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Bay Club Junior Golfers Earn Recognition; Collin Fitzpatrick Two-time Player of the Year!

Thursday, 7. December 2017 14:45 | Author:

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Leading the Old Rochester Regional Bulldogs golf team and earning recognition as the “Standard-Times Golfer of the Year” for the second year in a row is Bay Club Junior member, Collin Fitzpatrick.  In addition, Bay Club member, Jason Gamache and Jacob Yeomans were named to the Super Team both for the second time in their careers.  Bay Club Junior member, Alex Henrie was named an All Star as a junior and freshmen and Bay Club Junior member, Alex Wright and Cassidy Yeomans both received Honorable Mention nods in their first year on the team.

The Bay Club, located just down the road from the high school, plays host to the ORR golf team’s home matches and practices.

The team finished their 2017 season with an undefeated 17-0 record, winning the South Coast Conference Championship and qualifying for the Division II South State Finals.  Fitzpatrick, Gamache and Yeomans as senior, tri-captains contributed to a cumulative record of 62-5 over the past three years, including two conference regular season titles and one conference tournament title, a very impressive stretch for the triumvirate.

In his final year at ORR, Collin Fitzpatrick not only upped his golf game, but also took on a larger role as a leader for the team.  “The competitiveness that he brought to the team made his teammates strive to be like him, and that made my other top golfers better, as they were competing in practice to try to beat him whenever they could,” Chris Cabe, ORR coach said about Collin.  “The fire inside is what drove him to be the best golfer he could be.  He excelled when the competition was tough.  He seemed to lock in and welcome the pressure.”

Coach Cabe also mentioned that Collin enjoyed using his knowledge and skill to help some of his younger teammates with various aspects of their game; understanding that being part of a team means everything isn’t about you.  To read more, please click here.

The full list of Super Team members, All Stars and Honorable Mention recipients can be found by clicking here.

Congratulations to all of the recognized players and the entire team for a remarkable season!

 

For more information regarding Bay Club Junior Memberships, please contact Ben Egan at 508-207-9215.

Category:Golf, Junior Activities | Comment (0)

Mushroom Foraging Hike at Dunham Brook Conservation Area in Westport

Tuesday, 5. December 2017 10:16 | Author:

 

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A group of members recently braved the chilly temps and embarked on a unique mushroom foraging hike.  Local mycophile, Garett Stuck led the curious group through the trails of Dunham Brook Conservation Area in Westport, in search of mushrooms.  Participants spent the morning foraging and learning about many variations of mushrooms.  Unfortunately, they were unable to find any edible varieties.  That didn’t stop them from having a great time, however, as they enjoyed many laughs and gained a greater knowledge and appreciation for native mushrooms during the walk.

Many mushrooms are poisonous and potentially dangerous if consumed – please do not eat mushrooms you find in the wild without proper training or an expert with you.

Dunham’s Brook Conservation Area crosses a small meadow before entering an extensive wet forest, a portion of which is on a beautiful boardwalk and provides excellent bird watching.  The trail then rises onto a gentle ridge with both a corn field and oak-holly forests.  One trail spur is maintained through the corn field, creating a very unique summertime trail experience.  The easternmost trail follows near the edge of an extensive forested wetland/vernal pool community that boasts a loud spring chorus of mating frogs.  Pending expansion of DBCA will add another 60 acres and nearly double the size of the trail network.  Creation of DBCA was made possible by generous land gifts from the Julia Krapf family and Susan Bush family as well as the cooperative efforts of the WLCT, the Trustees of Reservations, the Town of Westport’s Community Preservation Fund and the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs.  More information about Wesport Land Conservation Trust can be found by clicking here.

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Category:Cultural Events | Comment (0)

Everybody Plank Now!

Monday, 20. November 2017 15:36 | Author:

This fall, Bay Club Sports and Activities Center Manager and Fitness Trainer, Matt Beatty put together monthly fitness challenges for the membership.  Members are able to complete these challenges in the Fitness Center with oversight by the staff or on their own in the comforts of home.  Each challenge provides a calendar of daily exercises, with occasional “rest” days throughout the month.

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Currently, members and employees are planking away for the November “Planks-giving” challenge.  The purpose is to gradually increase plank times throughout the month culminating with a three-minute hold.  And Matt is keeping the competitive spirit alive with a leaderboard displaying the various times for all participants.  While the calendar is just a guide, especially for a plank newbie, many participants are no stranger to the exercise and have already exceeded that three-minute goal.  Matt suggests that beginners start off slowly and to focus on correct form as opposed to time.  A well-performed plank for a shorter period of time is better than risking injury with improper form for a longer plank.

Done properly, planks are a great exercise for the core. They engage multiple muscle groups simultaneously, help to improve balance and also aid in reducing lower back pain.

Last month, Matt’s Fitness Challenge tested participants’ upper body strength, and with December approaching, members and employees can be sure something interesting is in the works!

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Category:Fitness | Comment (0)

Bay Club Tasting Brings out the Cooks!

Monday, 6. November 2017 14:18 | Author:

Tasting-BlogMembers put themselves to the test in the kitchen last month as they prepared their favorite dishes and shared them with fellow members at the Bay Club Tasting.  This popular event held at the Golf House restaurant drew a record number of chefs who served their treasured dishes.  Each chef earned themselves a coveted Bay Club apron, as well as the approval from the fellow members in attendance.  While this event was “just for fun” with no formal competition, there was plenty of pride eluding from all those adorned in their new aprons.

Members in attendance sampled a wide range of dishes, from breakfast items to soups, and appetizers to desserts.  Some of the prepared foods included Tuna Wontons, Beet Borscht, Fish.  Chowder, Shrimp Mozambique, Tiramisu and more. There was plenty of laughter and delicious food to satisfy all who came out for the event.
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Category:Cultural Events | Comment (0)

The Importance of Golf Course Aerification

Thursday, 12. October 2017 12:15 | Author:

Having a golf course in tip-top shape is one of the most important attributes to a golf club.  While it takes a lot of effort throughout the year to maintain conditions, aerification is one process that’s imperative to ensuring the health of our course throughout the season and off-season.

Why is it so important?

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The main reason golf courses aerify is to alleviate soil compaction, which prevents proper circulation of air, water, and nutrients.  Excess thatch or heavy organic debris buried under the surface of the grass can also starve the roots from essential elements. If the layer of organic matter becomes too thick, it becomes like a sponge and holds water at the surface of the grass after watering.  Too much organic matter also produces soft surfaces prone to ball marks, foot printing and inconsistent playing conditions.

The frequency and type of aeration needed is course specific, based on factors such as soil conditions and requirements, as well as climate/weather.

The Bay Club typically aerifies twice a year, in the spring and fall; and uses a 3-step process:

Step 1: Verticutting

  • Verticutting helps to remove thatch buildup.  Thatch is a layer of dead stems and roots that forms between grass and soil.  Removing the thatch helps turf breathe easier, better absorb nutrients and soak in much needed moisture.

Step 2: Solid Tine Aerification

  • Solid tine makes a hole in the turf but does not extract any material (unlike core aeration which removes small cores from the soil).  This process creates more space in the soil for sand, water, air, and other nutrients which allow for deeper rooting and promotes growth.

Step 3: Top Dressing 

  • A top dressing of sand is then applied, filling the holes to help the soil retain air space and make it easier for roots to grow downward.  Over time, it also reduces thatch, creating a firmer playing surface in addition to amending soil structure and proper drainage.

We have concluded our fall aerification and have already seen positive results on some of the greens that were completed early in the process.

Although it can be a frustrating time for golfers, aerifying is a necessary and beneficial practice to help protect the course and maintain the best possible playing conditions.

Just think of it as a short-term disruption that has long-term benefits for the golf course.

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Category:Golf | Comment (0)

Family Fun at the Bay Club

Thursday, 28. September 2017 12:08 | Author:

Each summer the Bay Club holds a Parent/Child Golf Tournament, with teams made up of a child or grandchild of a club member.  This year’s event was a complete success with a record number of golfers playing in four different age divisions.  Following golf, players enjoyed a BBQ lunch, as well as a mini-golf putting challenge and the chance to hit balls at the 20-foot inflatable named Golfzilla.

However, the highlight of the day was the inspiring and motivational Dennis Walters Show.  During the show, Dennis spoke to spectators, both young and old, about the importance of continuing to follow your dreams, no matter what life hands you.  In 1974, Dennis’ dream of playing on the PGA Tour was crushed after an accident left him paralyzed from the waist down.

In his inspirational show, he wowed the crowd with some amazing golf shots that included hitting a ball with a gavel, his special “3-iron” and an exploding ball that got a thrill from spectators.  He spoke to the group about what changes he had to make in order to allow himself the ability to play golf and demonstrated his specially designed, swiveled seat golf cart.  To read more about the Dennis Walter Golf Show, please click here.

All in all, it was a great family day at the Club.

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Category:Children's Activities, Golf, Uncategorized | Comment (0)

Well-known Shark Expert, Greg Skomal Returns to the Bay Club

Thursday, 14. September 2017 11:47 | Author:

SkomalDr. Greg Skomal, a senior marine fisheries biologist with the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries and director of the Massachusetts Shark Research Program recently returned to the Bay Club to give a lecture on his work with the infamous Great White Shark.

A large crowd of members and their guests gathered to listen to the well-known shark expert speak about some of his most recent projects, with a focus around the latest technologies used to help experts learn about the sharks and their habits.  Dr. Skomal explained that the successful conservation of seals over the past few years has contributed to the population increase in white sharks being spotted in the waters off Cape Cod.  He also noted that the sharks are here to feed on seals, not people.  Cape Cod has become the only known aggregating site for white sharks in the NorthAtlantic and the Massachusetts Shark Research Program has been studying the biology and abundance of this species since 2009.

Being a scientist before the current “age of technology,” Dr. Skomal spent a great deal of time researching deceased animals.   While this was helpful in gathering biological data, such as feeding and growth rate, it didn’t shed any light on their behaviors when they were alive.  With the advent of new technology including satellites and acoustic based equipment, scientists are now able to monitor their actions, such as daily travels and migration habits.  One of his favorite new tools to use is the GoPro camera and he wowed members with multiple videos captured during his quests to tag sharks.   That process includes utilizing a plane in the air to spot the sharks.  Once spotted, the vessel carrying the scientist who is standing on the pulpit with the tagging pole comes up alongside the shark.  Dr. Skomal then strikes at the opportune time,White Shark Curly Skomal inserting a tracking device into the base of the dorsal fin of the great white.

Members raved about the lecture and enjoyed a specially prepared dinner at the Golf House restaurant following the talk which included Grilled Shark.

Dr. Skomal is an accomplished marine biologist, underwater explorer, photographer, aquarist and author.  He has written dozens of scientific research papers and has appeared in a number of film and television documentaries, including programs for National Geographic, Discovery Channel, ESPN, and numerous television networks.   For more information on Dr. Skomal and his work, please click here.

Photo courtesy of The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy

Photo courtesy of The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy

Category:Cultural Events | Comment (0)

The Disappearing Monarchs and How to Help

Tuesday, 15. August 2017 12:41 | Author:

Monarch2The monarch is one of North America’s most known butterflies, with its easily recognizable black, orange and white pattern. The overall population of monarchs has decreased greatly over the years, the reason being the depletion of the milkweed plant.  Milkweed is the only source of food for monarch caterpillars and, due to the loss of habitat from land development and widespread use of weed killers, these plants are becoming more and more scarce.

Why keep the monarchs (and other butterflies) around?

  • Butterflies rank third on the list of top pollinators, behind bees/wasps and flies.  About one third of the food people eat depends on the work of pollinators such as butterflies.
  • Butterflies are an “indicator species” which help to tell us the health of the environment.  Because these creatures are sensitive to changes in climate, the presence of harmful chemicals and pollution, they are great tools to help determine the well-being of our ecosystems.
  • They are important members of the food chain.  Butterflies provide a food source during all stages of their life cycle for animals such as birds, spiders, lizards, small mammals and even other insects.

Many Golf Course Superintendents around the country, including our own Jon O’Connor, are making an effort to keep milkweed on the grounds.  Here, the milkweed is indigenous to the area and Jon and his crew allow it to grow naturally in the fescue areas of the course to help the local monarch population.  In just this year alone, both the caterpillar and butterfly populations have increased.

If you’re interested in helping your local monarch population, here are some steps you can take.

  • Plant Milkweed!  Butterflies need milkweed to lay their eggs and the caterpillars eat only this plant, so the population relies on it 100 percent.  While there are over 100 species of milkweed, only about 30 are used by monarchs.  Click here to find out what to plant in your region.
  • Monarchs constantly feed on nectar from flowers, so plant abundant native flowering plants in your garden.  Many butterflies and native plants have co-evolved over time and depend on each other for reproduction and survival.  Flowers that bloom all summer long will lure more butterflies.
  • Avoid using pesticides in your garden as these kill insects, including butterflies.

As the only Audubon International Silver Certified Sanctuary in Massachusetts, the Bay Club is pleased to provide the resources these creatures need to survive, and hopes to continue increasing the monarch numbers in the years to come.

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Category:Audubon society | Comment (0)

Opening the Golf Course for the Season: What’s Involved?

Wednesday, 29. March 2017 8:42 | Author:

ShortGame

Spring has arrived and Bay Club members are anxiously awaiting the golf course opening for the season.

There are multiple factors that influence the opening of the course.  The main aspect is soil temperature which is, of course, affected by weather.  A mild winter could hint at an early opening, only to be halted and postponed by a late-spring snow cover.  Sound familiar?

The Golf Maintenance team keeps busy during the winter months following the closing of the course in the fall.  Due to fairly mild temperatures this year they were able to address several outdoor projects including burning fescue and brush mowing.

When temperatures keep the crew indoors, they tackle projects such as preventative maintenance and replacing parts on equipment.  They also take care of reconditioning the course accessories.  These include the benches, coolers, bag stands, and tee markers.

Once the soil temperatures begin to rise and the turf starts showing signs of life, the crew will begin cleaning, rolling, and mowing in preparation for opening.

Despite the uncertainty of the “when” (we’re shooting for first full weekend in April beginning Friday the 7th), Bay Club staff is excited to get going on another year of providing the best golfing experience possible.

Category:Uncategorized | Comment (0)

Winter Golf Opportunities

Monday, 23. January 2017 14:28 | Author:

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To the dismay of many locals, golfing in New England is of course not a year-round sport. Harsh winters don’t allow for prime golfing weather.  Even with little snow fall, the cold winter weather makes for horrendous playing greens.

However, members of the Bay Club are still able to get winter golf in by traveling to spectacular tropical locations.

Each February, members along with Bay Club Golf Professionals head to warner temps for the annual Winter Golf School.  Range instruction and on-course coaching aimed at getting ready for the upcoming season are provided.  This year the group will be making their third visit to Turnberry Isle Resort in Adventura, Florida.

In March, members are provided multiple options to take their golf game “on the road.”  Separate Men’s and Women’s trips as well as a Mixed trip are offered. Members can travel with “just the guys” or “just the girls” and enjoy golf as well as great dining.  The Mixed Trip offers the opportunity for couples and friends to get away together.

This year the men will be traveling to the Grand Cypress Resort and the women will venture to Champion’s Gate for the second year in a row, both resorts located in Orlando, FL.   And the Mixed trip will return to the Dominican Republic at Casa de Campo for the second time.

These excursions are a nice opportunity for members to build camaraderie and gear up for the season ahead. It also allows the chance to travel to warmer climates and the platform to play various courses.

Maybe winter in New England isn’t so bad after all! Our members certainly look forward to the golf trips each year.

Category:Golf | Comment (0)

Paddle at the Bay Club

Tuesday, 3. January 2017 13:17 | Author:

img_1647When the fall and winter weather moves in, members of the Bay Club make the shift from the tennis courts to the paddle courts.  Also referred to as platform tennis, paddle is similar to traditional tennis with a few key differences.  The court is on an elevated surface and about a third of the size, surrounded by 12-foot tall rugged fencing to allow for play off the walls.  The racquet used is different as well, a paddle with holes, versus a strung racquet for standard tennis.

We are very excited about the season so far, as many new players have been trying out the sport; coming to weekly drop-ins and tournaments.  Bay Club employee Matt Beatty has stepped into the role of Seasonal Racquets Activities Director to help with anything paddle related, including but not limited to helping members learn the rules and basic play.

We’re looking forward to continued success for the paddle program throughout the winter.

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Category:Paddle Tennis, Tennis | Comment (0)

Santa Visits the Bay Club

Tuesday, 6. December 2016 10:20 | Author:

dscn1150Santa Claus recently made his way to the Bay Club to visit the children during the family-friendly Breakfast with Santa and Gingerbread House Decorating event.

Parents and grandparents brought their little ones to first enjoy Sous Chef Mary Towers’ delicious pancakes with a variety of toppings including fresh fruits, marshmallows, chocolate chips and of course, whipped cream.   Following breakfast, Santa arrived and the children had a chance to sit on his lap and tell him what they want for Christmas.

After the visit with Santa, the children moved on to Gingerbread House Decorating.  The tables were lined with countless varieties of candy and treats to adorn the houses.  Their imaginations ran wild and they had a great time personalizing their houses while tasting some of the candies too.  Parents and grandparents with smaller children enjoyed themselves as well, while helping the little ones design the perfect house.

It was a great time had by all and a perfect start to the holiday season.

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Category:Children's Activities, Cultural Events, Family Events | Comment (0)

Comfort Foods Abound During Casual Wednesdays at the Golf House

Tuesday, 8. November 2016 11:53 | Author:

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As the days grow shorter and the colder, winter weather makes its way to New England, there’s nothing better than a warm, comforting meal with family and friends.  Now in its second season, the Casual Wednesday at the Golf House series provides just that for members in the fall and winter months.

The Food and Beverage team at the Golf House restaurant introduced Casual Wednesday last fall and the events quickly became popular.  Every week features a dinner buffet with a new and fun theme.  New this year, a different weekly themed beverage will be available.

This year kicked off with “Mexican and Margaritas” which included Beef Tacos, Shrimp Fajitas, Chicken Enchiladas and Churros for dessert.   Other themed menus on the schedule this season include Chinese Take-Out with Mai Tais; Burger Bar with Milkshakes; and Luau with fun Tropical Island Oasis drinks.  A particularly fun evening being planned for the children will be Breakfast for Dinner in December.  Following the meal, the Polar Express will be shown while hot cocoa and cookies are served.

Whether members stop in after playing Paddle Tennis or they take the family out for a quick, fun meal during the week, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Category:Dining, Family Events | Comment (0)

Bay Club Sous Chef, Mary Towers and a Trip of a Lifetime

Tuesday, 25. October 2016 10:43 | Author:

reimsBay Club Sous Chef Mary Towers recently embarked on a trip of a lifetime to Paris, France for a week of eating, drinking wine, exploring and expanding her knowledge of the culinary world.  While there, she visited the Champagne Houses of Moet and Chandon in Epernay and G.H. Mumm in Reims.  Mary also spent a day walking in Julia Childs’ footsteps; dining at Le Grand Vefour, the restaurant that inspired Julia’s culinary career, and shopping at her favorite cooking supply shop, E. Dehillerin.

 

grand-vefourMary also had the opportunity to participate in French cooking and pastry making classes, which she loved.  Upon her return, she shared her experiences with members by hosting two different events that featured favorite memories and foods inspired by her journey.  In her French Pastry Class, participants had the opportunity to make fresh baguettes and croissants.   A special French Wine Dinner saw members enjoying a traditional French dinner with multiple, small courses.  Some of the delicacies featured were Croque Madame, Pig Trotters, Sole and Whole Roasted Duck.  There was even a cheese cart wheeled around the dining room.  Dessert highlighted five of Mary’s favorite bites from Paris including Pistachio Macaron, Cauliflower and Chocolate and Pineapple, Cranberry and Coconut Torte.

The French, with their love of food and their dedication to service, truly inspired Mary.  She was thrilled to be able to share her newfound knowledge with members.

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Category:Cooking Class, Cultural Events, Dining | Comment (0)

Gold Medalist Jim Craig Visits Bay Club Children

Tuesday, 4. October 2016 8:43 | Author:

jcraig2Bay Club Member and Olympic Gold Medalist Jim Craig visited the children at Club Seahorse this summer to share with them what it takes to compete for, and earn, the Gold.

Jim earned his medal in Lake Placid at the 1980 Winter Olympics.  As the goalie for the United States hockey team, he helped to lead the team in the unforgettable upset over the Soviet Union.

Jim spoke to the listeners about the importance of having a dream and the determination and willingness to do your best to make that dream come true.  He also reminded the children about the time and effort put in by parents in helping their children reach their goals and to be sure to thank them for their dedication.

Jim approached each and every child to shake their hands and learned their names.  He also posed for a picture with each one individually allowing the child to hold the medal.  All of those who heard his story were fascinated and the timing couldn’t have been better as the visit fell in line with the excitement of the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio.

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Category:Children's Activities, Cultural Events | Comment (0)