Congratulations To Our Champion!

Congratulations to our Ozark Turf Association Champion, Tom Russell, Superintendent from Triple Creek Golf Club, is the 2019 OTA Champion. He shot a 73 beating second place finisher, Scott Welsh from Professional Turf Products, who shot a 75. A couple of 76’s were shot by Maron Towse from Schifferdecker Golf Course, who beat Mike Irvine of Bill and Payne Stewart Golf Course on a match of cards. Tom is repeating as champion, winning last year at Millwood. The list of past champions of Clear Creek/Club Car sponsored OTA Championships also include 2017 winner Justin Beck, and 2016 winner, Scott Welsh.

First flight winner was our host, Adam Camp from Hidden Valley Golf Links, with an 80, followed by Jim Pyle from Ledgestone, with an 84.

We did have two threesome go out and play against each other in a scramble format, with the team of Darrell Easley of Windmill Ridge, John Ripperger of Ledgestone, and Wyatt Cantrell from GreensPro winning. We are looking to add this to future Championship events for those that might not want to play their own ball.

We did have 25 attend for lunch with 20 of us waiting out the rain, to challenge the course. Thanks to all that attended. Also thanks to Adam Camp and all the staff for preparing the course, cooking us lunch, and keeping the pro shop open so the winners could exchange their gift certificates.

Much thanks goes to Brian Cheever with Clear Creek Vehicles and Club Car for sponsoring this event, and to Mark Slaughter with GreensPro who sponsored the closest to the pin contests won by Darrell Easley and Mike Irvine.

We will see you next in Branson for our Border War event with the Kansas Chapter!

Congratulations to Steven Story

We would like to congratulate Steven Story, Assistant Golf Course Superintendent at Ozark National at Big Cedar Lodge for completing earlier this year his Golf Course Management Certificate from The Ohio State University, and also The Principles of Golf Course Agronomy (one of the components of the Assistant Superintendent Certificate Series) from GCSAA.

“Certificates like these help Assistants like myself promote and achieve key qualifications needed to reach the next levels in our careers.” “Organizations like the OTA and GCSAA create endless opportunities to learn, grow, and connect in this massive industry.”

GCSAA provides many opportunities for additional education through webinars, that we as superintendents, our assistants, and our equipment managers can take. GCSAA also provides documentation and programs to promote this additional education to our employers. We also strive to provide meaningful education at many of our monthly meetings and our annual education day that is combined with our annual meeting. (We are looking at dates in early January for our annual meeting and education day, once we finalize that date, we will let you know and put it on our calendar).

Congratulations again to Steve, and if anyone is interested in what is available out there, just ask and we will find out for you.

Thanks for reading!


September Meeting - Ozark Turf Association Championships

We are a month out from our next meeting, and thankfully we survived the past few weeks. This should give us plenty of time to get our courses prepared for our fall events, and allow for us to take some time off to attend this meeting/tournament. (And hopefully get some rust off our clubs prior to the event).

Just to let everyone know, the format for this tournament will be stroke play, with the lowest score winning. And for us that are a little more golfing challenged, there will be two flights with prizes.

We want to thank Adam Camp and Hidden Valley Golf Links for hosting this event.

We also want to thank Brian Cheever, Clear Creek Vehicles, and Club Car for sponsoring this event and providing this lovely trophy that I currently have sitting at my house, since that will be the only time I have a golf trophy here. Well except for that long drive one I won back in 1993 when I was younger and took advantage of some hard pan in the left rough, (where most of my drives would end up), and luckily rolling back into the fairway to claim the prize. Many thanks go to the days of single row irrigation for my win.

University of Missouri Field Day

While we did not have a lot of members attend, those that did were treated with updated research information, and had the opportunity to network. Two tour stops that really stood out, (well they all did, but) was Dr. Xi Xong’s billbug in zoysia presentation. While prior research concentrated on identifying the life cycle and the pest itself. This presentation dealt with control, with the best results by spraying insecticides at night when the billbug was active. Another option was to sweep the billbugs up, using a device that is used on artificial sports fields to help sweep up the crumb rubber. The other was some trail work Dr. Lee Miller had done with the just released fungicide Maxtima. It has shown some good results controlling dollarspot without the damage other DMI’s cause in the mid summer.

Thanks to the success of our Scholarship and Research outing, due to all of your support, we were also able to present a $1,000 check to help the University run the research farm. It was much appreciated.

While the date for the next field day is not set yet, rest assured it will take place in 2021.

Also as a reminder, if you have a college attendee either in family or on your crew, don’t forget to submit a scholarship application!



Price Cutter Charity Championship a Success

While players are still on the golf course as I write this, the Price Cutter Charity Championship can still be called a success. Superintendent Jared Brewster and his staff have presented a great golf course. They were also assisted by many Ozark Turf Association members.

Gold Partners Professional Turf Products, GreensPro, VanWall, and Silver Partner, BWI, all provided dinners for the evening work shifts. Steve Simpson with BWI even made his Low Country Boil.

The OTA members who assisted Jared and his crew, included Board Members, Sam Richart, President from Fremont Hills C.C., Mike Irvine, Vice President from Bill and Payne Stewart Golf Course, Mark Slaughter from GreensPro, and Melvin Waldron, Secretary/Treasurer, from Horton Smith Golf Course. Also helping out were Jonathan Prange, superintendent, and Tyler Scroggins assistant, from Holiday Island, Jay Butler, assistant superintendent from Twin Oaks C.C., Joe Mannuci, superintendent from Piney Valley at Ft. Leonard Wood, Dustin Buckner, assistant from Hidden Valley, Juan Barragan, superintendent, and Steven Story, assistant, from Ozark National, Scott Welsh, from Professional Turf Products, Steve Simpson, from BWI, Andy Klein, from VanWall, and Tyler Fishel, from GreensPro, all assist on the golf course. Hopefully I didn’t miss anybody.

Keep an eye for next year’s Korn Ferry Tour schedule so you can make a day or two available to work a shift. I found it a great opportunity for camaraderie and networking.

Congratulations to Chuck Ermisch!

We would like to congratulate Chuck Ermisch, long time OTA member and noted golf course architect, has accepted the Golf Course Superintendent Position at Painted Hills Golf Course in Kansas City Kansas.

Please congratulate him next time you see him at a meeting.

Also please pass along any news you would like to share. We would love to recognize everyone’s achievements!



June Meeting Results

Despite what seemed like the first real day of summer, we had a great turnout for our June OTA meeting held at Twin Hills Country Club in Joplin. We would like to thank our hosts Kris Moore, golf course superintendent, and his assistant, Patrick Johnson. This was the first time we have been to Twin Hills since the second day of the “Border War'“ of 2007.

Our speaker for the meeting was long time OTA member, Casey Koch, golf course superintendent at Crestwood Country Club in nearby Pittsburgh Kansas. Casey has hosted many opening day “Border War” events with the Kansas chapter, (a quick plug, this year the “Border War” will be held at Ledgestone C.C. and Pointe Royale in Branson. It actually brings back some fond memories as the last time Pointe Royale hosted the second day of the event was my first Border War in 2005). Casey talked about the green drainage project they had done on their 9th green. The process was pretty interesting given that it wasn’t a total green renovation. Some good discussions were held about the growing in process of the new seed, as many members talked about seeding issues they have run into during renovations and course improvements. Casey also touched on his efforts to find staff members every season. He does take advantage of Pittsburgh State being there along with getting some high school students.

After a nice lunch of cheeseburgers with all the fixings, salad (for the health conscious, and famous Ott’s dressing, which my family used to take bottles of Ott’s back to Florida, when we used to come up and visit Granny) along with cookies! Teams were assigned and we headed to the golf course. Two teams played a shamble format and 3 teams played there own ball, with the team format being a best ball for the team. The winning team with a 68 took advantage of not only the shamble format, but the local knowledge of long time Twin Hills C.C. superintendent, Jim Weaver (retired) , current superintendent Kris Moore, our speaker Casey Koch, from Crestwood C.C. and Mark Slaughter of Gold Partner, GreensPro. The other shamble team will remain anonymous, but they did finish last, with a 74, so the format wasn’t that much of an advantage. The second place team with a score of 70, also took advantage of local knowledge from Patrick Johnson, assistant superintendent at Twin Hills, and neighbor Maron Towse, superintendent at Schifferdecker G.C. in Joplin, rounding out the team was Chad Hoerschgen, superintendent at Millwood Golf and Racquet Club, and Matt Strong, with Silver Partner VGM. The other two teams finished with 72’s, so a few putts here and there could have lead to a different outcome.

Thanks again to the staff at Twin Hills C.C. for hosting us!

Next on the calendar will be the OTA Championships on September 24, sponsored by Clear Creek Vehicles and Club Car. It will be held at Hidden Valley Golf Course. Make sure to mark your calendar!

Scholarship and Research Outing a Success

After a delay of a week, the scholarship and research outing was held on May 30th at Silo Ridge and Country Club. Despite the delay, and a few teams not being able to play, due to the date change, the day was a great success.

The day started with registration and lunch. I believe new this year was enchiladas added to the Mexican buffet, well they were certainly new on my plate.

As we gathered for our instructions before heading out on the course, President Sam Richart thanked everyone for coming and recognized our 2018-19 scholarship winners. The Karl Anderson Legacy award went to Ms. Haley Johnson, daughter of Steve Johnson, CGCS, the golf course superintendent, (and a past president of the OTA), at Payne’s Valley, Big-Cedar Lodge in Branson. She is attending Mississippi State. Our other scholarship winner was Mr. Caleb Kerr, a staff member at Fremont Hills, where Sam is the golf course superintendent. He finished his school year earning a 4.0 GPA at Missouri State.

The winning team despite missing their captain, host superintendent Ronnie Harman, the Silo Ridge I team took advantage of local knowledge and fired a winning score of 53, (either that or they skipped a hole?). In second place was the team from Gold Partner, Precision Turf, who shot a 56. In third place was Gold Partner, Professional Turf Products with a score of 60. In first flight, the winning team was Osage National with a score of 64. Second place in that flight was Gold Partner VanWall, with a score of 65. In third place, was The Andersons fertilizer, with a score of 66.

Prizes were being handed out fast and furiously, so I don’t have a list of the closest to the pin winners, but, besides the gift cards they received, Paul Carlson from Syngenta donated tickets to a St. Louis Cardinals game, which was won by Woodland Hills Golf Course superintendent, Jon Kindlesparger.

Also this year we had sponsor recognition prizes, which didn’t require any golfing skills. Our hole sponsors gave out $20 gift cards via drawing of raffle tickets. The following sponsors were, Professional Turf Products, Precision Turf, GreensPro, Bayer, VanWall Golf, Knox Fertilizer, Clear Creek Vehicles/Club Car, BASF, Kansas Golf and Turf, Syngenta, The Andersons, Midwest Turf and two gift cards sponsored by NuFarm. A total of $1,600.00 of prizes were handed out. While the final accounting is still to be done, it looks like just over $4,100 dollars were raised through the event, which will cover next year’s scholarship recipients. Thanks to all the participants who made this possible.

Also we would like to recognize and thank BASF, who with their sponsorship of a team in the Scholarship and Research Event, have now become a Gold Partner.

Another big shout out to Superintendent Ronnie Harman, his assistant Shawn Hoffman, their crew, along with Bryan Daniels, Jake Mann and the Pro Shop staff, and with Don Stidham and the restaurant staff, also Kayla, who kept us well hydrated both on the course and back at the bar. Their efforts make this a successful event every year.

Hope to see everyone out next year!


Mother Nature Wins - Scholarship and Research Outing Rescheduled

Mother nature finally got the best of us today May 23rd. It forced us to postpone and reschedule our Scholarship and Research Outing. It has been changed to Thursday May 30th. This is a first for me in my 15+ years in the Ozarks. We have certainly got lucky in previous years.

Nobody was probably more disappointed than host superintendent, Ronnie Harman and his staff. They took advantage of some sunny and windy weather that had dried the course out from heavy rains the night before.

We are looking to get the last laugh next week.



Congratulations to our Karl Anderson Legacy Scholarship Winner

"We would like to congratulate our Karl Anderson Legacy Scholarship winner from the 2018-19 school year, Ms. Haley Johnson. She just finished her Freshman year at Mississippi State, studying International Business and has embarked on a three week international trip to Paris and Stockholm.  We wish her safe travels and an excellent learning experience."

Haley is the daughter of Steve Johnson, CGCS, Golf Course Superintendent at Payne's Valley at Big Cedar Lodge. 

April 30th Meeting Results

So far we’re 2 for 2 vs. the weather people, although the decision to go to a scramble format surely helped us at this meeting. The weather turned rough as our members headed for home. Hoping all made it with little issue.

Our meeting started with a presentation by Derek Nees, Project Manager for Brotcke Well and Pump. It was a great presentation with some good questions asked, we always feel a speaker has been successful when there is good discussions between the speaker and attendees.

We followed that with a pizza bar lunch presented by the Island Green Kitchen Staff. We announced the teams and off we went, honestly hoping to get at least 9 holes in. We did get some showers on the back 9, enough so to put the rain gear on, but it ended quickly, and we finished all 18 just in time. (I think the rain did not want to see my Florida State umbrella).

Winners were, in first place, Team Slaughter, who took advantage of the local knowledge of our host, Toby Burkhart, superintendent at Island Green, the team work of Twin Oaks Superintendent and Assistant, Tye Heidbreder and Jay Butler, Lee Davis, Superintendent from Randel-Hinkle G.C. in Mt. Grove, and team capt. and pro golfer, Mark Slaughter, from one of our Gold Partners, GreensPro. Second place in a tie, (with the tie breaker, handicap holes), the team of Maron Towse, superintendent at Schifferdecker G.C. in Joplin, Barry Siems, professional check casher, and owner of Gold Partner, Precision Turf, Bubby Oliver, retired, and Chad Short, superintendent at Mt. Vernon Municipal G.C. In third place was the team of Russell Cole, turf equipment salesperson with Kansas Golf and Turf (KGT), Jim Pyle, superintendent at Ledgestone C.C., Eugene Jesse, assistant superintendent at Osage National, and OTA president and superintendent at Fremont Hills C.C. Sam Richart. We are seeing some repeat winners, just wondering if we will have to supply them with 1099’s at the end of the year? Thanks to our Gold and Silver Partners who make the meetings affordable and help with the prize fund.

Much thanks to our host Toby Burkart, his assistant Jason Spragg, and all members of the Island Green C.C. team!

Our next meeting with be at Silo Ridge C.C. on May 23rd. It is our Scholarship and Research outing, we will get more details out next week, but start getting your team together!

Thanks for reading!


March 28th Meeting Results

Our meeting at Osage National was a great success, despite the changing and threating weather forecast. We had 28 attendees listen to John Thorman from the Missouri Amateur Golf Association give a presentation on the new rule changes for 2019. Some great discussions occurred from the question and answer session that followed, and I put some of what we learned into practice as I got to take relief from a cart path bordering a hazard, after an errant drive.

We followed that with a nice lunch of BBQ, sides, and too many cookies. Much thanks to the banquet staff at Osage National for that great lunch. Also much thanks to Golf Course Superintendent Jeff Sommerer and his staff for preparing a fun day on the golf course, where the greens were rolling true. Also thanks to the pro shop staff for their help in getting all the gift cards prepared and working out some great deals with golf and prizes.

We also want to extend our thanks to Barry Siems and Precision Turf for donating the closest to the pin prizes, and to all our Gold and Silver Partners for their support in allowing the chapter to keep our dues and meeting cost reasonable.

We had 24 golfers out challenging the course, and now for the winners! The tournament committee came up with a game that pitted lower handicap players to play their own ball, setting them up in three man teams and scoring with their best ball vs. 4 man scramble teams. They reported some close scoring among the groups. In first place, Team Oliver, with long time turf professionals, Bubby and Gary, along with grandson Hunter, and Brad Minnick, CGCS, Irrigation sales with our Gold Partner, Professional Turf Products. In second place, Matt Strong, with VGM, a Silver Partner, Joe Mannuci, Golf Course Superintendent at Piney Valley Golf Course, and they drug Melvin Waldron, CGCS at Horton Smith Golf Course around the golf course. In third place was the team of Jay Butler, Assistant Golf Course Superintendent at Twin Oaks C.C., Kyle Knierim, Assistant Golf Course Superintendent at Highland Springs C.C., Andy Klein, Equipment sales with Gold Sponsor Vanwall Equipment, and Tyler Fishel, with Golf Sponsor GreensPro. Tyler had to leave before they were able to finish, but I have not heard if the team’s performance suffered or improved?

The closest to the pin winners sponsored by Precision Turf were Bubby Oliver, Matt Strong, Brad Seidt, Golf Course Superintendent at Lake Valley Golf and Country Club, and OTA President Sam Richart, Golf Course Superintendent at Fremont Hills Country Club.

A good time was had by all. Don’t forget to mark April 30th on your calendar, when Toby Burkhart will host our next meeting at Island Green Golf Club. Our speaker will be Derek Nees, with Brotcke Well and Pump discussing wells.

Thanks for reading!


March 24th News

Hi all, just want to thank those that have RSVP’s for Thursday’s meeting. We have 21 who have done so. The weather forecast as of this moment, looks great for our meeting, but of course we know that here in the Ozarks, things can change quickly. Sometimes a great forecast will keep many of you back at your courses, preparing for spring. Hopefully since the warm season grasses are not growing yet, you can still find time to attend.

Another note this week, Dr. Lee Miller, from the University of Missouri, has started his Disease Reports, if you are on his emailing list, you will be receiving these already, but if your not, you can find the link to his reports under the Disease Reports tab.

We also want to share, Melvin Waldron, CGCS, just returned from serving on the GCSAA Membership Recruitment and Retention Task Group. While many ideas and topics were discussed, and will be forwarded to the GCSAA Board of Directors, we mention this to encourage our members, who would like to serve their fellow members, of the opportunities that exist, to volunteer for committees and task groups. Some that will even require no traveling, and work is done through conference calls, and go to meeting services. Besides the satisfaction of serving your fellow members, and networking with fellow group members, you will also receive service points that can help you maintain or earn Class A status. We will remind people this fall when the volunteer application process opens again.

One last note, if you, your staff, or your facility has some good news to promote, please feel free to send to us. We would love to share it.

Thanks for reading!


MRR Task Group.jpg

March 28th Meeting Notice

Hello Members,

We are two weeks away from our first golf meeting to be held at Osage National Golf Club, on March 28th.  Jeff Sommerer will be our host superintendent and our speaker will be John Thorman a rules official with the Missouri Amateur Golf Association. 

He will be updating us on the new rules for 2019.  For any of you spending time on social media, this has been a huge topic.  I think a committee of chiropractors came up with the new drop rule, and for anyone playing the course when I’ve changed cups, might want to rethink leaving the flagstick in while putting.

We have requested education points from GCSAA, which I expect to be approved in the very near future. 

Registration will begin at 9:00 AM, our speaker will start at 10:00 AM, lunch will be at 11:00 and golf at noon.  Our format will consist of some sort of team game devised by our tournament committee of Jim Pyle and Maron Towse.

Please RSVP by next Friday March 22nd, you can do that by either emailing us at or calling 417-860-9449, or even text your RSVP to that number, just make a note of who is texting, I don’t have everyone in the phone’s contact list yet.

Cost for members will be $20 and non-members $30.  

Thanks! Mel

2019 Bowling Meeting Results and other news

Hi all,

We first want to thank the 22 members who came out to Enterprise Lanes for our annual bowling meeting.  We had 20 bowlers and 2 observers, who got to observe a variety of bowling skills and styles.  As we mentioned before, we did award prizes!

For the bowler with the best score, Lee Davis, golf course superintendent at Randel-Hinkle Golf Course, City of Mt. Grove. won a $25 gift card to Bass Pro Shops.  Lee rolled a 3-game series total of 502.

We also gave out $25 gift cards to Bass Pro Shops to each member of the team with the highest total score.  Members of that team included Lee Davis, Jeff Sommerer, golf course superintendent at Osage National Golf Resort, Jared Brewster, golf course superintendent at Highland Springs Country Club, and Matt Strong, Director of Membership Development at VGM, a new Silver Partner this year.  We have identified the sandbaggers of this group (or whatever bowlers are called), and most likely they will all be team captains next year. 

On another note, we hope you will visit the website more often, we will look to keep the news tab current with stories like this, which hopefully keeps your email inboxes from getting too clogged with OTA news, and email can be used more for meeting reminders and other pertinent information.  The schedule is updated through the Border War meeting.  We will also update it when we have speakers confirmed for our regular meetings (next one is at Osage National on March 28th).  So, visit it often.  

Also, you will note, we are working on updating our Gold and Silver Partners on the website, their support is what allows us to keep our dues and costs affordable, while giving members the opportunities to network and attend educational sessions.  New this year, if you would like to visit a Partner's website, just click on their logo and a new page will be opened, and you can see what they have to offer.

 For those that have paid their membership dues and/or joined as Partners, much thanks to you all.  For those that have not, hopefully you will send in payment soon.  Most importantly would be for those thinking about Partnerships, we will need time to get the banner, that will be displayed at all our meetings, made.  For regular members, we need to submit our roster to GCSAA by the end of the month, which is required for all affiliated chapters of GCSAA, we would love to have you on that list.  We have attached the invoices and forms, and they can also be found on the website.  Payment can also be made through PayPal on the website.  If mailing a payment, as a reminder, the new address is 4032 W. Sierra Street Battlefield MO 65619-8246  

 In other news, we are attaching a letter from Todd Bohn, Director of Agronomy, at Big Cedar Lodge, asking for volunteers for the "Legends of Golf" event being held at the end of April.  If you are available to spare some time, we encourage you to look into it.  We will also post this on the website.

 Thanks for taking the time to read this letter, and as always, if there is anything the chapter can do, or if you have some suggestions, please don't hesitate to let us know. 




Feb. Bowling Meeting

Thanks for all that attended the bowling meeting!

We had 28 people at the meeting with 22 Bowlers.   They' re some pictures from the meeting on our new facebook group page, if you would like to see what you missed out on.  Also as a reminder the 2017 membership dues date is in less than a 10 days, please get them to me if you have not yet sent something.

Thanks, Happy Spring

Scholarship Recipients for 2016 !

Just wanted to congradulateScholarship Awards recipients for this year

Legacy Award Ricipieant is Matthew Davis. He is the  son of Lee Davis Superintendent of Randle- Hinkle Golf Course Mtn. Grove MO. He is attending CofO at Point Lookout MO pursuing a degree in wildlife management.

Scholars Award Ripieant is Jody Wing. He currently attends CofO and works at Holiday Hills Golf Course going on three years now. He magor is ag business, and has thoughts of pursuing a career in the golf industry as a superintendent after gradution


Scholarship and Research Tour. Update

Last week on Thursday Sept 8, 2016 we host our annual scholarship and research tournament at Silo Ridge C. C. in Bolivar, MO

Good Turn out 18 teams for a total of 72 players for a soggy/rainy day on the course

Big Thank you to Ronnie and Bryan and Silo Staff for Hosting a Great Event!

Winners were Team Vanwall - Barry Siems, Mike Irvine, Scott Welch, and Justin Beck

With your help wee raised a total  $2400 for Scolarships and Research

News: March 23,2016

Yesterday, was our March Meet held @ Rivercut in Springfield MO. A Big Thanks to Dan Kersting and the Rivercut Staff for hosting the event.  We had 25 members in attendance for the meeting, and another special thanks to John Dexter of Dexter Pump Service for Speaking. 20 of us played golf yesterday, the format is 4 man shamble to 2 best ball .  

Winners :

Jim Pyle,Kurt Neuburt .Mike Irvine, Ty Unger

Also: Sam Richart hit a hole in one on #2