Royal St. Patrick's Golf Links

                                                                                                                               in Wrightstown, Wisconsin


October 31, 2017

Tales From The Tall Grass 

November 14, 2017

November 28, 2017

October 17, 2017

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A gentleman with Illinois plates pulled into the lot a few weeks ago for a golf outing. My staff, as customary, met this gentleman at his car, greeted him and asked to carry his golf bag. The gentleman obliged and opened his trunk. On top of his golf bag laid a tire, and on his car was his little spare doughnut. The Chicago man went on to say “I was driving up here this morning when I had a breakdown. I pulled over on the highway, then I had to change to my spare, and unfortunately when I get done golfing today, I will need to find somewhere to take this tire or I will never make it back to Chicago.” Dan, my incredible Player Assistant asked for the man’s keys. Many of you know my office overlooks the parking lot, and by golly, I swear I saw Dan drive by in a small black sedan. “Was that Dan?”. With the help of golf course mechanic Eric (aka Fletch), that man’s tire was fixed and back on his car within an hour. Dan returned the gentleman’s keys, and let’s just say he was appreciative. His assessment of what had happened prompted this article, he simply said to Dan “I’m a member at Medinah, no one there would have done that, and you don’t even know me. That was amazing”. I was really proud that day, and that story got a ton of traction inside the event. I know everyone here including myself would do anything for you, but operationally perfect… we are not.   I want to dedicate this “Tale” to the one reader (in 15,000 mind you) who told me a few weeks ago that he hates my emails. I look forward to your criticism of where our service fell short again. For the other 14,999, if you have a great service story, give us a Google Review or EMAIL me and tell it. 


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If the green is too slow and you three putt, you are mad. A green too fast may also leave you mad, when you three putt. A green too big, can also leave you mad when you three putt. How about a green with too many shelves, a green with too big a swale, a green with too many mounds, a green that seems too brown, a green with too big a brow, a green with too much topdressing sand, a green that is too soft, a green with too false a front; all can cause three putts. For some reason all these conditions make you mad. Am I mistaken, it almost seems like you believe you are “entitled” to a two-putt. Why do we feel entitled to a two putt? Is it because hitting the ball through the air is hard, and putting should be easy? I mean two shots to move the dimpled sphere 400 yards, and three shots to get it in the hole from 18 feet. Yikes! Is it because anything more than a two-putt is embarrassing that we feel entitled? Is it the fault of the architect who took our entitlement?  After all, he simply tried to inspire your imagination or test your creativity. Would you have preferred 18 flat circles?  Or how about that know-nothing superintendant, is it his fault we did not get the two-putt? Is there anyone on earth who is blamed more for your three-putts than your local superintendant? Superintendants have even lost their jobs because you took one too many. What about the gimmie, where did that come from? Honestly, do you take the gimmie because your group is trying to maintain a quick pace of play? I didn’t think so. Thanks to the gimmie, golf pros get yelled at less, more rounds get played, and the practice green receives far less compaction. My zen master tells me, “Nick, have no expectations. Once you expect something, how do you process a different result?” There is absolutely no reason on earth why you should “expect” to two-putt. You made that up in your mind, hopefully you can process that, when you get a different result. 

Last summer two high school boys diving off the coast of Pebble Beach Golf Links discovered just how many balls have been hit into Stillwater Cove. With the help of their parents, they reached out to the Pebble Beach Co and the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, and all have agreed to put forth the time and money to “clean up” the remaining balls. While RSPGL is no Pebble Beach, many dimpled spheres have been lost at sea along our fairways. So what happens to them? Each year I am contacted by a company that retrieves them. No divers, just a large rolling machine, that works across a long cable spanning the water hazard connected to a utility cart on each side. Thanks to our nice clay bottom ponds, balls are easy to get! Thanks to 11 lakes, ball hawkers do well here. The deal is standard, 1) I can be paid in golf balls, getting 20% of the haul, or 2) I can be paid in money, getting 5 cents a ball. If I take the balls, I get bags of junk. These balls are cleaned and sorted already. All the Top Flites and Pinnacles I can carry. I often take the money. The balls leave here and go to a cleaning and sorting facility near Milwaukee owned by Mr X. No one ever says what his name is. You never have to worry about your ball ending up in egg cartons at Fleet Farm, Mr. X deals mostly to England. I thought that was weird too. Guess they love resale balls over there. Little story for you…the first two years we were open the ball hawks said RSP ponds were a surlyn gold mine. No shit, right! I decided, being the great business man I am, that I was going to hold out for better deal than used balls or 5 cents. For the next six years I did not let them back into the ponds. Finally in 2011, I let them in. That was a good day, wink, wink. Years later I asked the hawkers about that, and it turns out I am a total fool. See, our ponds are pretty shallow and generally freeze to the bottom. The pressure of the ice pushes the balls deep into the clay. When they picked 6 years later, it was a good day, but the reality is, if they had picked every year, the total haul over those 6 years would have been three times greater. Many of the balls were entombed forever. Now I let them in the ponds every year, my wife keeps telling me I might be overthinking things.

September Edition

Fool's Gold...

Articles From The 

Wandering Mind of 

​Nick Stephens, PGA

Medinah Wouldn't Do That...