Member Update – 1 August
Posted on: 1 August
Our battle with this virus continues. Very sadly every day we are seeing the death toll mount. Our thoughts go out to all those directly impacted by the virus.
The transmission rate has reduced which is a positive as the authorities strive to lower the daily infection rate. The hope is that the mandating of masks will start to have a measurable impact over the next few days.
A sincere thank you to all members for wearing your masks. We understand the challenges, particularly for those battling foggy glasses. We might have to find a prize for the most innovative, stylish design.
Another thank you to all members for working with us as we manage the double challenges of high demand and limited capacity.
We are in unchartered waters and continue to monitor and adapt based on what we’re seeing. The introduction of the 27-hole limit has addressed our waitlist issue, and created an opportunity with spare tee times.
Next week members will be able to request an additional tee time, in excess of the 27 hole maximum, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Email requests can be sent on the day prior up to 3:00pm. The email must include an approximate time of play.
Timesheets will be locked at 3:00pm on the day prior. Any spare times will then be allocated. Members who have been allocated a tee time will be advised by SMS by 5:00pm that day. As timesheets will be locked, any cancellations after 3:00pm must be advised via email or by phone.
Phone bookings for additional golf will only be accepted by phone on the day of play.
Bookings will not be included in My Bookings, but will show when the full timesheet is opened on the website or the VGC App.
Additional bookings made through this process will not count towards a member’s 27-hole limit.
For tomorrow, Sunday 2 August, please call the proshop on 9583-1170 to enquire about availability.
To better support the 27-hole limit we have adjusted the balance of 9- and 18-hole tee time times on the daily timesheets. Members are also strongly encouraged to not book an 18-hole tee time if the intention is to play 9 holes. It is unfair to other members and will count as an 18-hole booking. Please use the 9-hole tick box on the waiting list to indicate desire for a 9-hole tee time that day.
The Pro Shop has been receiving many ‘helpful’ suggestions from members on ways to increase capacity, run the timesheets and a variety of similar topics. We appreciate your passion and interest; however, the Pro Shop team is not in a position to act on suggestions. We have set up a simple process to capture feedback and comments. Please click here for the feedback form. We request that any input on the booking process and playing arrangements be provided through this process, and not taken up with the Pro Shop team.
Takeaway Meals & Friday Night ‘To Go’
The chefs’ great Takeaway Meals continue to be popular with members. The menu changes frequently so check the website or the flyers on display in and around the Spike Bar. This week’s ‘To Go’ special for Friday night features the ever popular ‘Burger Night’. Click here for Dining To Go and Friday Dinner.
We continue to provide around 100 meals to local charities and this week the staff contributed over $900 to cover the cost of the produce. The charities report that they are seeing incredibly sad and difficulty challenges in the community and the support from the club couldn’t come at a more necessary time.
Cellar Wine Specials!
Wine buffs will have noticed that we’ve dug deep into the cellar blowing the dust of some fantastic aged wines and are now offering some of our premium collection to members.
Our main focus is the Iconic Penfolds Winery, from the Coonawarra grown Bin 128, to Bin 150 from the Heartland of the Barossa and some top ranked years of the Iconic multi-vineyard, multi-regional blend of St Henri Shiraz. These wines have been cellared since allocation, and will remain in our cellar until orders are placed for collection.
We have seen more evidence of poor course care. Astonishingly footprints up the face of the front right bunker on the fifth green! No rakes doesn’t give licence to exit a bunker up the bunker face.
Unrepaired pitch marks continue, particularly towards the fronts of greens. Again, we ask that members consider where balls pitch, and make best endeavours to repair damage immediately it occurs. Please carry a pitch repair tool at all times and use any spare time on the green to repair errant pitch marks.
Members may have noticed some brighter green patches of bentgrass on the greens. This is most evident on the 18th green. It occurs where organic matter within the profile releases nitrogen which the plants feed off. These patches will disappear as the turf begins to grow with improved weather and application of fertiliser in Spring.
There are also some areas of couch on the 9th fairway that missed the application of iron and magnesium . This treatment stimulates plant vigour and colour during winter. These areas will present normally once the warmer weather returns and the couch comes out of dormancy.
Golf Victoria Annual General Meeting
Golf Victoria held their Annual General Meeting this week via Zoom. Click here to access the GV Annual Report.
Not surprisingly COVID-19 was a focus of discussion, particularly the role that Golf Australia was playing representing the interests of golfers and clubs with the government and the health authorities. Golf Australia is active, but cautious, recognising that golf is in a better situation than many other sports that have been fully closed down.
Golf Australia’s One Golf initiative whereby all state and territory bodies are to be rolled into a single operation was discussed. Golf NSW and Golf WA have still not joined One Golf which is of concern to all parties. GV is committed to the One Golf concept but recognises for it to achieve its goals it is essential that all bodies sign up.
In response to a question from our President Sue Hosking, GA representatives at the meeting advised that rules nights at a club level would be available soon.
The input from several of the country region delegates highlighted the old adage, ‘there’s always someone worse off’. Many of these clubs have sand scrape greens. For anyone who has played on a sand scrape, an important element is ‘smoothing’ the surface prior to putting. COVID-19 restrictions prohibit the use of the implement normally used to smooth the greens, adding significantly to the challenge of putting on these unique surfaces. Small, country clubs also rely heavily on revenue from their competitions, hosting golfers from neighbouring clubs and regions. Covid-19 has impacted many of these competitions, threatening the viability of clubs. Tough times for our country cousins.
2020 Australian Open postponed
Bad news for Australian Golf and our friends at Kingston Heath. This week Golf Australia announced that the 2020 Australian Open has been postponed. Click for the news release.
Golf Courses, part of a sustainable future
Joe Joyce highlighted this recent article describing the important role that golf courses play supporting a sustainable environment. Click here to read the article.
COVID-19 has presented many and varied challenges for our management and staff. Back in March we had to move swiftly from a fully operational golf club, to one in closedown. The opportunity to progressively re-open came quicker than expected in May, and then suddenly in early July restrictions were re-imposed.
Through the entire time we have benefited with strong leadership from management and committed support from the staff. We have been ahead of the game as regulations have evolved and changed, quickly adapting as circumstances required.
The course has been presented in terrific condition, handling fully daily loads and playing superbly. The team in Golf Operations has performed admirably, at the coal face every day, getting as many members as possible a round of golf. The hospitality staff have been here, exploring ways to present members with innovative offerings, within the rigid constraints of the Covid-19 regulations. The admin and clubhouse staff have been behind the scenes supporting the club’s operations.
All our staff are to be commended for their efforts and commitment to the club and the members.
This week’s member profiles feature Peter Wilson and Helen Craig.
Not for the first time I say these are challenging times. The positive feedback, and expressions of support are much appreciated by myself, the Board, Management and Staff. No one expected this. We couldn’t plan for it, but we continue to focus on doing the best we can for the Club, the Members and the Staff.
Please stay safe. Enjoy the freedoms we have, and hope that the numbers improve so we can again start the process of recovery.