I took Little Blue (that’s my wife’s sky blue convertible VW bug or beetle or some insect) north past Boulder Canyon Country Club to Apple Springs housing development. She and I had driven through the property a few weeks before so I knew well what I would be in for.

The homes and the design of the development is inviting, to say the least. Passing through this neighborhood one has the feeling they are experiencing a well-planned, really nice Black Hills community that features a golf course where water moves throughout the property.

I connected with Mike Short, the owner of Apple Springs previously and settled on a time to meet. Of course I was early, because even though the top was down, I had little Blue in “S” gear and was able to navigate the winding Boulder Canyon road. 

As I knocked on Mike’s front door I wondered how the golf course would fit into the home lot development. It looked to me as a perfect match for both of them. Mike answered the door with a salad bowl in hand saying, “You’re early”. I agreed. Mike Short was a young man to my standards. Nearly all men are in the ‘young man’ status to me. I urged him to finish his salad and we began to talk golf and golf courses.

He shared with me the process of his acquiring the property. Mike and his wife had come to Boulder Canyon like many liked what they saw, the attraction continued and purchased property. At that time a golf course was under construction and home property was being built. The original developer met with complications and the Shorts were able to purchase the land. They had the resourcefulness to start again.

Mike is a businessman. There is no doubt about it. He’s not a golf course guy, he admits that.

This is where good judgment raises its head, this time it was Mike’s head that showed up. Three things occurred snatching big victory from the jaws of not so big victory: He has a neighbor in Boulder Canyon Country Club who turned out to be a very good neighbor, BCC and Mike came to an arraignment where both were satisfied. The club takes possession of and operates the entire golf course as a public facility and Apple Springs has a good golf course neighbor running through its property who can show many years as successful operators in the golf business.

Responsibilities are placed where they should be.

The second stroke of good fortune for Mike was that John Miller, a member of the Professional Golfers’ Association of America, and John’s wife Lisa acquired a summertime home in Apple Springs. John is the Director of Golf at The Reserve Club in Indian Wells, California. The club, like most everything else in the California desert shuts down in the hot months.

Mike said that John, a golf professional, has given much in the way of golf knowledge during the extensive dialogues he shared with the Boulder Canyon Country Club. The intelligence John supplied gave Mike the guidance with which he could make good decisions on matters that were somewhat unfamiliar to him.

The result was the Mike and John team worked well with one another as well as with the third leg of this very effective “milking stool”. Dana Limbo is the President of the BCCC and was instrumental in the establishment of the new nine holes, he is the third leg. Later in another column I will cover my lunch with Dana Limbo.

There is lots to talk about, so keep looking for the, “rest of the story”.

Let’s return to the conclusion of the conversation Mike, John and I had. John was currently a member of the Southern California Section of the PGA and I had been active in that section many years back.

We only hit on one mutual acquaintance when John asked if I knew his wife, Lisa Masters from Huron, SD.

He thought I might as I was raised in Mitchell just fifty miles south of Huron. She had been a student of Hobe Richards. Several outstanding young Huron golfers got their start under the tutelage from Hobe. He is legendary in high school and South Dakota amateur golf circles. 

I climbed into Little Blue and headed out to the highway. Turning right I got to the golf course when a light turned on in my head. Lisa had been involved substantially with The First Tee, I knew her very well.

I remember her as an instructor for people like me working on their First Tee coaching credentials. She now is Head Professional at The Reserve and working for a pretty smart ‘cookie’.

NOBLE ON GOLF INSTRUCTION

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I know it seems like summer, but days are getting a little shorter and golfers should be aware that muscles don’t loosen like they may have when longer days allowed the daytime high reached into the 90’s.

Also, the 8:30 AM tee time will find the air to have just a little chill. Nothing wrong with an early round of golf. A sweater or wind shirt over that lighter garment you just picked up at the golf shop for the fall special of 30% off.

Dress for success! To golfers that means dress so you can swing a club without restriction. Lady golfers always dress properly. Men seldom do, unless a female makes the choice, and oversees the day’s selection.

Dress at the course has come a long way. Often it seems to have regressed. Shorts are the selection of the entire male golfing population. Ladies too, but they look a lot better than men in any sort of clothes.

Perhaps you can remember back in the ‘Ben Hogan days”. In the shoulder seasons – spring and fall – he decide on greys or brown. Shoes were always black or brown and, of course, he wore his signature flat cap in white.

For many years now it is referred to as the “Ben Hogan Cap”. He covered his balding head. I wonder if I could cover my baldness AND play like Mr. Hogan. I won’t worry about that.

Dave Noble, PGA a member of the

Professional Golfers’ Association of America

He can be reached at dnoble@pga.com

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