- played 72 holes of golf
- lost 2 dozen balls in the Wisconsin wilderness
- drove 429 miles
- slept an average of 4 hours a night
- walked 8 miles carrying my own bag at Erin Hills
... and discovered that you can buy live bait from a vending machine in some parts of the state!
And of course, met many wonderful listeners and fans along the way.
Thanks to everybody for helping make my annual trip to Wisconsin absolutely my favorite weekend of the year!
Including... but not limited to....
GM Ann Marie Topel and Sales Manager Jeremy Zuleger from 102.9 The Hog, who made it happen. Thanks for making me feel part of the family.
Jim Reichart from Frontier Airlines. A very nice outfit, that ran the planes on time, and they even have live TV onboard and fresh cookies!
John Ferrito from Lexus of Brookfield. The LS460 loaner was unreal. But next time, let's let me take that $400,000 LFA concept car out for a spin. Not sure where I'll put the golf clubs, but maybe we can get a roof rack for it.
Scott Silvestri from Destination Kohler. He was able to get me on Blackwolf Run - River. And despite the fact the course absolutely tore me up, it's still an incredible woodland gem, like nothing you have ever seen. Go play it. And bring lots of pellets!
Jason Boaz and Stephanie Ashley at Grand Geneva for the golf and accommodations for the B&B Open. What a great resort. Don't sleep on it, Milwaukeeans! You have a gem in your back yard.
Jim Lombardo at Erin Hills GC. The course is absolutely world class now after some needed hole tweaks, and the fairways coming into their own in terms of health. It will shine in two weeks for the US AM, and the US Open in 2017 will be very well deserved.
Dave Bachman at the Bull at Pinehurst Farms for hosting what I hope will be a long running new event, the Bloody Horns Open. Course was amazing, as always, and the tournament ran smooth as butter.
Dave Sanderson at Blue Harbor Resort in Sheboygan. If you are ever making a trip to Kohler for golf, and you just can't swing the budget to stay at the American Club, this is an excellent Plan B. Especially for families with kids, there's a ton of stuff to do besides just the water park.
And of course Gerritt Mack at West Bend CC (man, those green complexes are insane!), Kirk Strong from Smart Interactive Media (loved the fake over-sized winner's check) young John and Tyler for filming and shooting the Bloody Horns, and my main man Eric Gitter for tricking out the "trophy horns", David Stein of Beer Tubes, and everybody else who I may have forgotten.
And now.... let's look at some pictures!
Bob Madden is un-impressed with how "hard" his banging new radio studio appears to the untrained eyeball.
What? Am I supposed to RENT some Toyota Tercel like a hump? Child... please!
Gerritt Mack stripes one home on #18 at West Bend CC.
The severe contours on the green complexes at West Bend were simply incredible, and unique. Never played a course like that in my life!
Of course, the short but dastardly 7th hole at West Bend, ate my freaking lunch to the tune of a smooth snowman (don't ask). I dubbed these the "stairway to hell."
Erin Hills is back to "World Class" status after some needed design tweaks and a few years to grow in the fairways.
Big props to my buddy Mike's girl Janice, who slugged out 36 holes with us, including walking 18 in the afternoon on Saturday. Our caddy, Julius Germany, works at Augusta National in the spring and fall, and will be on Peter Uihline's bag at the US Am.
Coming home in the setting summer sun at Erin Hills is a near religious experience.
You gotta love custom flags! Eric Gitter poses for the one that he took home to his basement. He missed our birdie on #13 though. Doh! (so did I!)
Our winners of the Bloody Horns, Bill Dawson (L) and Dennis Flipse (R). A smooth captain's choice 66 from the 7,435 way-back tees! Impressive!
For a while there, we were "in the mix" to take home solo second place, but a dreaded set of "Horns" on #15 (triple bogey, 4 balls in the water!) did us in!
All in all, a great 4 days of golf!
Despite the unrelenting punishment the game doles out with such gusto!