San Francisco Supervisors Okay Frogs, Snakes, and Golf at Sharp Park

Frogs, snakes, and golfers all won at Sharp Park Tuesday, March 25, when the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved a small package of endangered species habitat enhancements and golf infrastructure upgrades at the historic, Alister MacKenzie-designed municipal golf course, located in Pacifica, CA. 

By a 7-4 margin, the Supervisors voted to proceed with construction of a new frog breeding pond, native plant restoration area, moving a golf cart path from a wetland, and dredging invasive tulles from an existing stream and pond.  The purpose of these limited measures is to improve frog and snake habitat in and around the wetlands at the San Francisco-owned golf course. 

San Francisco Supervisors Scott Wiener, David Chiu, Maria Cohen, London Breed, Norman Yee, Katy Tang, and Mark Farrell voted to support the Project, while Supervisors John Avalos, David Campos, Jane Kim, and Eric Mar opposed.  In January, 2014 the Project received unanimous support from both the San Francisco Planning and Recreation and Park Commissions.  The future of Sharp Park has been hotly debated here at City Hall since 2009.  Tuesday’s vote was the first time the Supervisors have okayed construction of new habitat and golf improvements at the 82-year-old seaside course. 

Although the habitat restoration work had been approved in advance by the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Army Corps of Engineers, the project was strongly opposed by Wild Equity Institute, a local offshoot of the Tucson-based Center for Biological Diversity.  Wild Equity objected that the project should not go ahead without a lengthy and expensive Environmental Impact Review – even though both the Fish and Wildlife Service and Corps have ordered that the new frog pond be completed by July, 2015, and the other work be at least begun by April, 2017.  The City’s Planning Department advised the Supervisors that an Environmental Impact Review is unnecessary, under the California Environmental Quality Act.  This position was unanimously approved in January by both the Planning and Recreation and Park Commissions.


In 2011, Wild Equity and a handful of activist groups sued San Francisco for alleged Endangered Species Act violations at Sharp Park.  The lawsuit was dismissed in December, 2012 by Federal Judge Susan Illston, who found that golf there does not threaten the existence of the California red-legged frog or the San Francisco garter snake.  She based her Order of Dismissal on the Fish and Wildlife Service’s October, 2012 Sharp Park Biological Opinion, which imposes a long list of conditions -- including construction of the new frog pond and native plant area – upon San Francisco’s golf operations. 

Supporting the Project were representatives from the Sharp Park men’s and women’s golf clubs, Pacifica City Council, Pacifica Historical Society, Western States Golf Association, and SF Dog.  The pro-bono San Francisco Public Golf Alliance cautioned the Supervisors that the extended Environmental Impact Review process sought by Wild Equity would cause the City to default on the Federal Agencies’ time deadlines for the Project, jeopardizing the City’s protection under the Biological Opinion and ultimately leading to revival of Wild Equity’s lawsuit. 

“This is a win for common-sense environmentalism, golf, the local community, and for ordinary citizens who love to use their parks,” commented Public Golf Alliance co-founder Richard Harris, following the vote.  “Wild Equity is not looking for reasonable solutions, but instead wants to eliminate not only golf, but other traditional public uses of the parks.  That’s bad policy, and must be opposed.” 

A Wild Equity spokesperson said the group may now ask the courts to review the Supervisors’ decision. 

A copy of the Public Golf Alliance letter to the Supervisors can be found at: 

CONTACT:  Richard Harris:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Bo Links:    This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Impressive list of Golf Industry Experts will present at 5th annual “Symposium on Affordable Golf” set for March 31 & April 1 at Dairy Creek Golf Course in San Luis Obispo, CA

National Symposium will attract Golfers, Governmental Leaders, in addition to Golf, Water, and Turfcare Industry Professionals

San Luis Obispo, Calif. - The California Central Chapter of the GCSAA will serve as host for the fifth annual Symposium on Affordable Golf (SOAG), March 31 and April 1 at Dairy Creek Golf Course in San Luis Obispo, Calif. The symposium, which is typically held in North Carolina, will take place for the first time on the West Coast, where industry leaders will focus on key topics relating to golf─ playability and the need for affordability, plus the affects of California’s looming issue - water.

In addition to a series of seasoned speakers the symposium will include an on-site Zero Waste Golf tour, daily lunch, an early eve networking reception, and a golf experience at Dairy Creek Golf Course, the newest of three golf facilities operated by San Luis Obispo County Parks.

“What sets this symposium apart from other conferences is that golfers are an integral part of the discussion,” said Symposium Founder Richard Mandell, and President of Richard Mandell Golf Architecture. “Everything we discuss has a direct line to those we serve the most, that is, the golfer.”

Symposium speakers and topics set for Mon. March 31 (day 1) are: If the Demand Isn't There, is Anything Affordable? -Craig Kessler, Southern California Golf Association; Case Study: River Oaks Golf Course in Paso Robles, California -Dick Wilhoit and Wes Wilhoit, Estrella Associates; Breaking Through the Noise: What Does the Golfer Gain from Equipment? -Dick Rugge, Former USGA Sr. Technical Director; Zero Waste Golf Tour -Josh Heptig, Dairy Creek Golf Course and County of San Luis Obispo; Case Study: Univ. of New Mexico North Course, Albuquerque, New Mexico -Andy Staples, Staples Golf; Promoting the Game: Community Buy-In -Ben Hood, Richard Mandell Golf Architecture; The Folly of Replicating Tournament Conditions -Tim Moraghan, ASPIRE Golf Consulting, Bruce Williams, Bruce Williams Golf Consulting, Ted Horton, ValleyCrest Golf Maintenance.

Tues. April 1 (day 2) includes: Returning the Game to Affordability-How Less Can Actually Be More -Richard Mandell, Richard Mandell Golf Architecture; Case Study:  Monarch Dunes Golf Course, Nipomo, California -Tom Elliott, CGCS and Jim DeLaby, PGA, Monarch Dunes GC; Brown is the New Green? Firm and Fast? Or is it Something Else? -Rhett Evans, GCSAA, Mike Huck, Irrigation & Turfgrass Services, Mike McCullough, Monterey Regional Water Pollution Control Agency; and a panel discussion about Customer Service:  What Does the Golfer Really Want? -Richard Mandell, Moderator.

“We are extremely pleased about hosting the symposium at Dairy Greek Golf Course,” said GCSACC President and Event Host Josh Heptig, “we recognize the importance of affordable golf, not just for this generation, but for those who will follow. Whenever multiple organizations from the golf industry come together and collaborate with community leaders and members of the golfing public, there is a high chance that the future of golf will benefit.”

Heptig is hopeful that the symposium will serve as the first of many joint meetings between the six California Chapters of the Golf Course Superintendents Association and the two California-based Sections of the PGA of America. As in past years, members of the PGA, LPGA and GCSAA will earn continuing education credits for attending the symposium.

Representatives from the following golf organizations are also expected to attend: ASGCA, CAG, CGCOA, CMAA, CTLF, GCSAA, NCGA, NCPGA, NCGRA, PWGA, SFPGA, SCGA, SCPGA, USGA, WIGI, and WSCGA.

While there is a $75 registration fee for symposium attendees, the sessions are free for members of the golfing public. However, there will be a reasonable fee for those partaking in lunch and golf.

To register or to learn more visit: or call (559) 298-4853 and/or visit

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Site Contact: Josh Heptig

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(805) 781-1318

Media Contact: Emmy

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Registration Contact: GCSACC

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(559) 298-4853


Golf Industry Leaders Discuss Future of Golf in California

California Alliance for Golf General Assembly Meeting set for Weds. Oct 16 at Southern California PGA Headquarters in Ontario, California 

Sacramento, Calif. -- The California Alliance for Golf (CAG) has scheduled its General Assembly Annual Meeting for noon on Weds. October 16, 2013 at the Southern California PGA headquarters in Ontario, California. The CAG Meeting will focus on topics that relate specifically to the game and business of golf –spanning from pending legislation and water-related issues to player development and growth of the game initiatives. 

Special meeting guest, City of Indio Councilmember Glenn Miller, and a candidate for the California State Senate District 28, will address the CAG membership on timely topics of concern to the golf and turf care industry. 

The General Assembly Meeting will commence with lunch at noon and will adjourn at 1:30 PM. This meeting is open to individuals from all facets of the golf industry: course owners and managers, golf professionals and golf course superintendents, vendors and suppliers, course architects and builders, environmental leaders and members of California golf associations and alliances. 

“As we approach the annual meeting for the California Alliance for Golf, we look forward to discussing issues critical to the golf business,” said CAG President Tom Addis, PGA, “and of utmost concern are issues surrounding water use in California as well as the future of player development opportunities for citizens at the local community level.” 

A CAG Board of Directors meeting will precede the General Assembly Meeting. 

RSVP is required for the General Assembly Meeting and lunch commencing at noon.  RSVP’s can be emailed to:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or via phone at (951) 845-4653. Registration deadline is October 10. The SCPGA is located at 3333 Concours Street Bldg. 2 Suite 2100, Ontario, CA 91764.


Annual Meeting-October 16, Ontario

Mark your calendar now for the 2013 California Alliance for Golf Annual Meeting set for Weds. October 16 at the SCPGA headquarters in Ontario, CA. This meeting is open to all individuals interested in the future of golf in California.

Any questions regarding the meeting or agenda items please contact CAG President Tom Addis at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


California Alliance for Golf Meeting, Thursday May 2, 2013 in Sacramento, CA; Preceded by CGCOA Semi-Annual Education Conference on May 1, 2013


Thurs. May 2, 2013 

Del Paso Country Club

3333 Marconi Avenue Sacramento, CA 95821 

The 2013 California Alliance for Golf (CAG) Board Meeting and General Membership Meeting are scheduled for Thurs. May 2, 2013 at Del Paso Country Club, host site of the 2015 U.S. Senior Open Championship. CAG meetings will be preceded (the day prior) by the CGCOA Meeting and Education Conference which is also scheduled for the Sacramento Region.  Recommended hotel is the Hilton – Sacramento Arden West (at Arden & Highway 80), phone (916) 922-4700.

CAG Meeting  Agenda

8:30 am           Continental Breakfast 

9:00 am           Board  Meeting

Noon Hosted Lunch

1:00 pm             General Membership Meeting

1:00-1:30pm News Conference

  • Review and Approval of Minutes
  • Report from Officers

Finance Report

  • Association Updates
  • Legislative Update
  • Progress Report on Water
  • Introduction of California Economic & Environmental Report
  • Growth of the Game Update

3:00 pm Conclusion 

MSR and CE credits available. Any questions regarding agenda, contact President Tom Addis at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Meeting and lunch are hosted by CAG. RSVP is required for meeting and lunch.  Direct RSVP’s to: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or via phone at (530) 902-8181.  RSVP is due prior to noon on April 24.



Weds. May 1, 2013

Ancil Hoffman Golf Course

6700 Tarshes Drive Carmichael, CA 95608

Knowing what your customer wants and creating a great golf experience that exceeds expectations is the key to a successful golf operation that can compete in today’s tough business climate.  If you want to begin making more money in your golf business, this is one educational program you won’t want to miss. [MSR and CE credits available] 

Hosted by: CGCOA Member Rod Metzler of Empire Golf at Ancil Hoffman Golf Course

Sponsored by: Golf Insurance Services, Target Specialty Products and Greenway Golf

Program Agenda

8:30   am              Registration and Continental Breakfast

9:30   am Opening of Meeting, Recognition of Sponsors and Board/Committee Reports

10:00 am              Educational Program – Moderated by Edward L. Smilow, Esq., PGM

  • Customer Service – the secret to repeat business is a great “above and beyond” experience – what it means and how to implement it. Presented by Harvey Silverman of Pellucid Corporation
  • Smart Hiring – getting an energized workforce – hiring the right people, training them properly and rewarding them for performance.  Presented by Carol Pence of Nor Cal PGA

11:30 am              Break

  • The Tech Tool- customers expect the latest in communication tools and online booking. Learn the latest and what will be expected of you from your customers in the future. Presented by Alex Weber, founder of
  • Making Golf Fun – using your creativity and imagination to develop more participation, distinguish your facility and drive up revenue. Presented by George Kelley of Greenway Golf

12:45 pm End of Program

1:00 pm Hosted Lunch

2:00 pm Golf complimentary courtesy of Empire Golf

6:30 pm Hosted Reception  

Meeting, golf and lunch are hosted. However, RSVP for the meeting, golf and/or both is REQUIRED.  RSVP should be directed to: Emmy at (530) 666-6508 or via e-mail at:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it prior to noon on Wed.  Apr. 24. Recommended hotel is the Hilton – Sacramento Arden West (at Arden & Highway 80), phone (916) 922-4700.

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