Don’t try to tell PGA professional Darrell Eshelman, general manager of Taylors Creek Golf Course, that watching grass grow is boring.
With excitement and anticipation, he’s been watching tifdwarf Bermuda grass grow dense and strong on the Taylors Creek greens.
“I’ve been out there twice a day, every day checking on the greens,” Eshelman said.
The tifdwarf Bermuda replaced 328 Bermuda grass played on for decades — far beyond the expected lifespan of greens. The replacement process began in June, and Eshelman can’t wait to give golfers a chance to check out the new greens.
“We are very excited about the upcoming tournament on Sept. 15 to celebrate the opening of our new greens,” Eshelman said. “We have looked forward to this for so long, we can’t believe that the day is just around the corner. These new greens should offer our golfers extremely good putting surfaces to play on.”
Everyone, including civilians who live in communities in the Fort Stewart area, is welcome to play in what is being billed as the “Big Reveal Golf Tournament.”
Players will find one green not only has a totally new surface, but also a gentler slope.
The back-to-front slope of the No. 17 green has been reduced from about 21 degrees to five or six degrees, Eshelman said. He said the steeper slope was so severe it was unfair to golfers because some putts would roll completely off the green.
Registration is being accepted now for the four-person scramble tournament which will begin at 9 a.m. with a shotgun start. The tourney is sponsored by First Command Financial Services.
The entry fee is $40 per person for Department of Defense ID card holders and $50 for civilian guests. The fee includes range balls, golf cart and prizes. Registration closes Sept. 12.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held at 8:45 a.m. to celebrate the official start of play on the new greens at Taylors Creek, a par 72, 6,544-yard layout with four sets of tees.
Eshelman said the tifdwarf Bermuda grass is still growing. “The grow-in will continue even after we open,” he said. “The greens will continue to fill in and grow more dense through the growing season that will end in late October, depending on weather conditions.”