With Fall officially here, we hope you are as excited as we are about soon enjoying cooler temperatures with friends and family at the Club, playing golf and tennis and enjoying a full range of programming and activities.
Golf Course Projects Announcement
We are excited to announce several large-scale golf course projects for 2015 that, along with the Marsh Course greens project already scheduled, will greatly enhance your Member playing experience. Our newest multimillion-dollar commitment includes the following projects:
- Marsh Greens reconstruction to TifEagle turf (Summer 2015)
- Island Course greenside bunkers
- Lake Course greenside bunkers
- Range amenities (Kingwood C.C., Deerwood Club and Golf Advantage School)
- Course amenities (tee signage, tee markers, ball washers, etc.) for Island, Lake and Marsh Courses
- Additional cart path repairs
- Additional bulkhead removal
We are currently finalizing project details and timelines with our contractors and look forward to getting started as soon as possible. We will keep you posted on project details and progress along the way.
Forest Course Reopening and Other Course Projects Currently Underway
Thank you for the overwhelmingly positive response to the recent Forest Course reopening. As with all new greens, grow-in will continue for many weeks and will take a full season to fully mature. Jay Abbott, Director of Golf Course Maintenance, and his crew are continuing to work on course details which include sodding several non-greens areas that are not filling in fast enough on their own along with adding in additional irrigation to maintain these areas. Over the next several weeks, we have truckloads of sod being delivered so our team may address the weak areas between the cart paths and fairways on both the Island and Lake Courses. Additionally, our team has been working with contractors to trim and remove dead and dying trees around the Club. Lastly, Member feedback about the intermediate rough-cut and walk paths on the Forest Course has led us to introduce them to the other courses, starting with the Island Course.
Please be on the lookout for weekly course updates from Jay Abbott, Director of Golf Course Maintenance, that are included with the weekly broadcast emails from Darrell Fuston, Director of Golf. We want you to feel good about our communication, and we welcome any feedback or suggestions.Thank you for your ongoing support of the Club. As always, if you have any questions or feedback about what is happening at your Club, please feel free to contact myself or anyone on our leadership team.
I hope to see you at the Club soon,
Serving since 2010
We are very proud of our 2014 Kingwood All-Stars who represent TEAM TEXAS prevailed at the beautiful Oklahoma City Golf & CC this past weekend! We will work hard and represent one of eight teams across the nation who will play for the National Championship in Atlanta in late October!
Below please find some pictures, videos & a fun post by Gary Tolbert our Kingwood, MGA Junior Golf Committee! He is our biggest fan and we are happy to have the support of the MGA & our wonderful club that brought us together, the Clubs of Kingwood!
We will keep "Y'ALL" posted on Nationals! And yes the silly cowboy hat from our successful 2012 cinderella season that made it on national TV in May 2013 was our good luck charm at OKC. Okay maybe not.....our team this year are some fighters! The competitions against Little Rock & St. Louis were tough, but our All-Stars form KW battled it until the end! Ya'll are amazing TEAM KINGWOOD (players, parents, MGA, KWCC, junior golfers and friends). We are so privileged and thankful to be a part of all the fun!
Coach Aurora Kirchner-McClain, PGA & LPGACoach Lori Tatum, LPGA
Dateline Oklahoma City Golf and Country Club September 21, 2014I was privileged to witness the following......Kingwood's PGA Junior League All Star Team was victorious at the regional competition in Oklahoma City besting teams from Colorado, Arkansas, and Missouri. They beat Colorado 11-1, Arkansas 6.5-5.5, and Missouri 8.5-3.5. The powerful Kingwood Allstars how travel to TPC Sugarloaf in Duluth, Georgia October 24, 25, and 26 to compete in the national finals. The Kingwood MGA congratulates the team and wishes them well in the finals.
-Gary Tolbert, MGA Junior Golf Chmn.
Click here for our Shutterfly pictures from the tournament!
Shutterfly video links: I'm sorry the coverage is not great, but it will give you a taste of the Regional fun we had at OKC!http://share.shutterfly.com/share/received/welcome.sfly?fid=008068c17cfc6bff2a944dfefaeb216b&sid=3AbtG7Jo0cPwAhttp://share.shutterfly.com/share/received/welcome.sfly?fid=2e71365d648ae96dbcfd7207a7b1fe91&sid=3AbtG7Jo0cPpg
In New York, on Monday, Aug. 25, our Director of Tennis, Randy Mattingley, was honored with the 2014 Alex Gordon Award for the Professional of the Year by the United States Professional Tennis Association during the annual awards ceremony at the Tennis Teachers Conference.
The professional of the year is judged by their contributions to USPTA and USTA; as a teaching professional, player and coach; education, research and publications; organizational affiliations; and contributions to the community.
Randy is a USPTA Master Professional with nearly 40 years of tennis experience and has made significant contributions to USPTA and USTA throughout his career. He served on the USPTA Executive Committee for 18 years and held several positions on the USPTA National Board of Directors, national committees and the USPTA Texas Division Board of Directors. This is his SECOND time to win the USPTA Texas Professional of the Year, having first won in 1994 and again this year.
He has also been heavily involved in the junior and adult USPTA leagues. From 1999-2010, he was the USPTA Junior Circuit Coordinator in Lubbock, Texas, hosting multiple tournaments every year. Randy has been a USPTA Adult League Coordinator in various areas of Texas since 1990, including Fort Worth, Lubbock, North Houston and Kingwood.
Throughout his career, Mattingley has shared his expertise by speaking at more than 40 regional and national conventions since 1987. He also sponsored and mentored at least 20 new USPTA members between 1984 and 2012.
Randy has also helped his community through tennis by hosting tennis tournaments and fundraisers benefiting numerous charities, including the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Martina Youth Foundation, Special Olympics and the Kidney Foundation, raising nearly $150,000 for the organizations.
Mattingley has been a USPTA-certified Professional for 35 years, and has been the Director of Tennis at The Clubs of Kingwood in Kingwood, Texas, since 2008. A graduate of Houston Baptist University, he received a bachelor's degree in business management and recreation leadership. In 2003, Randy received his Master of Science in Computer Information Systems (MSCIS) from University of Phoenix Online.
USPTA, the world’s oldest and largest association of tennis-teaching professionals, recognized tennis coaches, industry leaders and volunteers during its annual national awards presentations at the Grand Hyatt New York during the Tennis Teachers Conference.
The USPTA National Awards Nominations are submitted by the organization’s 17 divisions and by individuals annually and recipients in each category are decided by the USPTA’s awards committee.
We cannot be more proud of Randy, being chosen over 30,000 of the nation's best Tennis Professionals! Please help us in congratulating Randy!!
Congratulations to all the players for battling the heat and humidity over the weekend. The heat didn't stop the competition as Tom Murdock (defending champion) and Jim Cato found themselves tied after 36 holes of play at 153 gross. Murdock successfully defended his title as Sr. Club Champion by hitting a massive drive on #18 which secured the win on the first playoff hole #18. Congrats Champ!
Tom Murdock (Defending & 2014 Senior Club Champion)
David Crawford shot a two day total of 138 (6 under par NET) for the First flight victory over Jim Martin's 142 (2 under par NET). Final results are below that finished in the credit book money..........
1st $210 Tom Murdock 81-72-153 (Playoff Winner)
2nd $150 James Cato 78-75-153
3rd $100 Ben Graves 79-76-155
4th $80 Keith Barker 82-75-157
First Flight Net
1st $180 David Crawford 68-70-138
2nd $140 Jim Martin 72-70-142
3rd $100 Barry Sachs 71-75-146
4th $80 Rusty Hendrix 75-73-148
5th $60 Bill Montgomery 71-78-149
6th $40 Gary Battenberg 71-79-150 (Payout in Credit Book)
Tom Murdock #18 Gross 3
Sid Labbe #15 Gross 3
Mike Atnip #3 Gross 2
Todd Kalass #12 Gross 3
Marti Mortimore #4 Gross 3/ Net 2
Rusty Hendrix #9 Gross 3/ Net 2
Alan Johnson #13 Gross 2
Rusty Rivet #5 Net 2
Rick Piacenti #2 Net 2
Bailey Dixon #10 Net 3
Thank you to everyone for coming out on Thursday. We thought it went well and was a great format to watch the kids perform.
It was a tough decision to narrow down the team. We know everyone who tried out will go on to do well in future events in golf. The Kingwood Juniors will definitely be the ones to watch in our Local, State, National events. It will be fun to see our High School teams, some college players and even some future touring pros in the years to come! We are so proud of you juniors and parents big kudos to you for trucking through the ups/downs of this silly wonderful game! Ya'll are amazing!
We know the coaches and many parents only wish we could have grown up with this team format in golf!
Here is the list of the 2014 KINGWOOD select team members in Alphabetical Order:
Alternates: 1) Luke Stayton 2) Tristan Villarrealwho will be able to practice with the team/come to team competitions and will play if anything happens to one of the teammates.
COACHES for the select team will be : Aurora & Lori, with support of Matt Paradeaux.
I am actually writing this week's update for Jay as he is busy with the sprigging process on the Forest greens as I'm preparing this report. There has been a tremendous amount of progress over the last week or so with the Forest Course. Sprigs are going down today and tomorrow.
Other highlights from the past week include:New Tiff 419 collars installed on all 20 greens under renovation.Many of the most severe mounds were reshaped and softened including holes 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 16, 17 and 18.New Championship tee boxes built on holes 7 and 13.
In addition, we have aerified the Forest course once, wall to wall, and will be doing so again prior to re-opening. We have also double verticut all fairways. The golf course is really shaping up nicely.
Director of Golf
It has been another busy week in golf course maintenance. We were able to get the Island, Lake, and Marsh all verticut and topdressed this week. This should help improve both the smoothness and speed of all the greens.
This week we have also been concentrating on getting bunkers and yardage markers edged on the courses. We hope to get all of the yardage plates cleaned and painted over the next few weeks. This should help with club selection and pace of play issues.
On the Forest this week we completed the first cutting of the rough since the course closed. All of those millions of Bermuda grass seeds should have dropped down into the soil and with some luck, fertilizer, and a couple of timely rains we should see the density of the rough dramatically improved by the time we reopen.
The staff is also busy working on repairing all of the broken and collapsed drains around the course. As they are repaired we are pouring a concrete collar around them which should make them stronger, easier to keep clean and edged, and more aesthetically pleasing.
During our construction closure we are also taking the opportunity to work on several playability issues including, but not limited to, drainage, bunkers, bare areas, and over all turf health and vigor.
The contractor has all of the old greens mix removed and should have over half of the greens refilled with new mix by the time you receive this. The sprinklers around the greens have been changed out and all of the irrigation controllers have been changed out with new state of the art computer controls.
If the weather holds out like it has so far we hope to begin tarping and gassing greens no later than next Wednesday. I would again like to remind everyone to stay away from the greens while they are covered with the plastic and also please keep your pets away.
We will see you around the courses.
Jay and Duke
What a week!!! We started off the week with almost 7 inches of rain between Monday and Wednesday. We always appreciate Mother Nature's help, but this was a little more than we really needed. It definitely greened up the turf , but slowed work on all of the courses this week as we waited for it to finish raining and then began unclogging drains and shoveling up bunkers on all of the courses.
The decision was made last weekend to postpone the aerification on the Island by a week with the inclement weather forecasted. This worked out to everyone's advantage in that we were able to utilize all of the aerification equipment to get Deerwood completed Wednesday after the rain subsided and allowed us to only have one course besides the Forest down at a time. This will also make for better conditions for the MGA Match Play tournament the next two weekends as both sets of greens they will be playing will be in non-aerified condition.
Hopefully you have seen the pictures of the Forest course renovation on Facebook. I will take pictures every couple of days and have them posted there so that you can follow the progress of the renovation. The construction crew began staking and stripping greens on Wednesday. The stakes you see in the green allow us to put the grades back to the original specifications. We will be making some modifications to a couple of greens to compensate for increased green speed and to give us more pin locations. We will also be making major modifications to the practice putting green outside of the Forest golf shop to provide you with more flat area to warm up before heading out to the course.
This week on the Forest, other than pulling in all of the amenities, we have harvested sod to repair the Marsh greens. The sod from the green on 15 of the Forest has taken up new residency as the new green on 1 of the Marsh. The green should be back in play within 2 weeks if all goes as planned. Next week we will begin aerifying the Forest wall to wall to help promote healthier turf and help fill in weak and bare areas.
The Island course crew has dug out and replaced the sand in the bunkers on 11 this week with plans of starting on 10 next week once they finish aerifying.
Please use caution when riding the Forest course during construction as the heavy equipment operators are not expecting you to be there.
We will see you around the courses.
Jay and Duke
The Clubs of Kingwood is one of the world’s largest private country clubs with 90 holes of golf, 3 driving ranges, 2 clubhouses, 26 lighted tennis courts, a waterpark, fitness center and over 3,600 members. The town of Kingwood is a sprawling residential area with over 83,000 residents.
No one could have envisioned the enormous growth and success of both the Kingwood Country Club and the surrounding community of Kingwood when flying over the almost impenetrable swamps and forests of the Foster Lumber Company in 1968. In the fall of 1968, Kings Ranch had the opportunity to purchase a 40,000-acre tract of land from the Foster Lumber Corporation, who had been using this densely forested swamp area to harvest timber. This area rarely had human visitors, outside of a handful of lumberjacks and hunters, and boasted a teeming array of wildlife including wild pigs, deer, bobcats, panthers, alligators, coyotes and wolves.
King’s Ranch asked the Exxon Corporation to advise them on the investment opportunities associated with the purchase of this large tract of land. Exxon referred this project to one of its subsidiary corporations, Friendswood, Inc. A feasibility study conducted by Friendswood suggested selling off two large tracts of land totaling 25,000 acres, retaining a 12,000 acre tract at Fostoria for future development and retaining the 13,000 acre “Lake Houston Tract” to develop a master-planned community. Friendswood was, at the time, in the middle of their planned community project, Clear Lake City, and saw a promising future in this new concept of “Planned Communities.” As a result, Kings Ranch, Inc. and Friendswood entered into a joint venture with Kingwood properties to develop the Lake Houston Tract, with Friendswood being the developing partner.
The development that is now Kingwood, began with the clearing of land in the spring of 1969. The dirt road entrance to the logging camp was transformed into what is now Woodland Hills Drive, which was a single-lane road that dead-ended into Trailwood Village. The Kingwood Drive entrance would not be completed until the following year.
The master plan for Kingwood called for a series of residential villages that were to be connected by “Linear Parkways,” now known throughout the world as “greenbelts.” Kingwood was one of the first master communities in the U.S. to utilize greenbelts to connect all the separate housing areas (villages) within a large development. But, before any houses were to be built, a revolutionary concept was being formulated that would make Kingwood one of the most talked about communities of the decade. This concept used golf as the recreational drawing card for the master community’s house sales.
Throughout human history, unique and grandiose projects have been driven by people with great vision - men who would look at a swampy forest and see the future of America’s community neighborhoods.
In the fall of 1969, two such men joined forces to form a historic alliance that would mold the future of Kingwood. Bob Dedman, President of Club Corporation of America (CCA) and John Turner, President of Friendswood, formulated a novel idea to build the golf course before any houses were built.
The Kingwood Properties entered into another joint venture with CCA to build a country club within the new community. It would be called Kingwood Country Club. The first phase would include building a championship 18-hole golf course, four tennis courts, one swimming pool and a clubhouse with appropriate parking facilities. Each area was master planned for expansion. As the community would grow, the club would grow. The ultimate goal was for Kingwood Country Club to have 54 golf holes, 54 tennis courts, 6 swimming pools and ample space in the clubhouse for dining and social activities.
The most innovative aspect of this plan was the idea to allow for golf expansion on land that was in the flood plain and thus unusable for housing development. This model of turning “useless” land into recreational area within a housing development would later be used in all 50 states.
In 1971 Joe Finger (a well-known local golf-course architect) was selected to design the first golf course, the Island course, for Kingwood Country Club. His design of holes #6 and #18 would go on to win national recognition in future years.
So it was that in the late fall of 1971, actual site work began for the club. Surveying, staking, clearing and rough grading would take the rest of 1971 and all of 1972. Many factors in combination made this period of construction extremely difficult.
The first difficulty was the location of the site--the flood plain of the San Jacinto River, a half mile beyond completed paving in an almost impenetrable, snake-infested, forested swamp. Snakes were so prevalent that equipment operators often refused to get off their equipment at the job site. Snakes could be seen crawling out over the sideboards of loaded dump trucks. Dump truck drivers soon learned to keep their windows rolled up. At other times, snakes would become stuck in the mud on dozer’s tracks. As the dozer moved along, the tracks would carry the snakes by the operator’s feet. Dozer operators stayed alert at all times. Many times, all supplies and crews had to be carried to and from the job site on dozers because no other equipment could negotiate the knee-deep mud of the logging access road.
Another difficulty was the weather. Company rainfall records maintained at the site revealed that 8 feet of rainfall fell during this period of construction. Added to that, the winter of 1971-72 presented a record setting three snowfalls in one winter. The bad news was that the wet weather would continue on through much of 1973 with only a short dry period in mid-summer of that year.
By the spring of 1973, Kingwood Country Club had a golf course under construction and a temporary construction and membership office in the Trailwood Village Apartments. The five-person staff included Vic Rimes, the club development officer and manager; Liz Farish, the membership secretary; Charles Faubion, the construction and golf course superintendent; Jody Carpenter, the club secretary; and Richard Killian, golf professional. Club memberships were selling for $380. The club had in excess of 300 members. Many of the first perspective members of Kingwood Country Club got a tour of the golf course in a 4-wheel drive jeep. Vic would usually become stuck at some point and have to be rescued by the construction crew. During this period of time, John Turner was often seen trudging the golf course with golf balls in his pocket, a golf club in his hand and mud up to his knees. He just could not wait for his vision to come true. More than anyone else, Mr. Turner could be considered the father of Kingwood and a tremendous supporter of Kingwood Country Club. A monument to Mr. Turner rests today on the left side of #1 tee on his beloved Island course.
The last half of 1973 saw the completion of the Island golf course. Work continued on the clubhouse, tennis courts, swimming pool and parking. It was at this time that pavement by way of Kingwood Drive and Lake Kingwood Trail finally reached the club. The club office then moved to a temporary trailer located just outside the front entry of the current clubhouse. Kingwood Country Club was really making progress.
In February of 1974, Bill Herbold became the manager of Kingwood Country Club. Bill inherited a project that was over budget, out of money, behind schedule and laundering in another wet Houston winter. Bill solved the financing and boosted the project toward completion and a grand opening on April 16, 1974.
Once the club made it over the hump of phase-one construction and opening, momentum started to build. This was fueled in part by the good economical times of the area. As the community grew, so did the club. Also the great working partnership between CCA and Friendswood Development Corp. was a tremendous asset to both parties. Bill Herbold of CCA and John Turner, Jack Byrd and Pope Shealy of Friendswood were all a major part of the driving force that saw the original master plan to near completion by 1983.
Following the grand opening of the Island course and the club in 1974, additional facilities came along rapid fire. Along with additional golf holes came clubhouse expansion, more tennis courts, another pool and more parking. Although each golf course offered its difficulties of construction, none ever really came close to the Island course for sheer challenge. Two Brown & Root supervisors got lost for an entire day in the giant palmetto swamp that later became Kingwood Lakes Subdivision and holes #4 through #7 on the Lake course. The Marsh course was built six years later and opened in February of 1983.
The Deerwood Club was the pet-project of John Turner who envisioned an alternative golfing experience for Kingwood residents - an elite “golf only” club with one of the most challenging and unique layouts in this part of the country that catered to the serious golfer. Indeed, in the years to follow, Mr. Turner would refer to Deerwood as “The Augusta of the Southwest.”
Deerwood opened on Labor Day 1983. Joe Finger’s new masterpiece, which golf legend Byron Nelson helped him design, immediately became the most talked about course in the Ginger portfolio. Mr. Finger also designed the Island course, which by 1983 had become one of the top-ranked golf courses in the State of Texas. Deerwood grew slowly over the years and hosted many prestigious events along the way, including the 1986 Texas Amateur Championship and the Doug Sanders Celebrity Classic on the PGA Senior Tour (1986-1995).
In early 1994, the Forest course came to Kingwood Country Club as an added bonus, not in the original plan. As the flood-plain designation changed over the years, some land could no longer be used for housing. This provided the space for an additional golf course. The design concept for the Forest course was two fold. One was to create a golf course that was more than just another course at Kingwood, one that would combine more spectacular and modern design techniques. The second concept was to create a golf course where every golf course lot had a great view of the course. This provided a better value for the developer and thus helped offset the additional cost of construction. This was one more example of a great partnership working together in a community in which we all work, play and love to call home.
Probably the most exciting event for the Kingwood and Deerwood Country Clubs was being chosen by Warner Brothers in 1995 to host the filming of the popular movie, “Tin Cup,” starring Kevin Costner, Don Johnson, and Rene Russo. In the movie “Tin Cup,” (Kevin Costner in the lead role) loses the U.S. Open on the 18th hole in a dramatic finish to the movie. Deerwood’s #4 hole is the scene for this climactic ending. Most of the movie’s golf scenes were filmed at the Kingwood Forest and Deerwood courses. Many Kingwood and Deerwood members and staff are seen throughout the film as extras, especially in the famous scene where “Tin Cup” hits a ball out of the Kingwood Grill towards #18 of the Island course. Warner Brothers had their choice of almost any community or golf club to represent the finest golf has to offer for this depiction of the U.S. Open in their movie. They chose Kingwood, and the rest of the world got to experience its beauty.
The defining moment in Kingwood’s history was now taking place with Kingwood positioned as one of the largest country clubs in the world and Deerwood positioned as one of the finest 18-hole golf clubs anywhere. All that remained to form the “perfect club” for the “perfect community” was the joining of the Deerwood and Kingwood Country Clubs into one country club.
On August 1, 1997, Kingwood Country Club welcomed the Deerwood Club into its fold. With the addition of the “Deerwood Club at Kingwood,” Kingwood Country Club not only became the world’s largest private country club, with 90 holes of golf, it now had the ability to offer two different golfing and country club experiences in one membership. In 2002, Atascocita Country Club became one of the three Clubs of Kingwood, increasing the number of holes of golf offered to 117 until its sale a few years later in May 2009.
Kingwood currently has a population of 83,000 with over 21 schools, and a college. The entire township surrounds the Clubs of Kingwood, which has become the cornerstone of the Kingwood community. Driving the pristine, paved streets of Kingwood, one can see the enormous strides this former “wilderness” community has made.
We are pleased to announce that we will soon begin the process of rebuilding the greens on the Forest Course this year and our Marsh Course next year. The new greens will be TifEagle Ultra Dwarf Bermuda, the same strand of grass we have on our Deerwood, Island and Lake putting surfaces.
The Forest Course
Construction on the Forest Course is scheduled to begin Saturday, May 24 and is expected to be complete in a three-month time frame. Our goal is to re-open for Member play during Labor Day weekend. While the greens construction is underway, our team will be hard at work improving other aspects of the Forest Course. This project will include the practice greens at both the Forest Course and Golf Advantage School. Once the project is completed, we believe this will make the Forest Course one of the top golf courses in the Houston area.
During the approximate 90-day construction process, Golf Members that currently have Forest privileges will be provided the opportunity to play the Lake Course. We are proud to share that we will continue to offer Monday golf availability. While the Forest construction is underway, we will rotate play on our other Kingwood courses. Our usual tee time policies will continue.
The Marsh Course
Greens construction on the Marsh Course is planned for the same timeframe in 2015. In the meantime, we will continue to work to provide you with exceptional playing conditions. Several areas of greens have been sodded recently, with more to come. We will continue our agronomic plan that has proven successful at Deerwood Club, with appropriate modifications. This fall, we plan to overseed the Marsh greens very heavily to help push turf coverage and provide you with optimal playing conditions through Memorial Day 2015.
It goes without saying that we truly want The Clubs of Kingwood to be a place where all Members are proud to belong. The investments made in the past, the current projects and the future plans are part of the commitment we have to making the Club the best it can be and our Members’ home away from home.
Thank you in advance for your support and patience while we improve the Club. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to Darrell Fuston, Director of Golf; Jay Abbott, Director of Golf Course Maintenance; or me.
All the best,