Early last week, almost 70 men with a taste for the outdoors, a penchant for wearing polo shirts, and calves of steel descended upon Yorkton.
Golf Saskatchewan's Amateur Men's Championship brought men from across the province, and even some from beyond, to the Deer Park Municipal Golf Course from July 16 to 19.
It takes a lot more than golf clubs and eager young men to pull off a tournament of this caliber. The wheels are in motion as soon as Golf Saskatchewan announces where provincials will be for the following year. The organization is "very well-organized and generally run the tournament themselves," said Deer Park's head professional Al Sauser.
Deer Park is used to hosting provincial tournaments, but this is the most prestigious of them all, he said.
In effect, it is important for the Deer Park's course to look pristine. They start planning about two months in advance. Volunteers are gathered and "the grounds crew certainly put in a lot more man hours right now."
Rain early in the week forced the crew to pump water off the course and put in extra work to keep the course in proper condition.
Golfers had to alter their play to the "lift, clean and place" system due to the excess water. This means that if the ball landed in a moist area, it could be moved up to six inches over to be played out of a drier spot.
Luckily the scores remained similar to those from other tournaments, noted Sauser. Tournaments like this give both the community and the course positive attention, he added.
"When you've got people from all over the province coming here that certainly gives everybody an opportunity to see what Yorkton's all about," he said. "Normally a Saskatoon or Regina player may not come out this way. That's our best advertising, once they go home and say how great the golf course is, that's the best part for us."
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