes complimentary beer, wine, soft drinks and snacks; Weekly Grounds Tickets, $75 each, Wednesday through Sunday; Daily Grounds Pass, $20 for pro-am days Dec. 5, 6, $25 for competition days Dec. 7, 8 and 9. Increases $5 at the gate. Children 16 and under will be admitted free with a ticketed adult.
Contact: 888-66-SHARK, www.franklintempletonshootout.com, or visit PGA Tour Superstore or Golf Shop at Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort.
NCH Auxiliaries Golf & Dinner Classic
Info: Thursday, Mustang Country Club at Lely Resort. Registration, 10:30 a.m. Shotgun start, noon. Awards banquet, 5 p.m. Entry fee, $140. Dinner-only, $60. Benefits Outpatient Infusion Services.
Contact: William Murdy 203-935-7189
YMCA golf tournament
Info: Thursday, Hideout Golf Club. Supports free Splash Week, provides swimming instruction for children ages 3-12. Entry fee, $150. Breakfast, lunch.
Contact: Carla Costa 598-5156, email@example.com
CREW Stanley Hole tournament
Info: Friday, Old Corkscrew. Registration, 7:30 a.m. Shotgun start, 8:30 a.m. Entry fee, $100 per player. Hole sponsorship, $500. CREW Land and Water Trust protects the watershed.
Contact: Brenda Brooks 657-2253
Northside Naples Kiwanis Hit'em, Hold'em and Help'em
Info: Jim Dahl golf outing, Saturday, Quail West. Registration, 7:30 a.m. Shotgun start, 8:30 a.m. Lunch, awards follow. Poker tournament, Naples/Fort Myers Greyhound Track, 6 p.m. Entry fee, $150 for each event, or $275 for both. Proceeds benefit the Northside Naples Kiwanis Foundation. Sponsorships available.
St. Matthew's Charity Tournament
Info: Saturday, Valencia Golf & Country Club. Shotgun start, 9 a.m. Entry fee, $65 per player.
Contact: 352-0777, www.valenciagolfandcountryclub.com
East Lee County Boys Basketball Golf Outing
Info: Saturday, River Hall in Alva,. Registration, 7 a.m. Shotgun start, 8:30 a.m. Entry fee, $75. Lunch.
Contact: Justin Woodcox, firstname.lastname@example.org
Miss Southwest Florida Scholarship Fund tournament
Info: Friday, Oct. 26, The Rookery at Fiddler's Creek. Registration, noon. Shotgun start, 1 p.m. Ceremony follows. Entry fee, $75 per person. Ceremony only, $10.
Contact: Richard Droste 572-5117, email@example.com
Info: Saturday, Oct. 27, Fiddler's Creek. Proceeds benefit Seacrest Country Day athletics. Registration/continental breakfast, 7:30 a.m. Shotgun start, 8:30 a.m. Luncheon, awards follow. Sponsorships available from $200 to $10,000. Foursome player package, $750. Individual golfers, $200.
Contact: www.seacrest.org under Support Seacrest tab; Teresa Massa 793-1986
Club Managers Association of America Charity Classic
Info: Oct. 28-29. Benefits Barbara's Friends/The Children's Hospital Cancer Fund. Cocktails, auction Oct. 28 at Grey Oaks, golf tournament Oct. 29, West Bay Club. Golf and gala ticket packages include eight gala tickets and a golf foursome for $1,600. Individual gala tickets, $100.
Wounded Warrior Project tournament
Info: Saturday, Nov. 3, LaPlaya Golf Club. Entry fee, $125. Registration, 7 a.m. Shotgun start, 8:30 a.m. Lunch, prizes, raffle.
Contact: Dale Mullin, firstname.lastname@example.org, charitygolfforwwp.com
Stoneybrook Fall Classic
Info: Oct. 27-28 at Stoneybrook. Revival of event formerly played at Lochmoor Country Club. Entry fee, $100 for two days. Flighted. All winnings paid in pro shop credit. Practice rounds available at reduced rates from Oct. 22-26.
Info: Jim Mapother of RJM Golf and Nick Steinbach of Merrill Lynch will be providing free clinics on Friday mornings from 9 to 10:30 a.m. starting this Friday. First part, short game work; second, full swing. Clinics through May 13 at Lely Resort's Flamingo and Mustang driving range. Registration limited to eight people.
Contact: 208-755-7644 or jim@RJMGolf.com.
Rodney Bungartz lessons
Info: Arrowhead Golf Club instructor has released clinic schedule for October. After School Junior Clinic — Tuesdays, 4 to 5 p.m., $13 per student per session, ages 6 and up; Middle School Junior Clinic — Tuesdays, 5 to 6 p.m., $15 per student per session, ages 12 and up. Contact: 348-5929.
Tiburon Golf Academy
Info: Afterschool programs — Elementary, 4 to 5:30 p.m., Mondays; Middle school, 4:30 to 6 p.m., Wednesdays. Cost, $190 for four-week session. Call 593-1111.
Valencia After School Camp
Info: For ages 7-15 on Tuesdays and Thursdays to Dec. 13. Cost, $150 for entire camp, $10 per day. Call 352-0777 or email email@example.com.
Marriott Military Program
Info: Fairways Fore FREEDom military program. Active, reserve and retired military personnel can get both free and discount golf at over 25 Marriott courses, including The Rookery at Marco in Naples. The program goes through Veterans Day on Monday, Nov. 12. Those providing a valid military ID can receive discount twilight green fees and carts from $29 to $69 while receiving a free replay certificate for another day. The certificates will be valid until Dec. 31. The program is available after 3 p.m. any day of the week.
WCI Experience card
Info: Benefits the WCI Communities Junior Golf Foundation and are for preferred rates from May through October at Tiburón Golf Club in Naples, The Colony in Bonita Springs, and Venetian Golf & River Club in Venice. The card also offers year-round access to Raptor Bay in Bonita Springs, Lost Key in Perdido Key, and Pelican Preserve in Fort Myers. Card is $45, and can be purchased at www.wcigolf.com/experiencecard or at any WCI golf club.
Arrowhead New to Golf League
Info: Thursdays through Oct. 25. Cost, $15. Open to men and women, 18 years and older. Open to public.
Executive Women's Golf Association
Gulfcoast Amateur Golf Association of Florida
Info: Members can participate in individual competitions, couples events, partner events, scrambles, pro-ams, nine-hole "Nine and Dines" plus travel events. Nonmembers are welcome to continue competing in select events with a $25 per event fee. Memberships will be $100 per person per year, and offer benefits such as member discounts at area golf courses, advanced tee times, and restaurant discounts.
Gulf Coast Gold Senior Tour
Info: For golfers 50 and over. Tee times will begin each week in midmorning. The entry deadline is Mondays at 11 a.m. Entry fee, $20 per event, including the rate for golf at each club. Stableford scoring system.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, 458-0754
Quail Run Twilight
Info: The weekly league, which is open to the public, began on May 3. The 9-hole scramble format will be used pairing golfers in A, B, C and D flights. The cost is $25 and includes golf, cart, and prizes.
Contact: Erin Ronsen 261-3930, email@example.com.
Southwest Amateur Series
Info: Men's circuit through the Florida State Golf Association features 36-hole individual competitions, with $130 entry fees.
Info: 18-hole Men's League on Saturdays at 8 a.m.
Contact: 352-0777, www.ValenciaGolfandCountryClub.com
World Golfers Amateur Tour-Southwest Florida
Info: Cost for tour, $189 per year.
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■ APEX Golf — State-of-the-art training studio combining the skills of a golf pro and a physical therapist to improve the body and golf swing. The studio has a high-definition golf simulator, a K-Vest golf swing analyzer, video, and strength and flexibility testing software. APEX offers a free 30-minute analysis of the body and swing. Call 337-2739.
■ Mike Dopslaff Instruction — PGA professional Mike Dopslaff, a four-time Southwest Florida PGA Player of the Year, provides instruction. Individual, group lessons at Stoneybrook Golf Club and Eastwood Golf Club. Call 994-3442, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
■ Rodney Bungartz Lessons — The Arrowhead instructor has released his schedule for June. Summer junior clinic: 9 to 10 a.m., Wednesdays, $13 per student per session, age 6 and up. June 13, 20, 27; Get Golf Ready: Starts June 18, Mondays 8:45 to 10 a.m. Mondays; $99 for six 75-minute sessions. Call 348-5929.
■ Jon Butler Golf at West Bay Beach and Golf Club — Offering 2 and 4 day Golf schools, short game schools, clinics, private lessons and on-course playing lessons. Call 239-821-8447, email@example.com, www.jonbutlergolf.com
■ Mike Calbot International Golf Studio & Triad Golf Schools — At Old Corkscrew Golf Club in Estero. Full and half-day schools are offered. Instructional packages are one, two or three days. All instruction is by appointment only. Private instruction and playing lessons also available. Thirty-five years of instructional experience. Call 482-0900 or visit www.golfdoctorusa.com.
■ John Carroll Lessons — Former Club Pelican Bay professional John Carroll is at Talis Park Golf Club in North Naples. Carroll was at Pelican Bay for 29 years. He is available for instruction Tuesdays through Saturdays. To make an appointment, call 597-3561 or 860-8470.
■ Concierge Service of Naples — An off-site service free of charge to the customer. The service can make tee times year-round at private country clubs in Southwest Florida up to 60 days in advance. The fee is the normal guest rate, and golfers are not required to play with a member. Call 285-7457.
■ Coral Isle Golf Center — Ladies clinics each Tuesday and Wednesday, men’s clinics each Thursday, a mixed clinic each Wednesday at 2 p.m., and a mixed clinic each Saturday. All clinics are at 10 a.m., other than the Wednesday mixed clinic. Junior clinics also are offered from 3:45 p.m.-5 p.m. Wednesdays and 9:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. on Saturdays. Call 732-6900 for more information.
■ The Golf Institute — Club fitting program includes evaluation based on series of tests, including frequency check and lie and loft angle. Putting evaluations also are available. Call 643-5895.
■ Phil Grear instruction — Forest Glen’s Phil Grear is offering the Get Golf Ready program sponsored by the World Golf Foundation. Sessions Tuesday through Friday, 8:30 to 10:15 a.m. Each weekly program is $99 per person. Call 354-1898 or 595-1120.
■ Kim Hilbert Lessons — Windstar on Naples Bay assistant pro Hilbert earned honorable mention as a U.S. Kids Golf Top Kids Teacher. Hilbert is an LPGA teaching professional, and also teaches at Able’s Golf Facility in Dublin, Ohio. Hilbert offers numerous youth programs, including multi-day schools, camps, clinics, private lessons, tournament coaching, and afterschool golf programs. Her programs can be found at www.teachingu2golf.com.
■ John Jacobs Golf School — at Lely Resort. Staffed by local PGA and LPGA professionals. School offers 5-day week and 2-day weekend sessions, plus corporate days and private instruction. Discounted rates for junior golfers. For more information, call 1-800-472-5007 or visit www.jacobsgolf.com.
■ KISS Golf For Women Golf Schools — At Royal Poinciana Country Club. LPGA teaching professionals Lorie McCabe and her staff offer two- and three-day golf schools for women. Private instruction also is available. Call 1-888-451-KISS or 354-3633. The school’s Web site is www.kissgolfforwomen.com.
■ David Leadbetter Golf Academy — At LaPlaya Beach & Golf Club. Leadbetter is a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher. Academy programs include three-day golf schools and players’ schools, and a one-day mini-school. Private instruction and playing lessons also are available. Call 592-1444.
■ Jim Mapother instruction — Call 431-5315 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
■ Mediterra Golf School — Clinic on Friday, March 16 with stack-and-tilt method teachers Andy Plummer and Mike Bennett. The clinic will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and costs $550, which includes lunch in the clubhouse, and will be limited to 10 students; Contact director of instruction Adam Bazalgette at email@example.com or go to www.adambgolf.com.
■ Dennis Meyer’s Golf School — at Quality Inn Suites & Golf Resort in Golden Gate offers two-, three- , and four-day schools. Playing lessons included in full-day golf schools. Half-day options are available as well. Private lessons available. Call 1-800-445-4554 or 267-4652.
■ Naples Golf Academy — Located at the Hibiscus Golf Club. Lauri Travers leads a team of instructors that offers private lessons, golf schools, clinics and playing lessons. Specialty programs geared toward women and beginner golfers are available year-round. Visit us at LearningGolf.com or call 239-732-9944 for more information.
■ Naples Grande Golf Schools — Contact Durland at 784-2208 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
■ Tom Patri Golf School — Tom Patri in New York from May-December. At The Quarry from Dec. 1 through April 15. Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher in America. South Florida Teacher of the Year. Met (NY) PGA Teacher of the Year. Available to all skill levels, and juniors. Private instruction by the hour, half and full day sessions also. Short game specialist. Visit www.tompatri.com, email email@example.com, or call 239-404-7790.
■ Bob Prange Lessons — Estero Country Club at The Vines is the winter home of Prange, who is a teaching professional at The Bridgewater Club in Carmel, Ind. Prange previously has been a head instructor, staff member and golf school coordinator for John Jacobs Golf Schools. He has been 2004 Teacher of the Year in the Indiana PGA Section, and a Top PGA Instructor by Golf Digest and Golf Magazine. Call 267-7003 for appointments and schedules.
■ Tiburon Golf Academy — Offering weekly 90-minute clinics Saturdays at 3 p.m. for $90 per person with a 6:1 student-to-teacher ratio. Clinics alternate between full swing and short game with the first being a full swing clinic. Call 593-1111 for more information.
■ The Rookery at Marco Golf Academy — Includes a 14-acre practice facility. Director of instruction Jan Wivestad. For more information, call 642-2747
To submit an item for the golf column, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or a fax to 263-4816.