2022 Volunteers of the Year Announced

Central Links Golf is pleased to announce our 2022 Volunteers of the Year. John Bott and Les Ansay have demonstrated tremendous service to the game of golf in Kansas City & Kansas.

Rules Official of the Year: John Bott

John has been involved with the KGA/CLG Junior Golf program for over 30 years. John oversees the Kansas City section of the Kansas Junior Golf Tour. “Working with Junior players, and I don’t find it work, is rewarding in that their participation and development as players and young people is enhanced by the total golf experience and we help that happen,” John said. 

Course Rater of the Year: Les Ansay

Les has been involved in Course Rating since 2011. He serves as a lead rater, travel course rater, and rating trainer for new volunteers. “I love the game of golf and course rating has introduced me to another aspect of the game. It’s been a great experience. It has challenged my thinking and kept my mind sharp,” Les said. 

Kansas City Golf Hall of Fame Welcomes Three

On November 19, the Kansas City Golf Hall of Fame will welcome three new members at a gathering at Blue Hills. Long-time stand-out Fred Rowland who plays out of Wolf Creek; a fixture among the senior ranks, Don Kuehn; and the Devers Family who hailed out of Lake Quivira Country Club, will be added to a roster of twenty-one previous honorees.  

Over a fifty-seven-year span, Rowland won seven KCGA titles from 1956 (Junior Amateur) to the Super Senior flight in the KCGA  Amateur in 2013, including three consecutive Heart of America Four-Ball Championships with his long-time partner Dave Broderick.

He also won nine Kansas Golf Association titles, including three Senior Amateurs, three Senior Four Balls, and the Senior Team Championship. Add to that his eleven USGA Championship appearances and his Canadian Senior Amateur Championship and it’s no wonder voters overwhelmingly selected Rowland to join this year’s class.

With forty-four Championships and thirty-two runners-up to his credit, Don Kuehn has been a winner at the local, state, and national levels. He is the only player to have won the “Kansas Senior Slam” of three Senior Amateurs, five Senior Four Balls, two Senior Match Plays, and “The Railer” stroke play Championship. His victory in The Railer set records for the lowest score (-10), margin of victory (14 strokes), and as the oldest champion (71 years, 7 months).

He took his game on the road in 2011 and added three Porter Cups (Niagara Falls, NY), two Lupton Memorials (The Honors Course, Chattanooga), the Golfweek National Senior Match Play (Tobacco Road, NC), two Maumelle Classics (Arkansas), two Geranium Seniors (Georgia) and the Sunnehanna Senior (Johnstown, PA).

The Devers Family was nominated by the committee based on their collective record of success on the local, state, and international levels. Matriarch, Levon Devers won titles in six decades and was named one of “The Greatest Golfers in Kansas City History” by the Kansas City Star in 2001. She won the Kansas Women’s Amateur, the Senior Amateur, and eleven Kansas City Amateur titles.

Ian Devers won the Kansas Junior Amateur three times, played in the US Junior in 1987, was medalist in the KC Match Play, and was a finalist in the Kansas Amateur. He played college golf at KU and the University of Central Florida.

Clay Devers amassed an impressive portfolio as an amateur, winning the Kansas Junior and state High School titles in 1985, three consecutive Kansas Amateurs, and the KC Match Play and Open twice each before turning pro and racking up titles in the US and abroad.  He won the South Dakota Open twice and won four times on the Asian Tour. He was a board member of that tour for four years.

Patriarch, Andy Devers served the members as Head Professional at Lake Quivira Country Club for 38 years and was a member of the British PGA, the Midwest Section, and the PGA of America.  He was known as a fine teacher of the game, as witnessed by three of his prized pupils: Levon, Ian, and Clay.

The three honorees were chosen by a broad cross-section of local electors which included the Board of Directors of Central Links Golf, living members of the Hall of Fame, representatives of the Midwest Section PGA, and the Golf Course Superintendents Association.

Mark your calendar, and plan to attend the induction ceremony at noon at Blue Hills Country Club on November 19th. Email doug@clgolf.org for more information.

During Round Golf Nutrition

While golf is not exactly a high-intensity sport, it is still a sport that can deplete your fuel sources when playing a round.

Here are a few recommendations for your next round of golf.

Once you have established level blood sugar before your round of golf, snacks on the course will help maintain blood sugar. The biggest mistake I see is a player waiting too long to eat a snack >> Shoot for every 4-6 holes.

Oftentimes a player will wait until he or she has symptoms such as shaky hands or feeling lightheaded before eating a snack. If you wait this long it is too late and it may take several holes for symptoms to subside.

Follow these guidelines when on the course:

·       Drink water at every hole with Celtic sea salt

·       Eat easily digestible foods

·       Avoid high GI foods such as chips, crackers, pretzels, and candy

·       Avoid all sugar drinks – (many sports drinks have too much sugar)

·       If eating fruit, always combine it with nuts

BEST SNACKS ON THE COURSE

  • Any jerky – beef, bison, deer, elk, turkey
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Cup of chicken salad at the turn
  • Trail mix with dried fruit
  • Sliced bell peppers
  • Carrot and celery stick with peanut butter


Hopefully, this helps you finish the last few holes strong and win the final bets instead of being ‘juiced’ and giving it all away.

Hit em’ straight,
Dr. Roberts

Click Here to Set Up a Call

Dr. Wade Roberts is a contributing writer for Central Links Golf. Dr. Roberts is the owner of Roberts PT, a golf PT and Performance Center in Kansas City. He graduated from Liberty University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology. He then earned his Doctor of Physical Therapy from Lynchburg College. Dr. Roberts is able to provide specialized therapies for a variety of patients but has a special interest in decreasing pain, increasing speed, and achieving longevity in the golf community.

Not Just About Mowing Grass | Three Local Superintendents Share Their Stories

September 13 is Thank A Golf Course Superintendent Day

There are a few common themes among golf course superintendents: they love spending time outside, they take amazing pictures of sunrises, and they all wake up (very, very) early. Although each superintendent is unique, they all maintain a common goal to make the course the best it can be.

Matt Gourlay
Colbert Hills Golf Course | Manhattan, KS

You might know him on Twitter from the sunrise pictures of Colbert Hills or as the guy with the cutest #GolfDog (Lexi) in the business, but what you don’t know is the work he’s doing behind the scenes – his before 5:00 AM wake up call, the water conservation efforts, and the education of future golf course superintendents.

Since its inception in 2000, Matt has helped Colbert Hills reduce its water usage by nearly 72 million gallons per year. How? When asked, Matt began listing several reasons: the addition of 50 acres of native area, the removal of about 1,000 irrigation heads on the property, the use of wetting agents to help distribute water uniformly, the use of warm season grass (Zoysia), and more.

Matt leads the next generation of golf course superintendents by serving as an adjunct faculty member who shares his experience with students at Kansas State University in the Golf Course and Turf Management programs. Colbert Hills is also home to a unique internship opportunity for students pursuing a career in Golf Course Operations. The program allows interns to be “Superintendent for the Week” and make all decisions related to the entire golf course turf operation. Matt consults with the interns during their week, asking them questions and helping them think through their decisions. This opportunity allows them to come out of their internship seeing a lot more than just a task that needs to be done, truly giving them a full picture of what it is like to be a superintendent.

“I’m kinda a morning person, I love seeing sunrises on the golf course.”

When asked, “What is the best part about your job?”

Photo taken by Matt Gourlay

Vance Marlin
Cimarron Valley Golf Club | Satanta, Kansas

About an hour from Dodge City on Highway 56 you will find Cimarron Valley Golf Club, a 9-hole course with about 60 members nestled into the hills of Southwest Kansas.

Vance Marlin is the guy doing it all; he serves as the general manager, “clubhouse guy”, and (most importantly) golf course superintendent. Formerly in the agriculture industry, Vance was looking for something new to do with his career when he became a golf course superintendent in 2019. He has quickly learned through on-the-job experience while consulting with his brother who is also a superintendent.

With the exception of a local teacher who helps during the summer, Vance is a one-man show who is responsible for all turf management, mowing, chemical applications, mechanics, and clubhouse operations.

“I like that I get to choose what the most important thing to work on is. [My job is] a new challenge every day….there’s always something to figure out,” Vance said, “Most people don’t know how much work it is – it’s not just about mowing grass.”

When asked, “What do you wish more people knew about your job?”

Photo taken by Vance Marlin

Clay Payne
Buffalo Dunes Golf Course | Garden City, Kansas

He answered the phone a little out of breath, he said he was laying sod (alone) on Friday afternoon and because it has to get done – he is the one doing it. He commented on the small staff size and expressed immense gratitude for his team – but if there is something that needs to get done, he will likely be doing it too.

Buffalo Dunes is undergoing a six-year complete golf course renovation, all while remaining open to play and on a municipal budget – the brain behind the operation is golf course superintendent, Clay Payne.

Growing up in Garden City and having worked at top 50-rated clubs throughout the United States, Clay wanted to make a top-tier venue available to people living in his hometown.

Each year of the renovation will include three greens getting reshaped, resurfaced, seeded, and bunker changes or repairs. Clay noted that typically the cost to reseed new greens would cost around $140,000 but they are doing it for close to $1,200 by growing their own grass. Through progressive renovation practices, Clay and his team are saving hundreds of thousands of dollars to create a top-quality golf course that is open to the public to play for only $25. The renovation is set to be complete in 2026 – just in time for the course to celebrate its 50th anniversary.

Everyone deserves to come out and have an affordable world-class experience.

When asked, “Why are you undergoing this renovation?”

#ThankASuper

Often being a golf course superintendent is a thankless job. Many golfers can play multiple rounds without thinking about the people behind the operations. At Central Links Golf, we work with superintendents across the state to conduct our championships. These are people we get to know and love working with — we feel that they deserve all the thanks in the world for making golf happen. We encourage golfers to thank their local superintendents and maintenance crews today and every day.

For more information about golf course superintendents, please visit the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America at https://www.gcsaa.org/.

Wire-to-Wire Victory for Misemer

The Prairie Invitational presented by Dr. Douglas Cusick and sponsored by Toyota Dealers of Kansas City took place at Blue Hills Country Club last week.

Dr. Cusick & Barbara Cusick smile while being thanked at the Prairie Invitational awards ceremony.

The weather controlled the opening round; the event began with an hour delay due to heavy rains that continued at the beginning of play on Monday. Julia Misemer, the soon-to-be Freshman at the University of Arizona, got off to a hot start with an opening round of 72 which consisted of three birdies and an eagle. There were seven rounds of 75 as well including one shot by Kansas Women’s Amateur champion, Maya McVey. The weather cleared in the afternoon on the first day and the clear weather carried over into the second day of the event.

Misemer held her lead following day two, she shot two under in the second round with six birdies. Aristelle Acuff shot even par round on day two to find herself five shots back headed into the last round. Abby Glynn found her one-shot back of Acuff headed into the last round. Acuff was able to narrow the gap to four and headed into the back nine of the final round. Misemer suffered a double on hole sixteen narrowing the lead to just two. Acuff and Misemer made a birdie on the last resulting in Misemer’s first Prairie Invitational victory, earning her the title of Low Junior too.

Julia Misemer tees off on the fourth hole during round two.

The Alane Studley Low Senior

New to the tournament was the Alane Studely Low Senior Award. This award was named to honor the life and legacy of Alane Studley, who was a Central Links Golf Board Member and avid golfer. Martha Linscott won the award shooting rounds of 82-80-162.

Craig Studley (left), the husband of Alane, stands next to Low Senior winner, Martha Linscott (right)

Opal Hill Division

The Opal Hill Division is 36 holes. Aliyah North held the lead after day one with a round of 82. Home course favorite and defending champion, Diane Sparks shot a round of 83. North controlled the lead the entire day in the Gross division with a final round of 74 headlined by a bogey-free 35 on the front. North won in commanding fashion, and Annie Johnsen and Charley Strahm finished in a tie for second. The net division was won by Heidi Calvin, who shot net rounds of 74 and 71 to win the title.

The Prairie Invitational had another successful year by raising over $30,000 Girls Performance Initiative. The 2023 Prairie Invitational will be played at Kansas City Country Club in honor of the tenth anniversary of the event.

FULL RESULTS >>

The Kansas Junior Am is underway at Ironhorse

The Kansas Junior Am got underway today at Ironhorse in Leewood, Ks. This tournament consists of the deepest field in junior golf in the state of Kansas. Former and present high school champions and future collegiate athletes line the field this week. The biggest factor today was no doubt the weather. With a heat index over 100 and high winds the players faced a difficult challenge. The field went off in two waves today, giving the morning wave a slight advantage with the afternoon heat brewing. In the morning wave Kyle Kasitz of Wichita fired an impressive 69 which begin with a 5 birdie stretch between holes two and six. Kyle suffered a double on 9 and a bogey on 11, but locked back in to birdie the 14th in route to his impressive 69. Zackary Clark also fired an under par round in the afternoon wave. He made 3 birdies and 2 bogeys to end with a 71. Chance Rinkol sits in third place following a round of even par that included three birdies and an eagle.

The girls only had to play in the morning wave which allowed for some really good scores. Kinslea Jones of Wichita led the field with a 73. Her round consisted of two birdies and three bogeys. Bailey Burkett of Kansas City shot a 74 with an eagle on hole 14. Brooke Thiele made the trip down from Nebraska to compete. Brooke will only be in eight grade, but that didn’t stop her from making 3 birdies on the day and shooting a 76, finding herself in third.

Today was also highlighted by a hole-in-one from Blaine Sullivan. Blaine hit a 153-yard pitching wedge on the downhill 12th hole. Following tomorrow’s round, there will be a cut before the final day of play on Wednesday.

Day 2

High winds and intense heat created more of a challenge today. Jacob Fratzel led the boy’s side with an impressive 69. Will King kept his strong playing going by carding an even-par round. Zack Clark struggled out of the gate with two bogeys, but managed to claw his way back and still remain tied for the lead at the end of the day. 12 players set within 4 shots of the lead making tomorrow a guaranteed day of excitement. 

On the girl’s side of the competition, Kinslea Jones picked up right where she left off. Jaylee Castro had the round of the day with a 69, shooting 14 shots better than yesterday and moving into the fifth position. Can Jones hold onto the lead will be the question tomorrow? She currently holds the lead by 4 shots. 

On another note, there were two hole-in-ones today. Avery Hershman made one on 5 and Wiley Curtis made one on 12. Jaylee Castro also holed out for an eagle from 76 yards on 11. 

New Sponsor For Kansas City Championships

Granite Garage Floors to Sponsor Kansas City Championships

Our Kansas City Championships will have a new face this year, Granite Garage Floors, a Prairie Village-based company will sponsor the six Kansas City-based events: KC Match Play, KC Women’s Match Play, KC Junior Match Play, KC Amateur, KC Junior, and KC Four-Ball.

Owner of Granite Garage Floors, Greg Slicker, has been a long-time supporter of Central Links Golf and formerly the Kansas City Golf Association. His kids have played in many junior golf tournaments, and he is a member of Indian Hills Country Club in Mission Hills, Kansas.

We are very excited for this new partnership with Granite Garage Floors and Greg Slicker. Both Greg’s enthusiasm for amateur golf and Granite Garage Floors’ commitment to quality work are things we value greatly in partner companies. We’re looking forward to a great relationship.

Doug Habel, Executive Director of Central Links Golf

Get to Know Greg Slicker

Tell us about yourself

I grew up in Nebraska and my Dad introduced me to golf at a young age.  I played golf throughout high school and was fortunate to play golf in college (West Texas State & Nebraska) as well.  We were members at Meadowbrook CC for years until it closed and a few years ago, we joined Indian Hills CC

Why did you want to partner with CLG?

CLG is a great local organization that supports our community and aligns well with our company’s values and goals.  CLG has provided a ton of opportunities for both of our kids (Ben-17, Ella-14) during the past 10-12 years, and being able to support CLG via our GGF sponsorship is a WIN for both our family and our small business.

What is Granite Garage Floors?

Granite Garage Floors is an industrial epoxy and polymer floor coatings business.  We specialize primarily in coating & restoring residential garage floors, but also coat concrete in residential basements and commercial environments as well.  We started our business in 2008 in KC and now have 17 locations nationwide.  We pride ourselves on being a locally-owned, Prairie Village-based business that prides itself on integrity, impeccable customer service, and installing a quality product that is an exceptional value for KC homeowners.

What is it like running a small business?

Golf and running a small business are similar in that they are both extremely difficult, lonely at times, and come with a lot of ups & downs.  However-the process of learning to overcome the challenges of both to see the fruits of your labors is extremely satisfying and not comparable to many other things in life. 

What are your top golf experiences?

My personal experiences in golf have been wonderful – still can’t explain how in awe I was the first time I walked onto Augusta to see a Masters practice round in the late 90’s or the pure feeling of playing a great course like Bandon Dunes.  However most of the top golf experiences my wife, Erin, and I have had have been with our kids.  Being a part of helping them learn the game, caddying for them, seeing them compete at a high level, and now having them both beat me like a drum has been so fulfilling.

Slicker Family at USKIDS Worlds in 2019

Granite Garage Floors is extremely grateful to be a part of the CLG team and honored to partner with our local KC-metro golf community in the coming year!

Greg Slicker, Owner of Granite Garage Floors

You can learn more about Granite Garage Floors here >>
Follow Granite Garage floors on Instagram here >>

View Tournament Schedules:
Men’s Championships >>
Women’s Championships >>
Junior Championships >>

Learn more about CLG sponsor opportunities here >>

February Funding Drive for Youth on Course

Did you know that Central Links Golf is responsible for funding Youth on Course in our region? Help us expand Youth on Course throughout the state of Kansas! Our goal is to raise $30,000 this February. Please consider donating $10 or more to support this initiative.

2022 Season Spotlight

The 2022 season is approaching quickly! Central Links Golf can’t wait to see everyone out on the golf course after the long off-season. Interested in playing in an event for the first time? Whether it’s junior, senior, men, or women’s event you are looking for, here’s a quick guide to some of our events!

Click here to sign into your Golf Genius player account to enter online for events.

Women’s Events:

KS Women’s Amateur | Topeka Country Club | July 11 & 12

The KS Women’s Amateur is open to female amateur golfers with an active handicap with CLG. This event includes 54 holes of stroke play and play between 5800 to 6200 yards.

KC Women’s Match Play | Hillcrest Golf Club | June 20 – 22

This championship is open to any female amateur golfers with an active handicap with CLG. Ladies will participate in an 18-hole stroke-play qualifying round and the top 32 scores will advance to match play in the Championship or Silver Bracket.

Tee Fore Two Championship | Salina Country Club | August 29 & 30

This fun, team event includes one round of four-ball and one round of Chapman alternate shot. Bring a friend and play as a team in one of our more laidback events! The field will be split into flights based on team handicap index and includes net winners as well as gross.

Men’s Events:

KS Four-Ball | Eagle Bend Golf Course | June 11 & 12

One of our most popular team events, the KS Four-Ball also serves as a Heart of America Match Play qualifier. Teams of two compete in two rounds of four-ball with gross scoring only and in two divisions: open and masters. This event is open to all male amateur golfers regardless of age or affiliation. The top 8 teams will qualify for the HOA Championship.

KC Amateur | The Golf Club at Creekmoor | July 29 – 31

This city amateur includes 54 holes of stroke play over three days with five different divisions players can compete under: open, senior, players, super seniors, and legends. Players will compete in gross and net scoring depending on the division and there is a cut after the first 36 holes.

Senior Events:

KS Senior Amateur | Terradyne Country Club | August 15 & 16

This stroke play event is open to male amateur golfers aged 50 or older. Players will compete in 36 holes of stroke play in one of two divisions: senior and super senior. Players that wish to compete in the overall championship must enter the senior division.

KC Senior Match Play | Hillcrest Golf Club | July 6 – 8

This match play event is open to senior male amateur golfers aged 50 or older and with a GHIN handicap index of 8.0 or lower. The field is limited to 30 players. Players compete in an 18-hole stroke-play qualifying round and the top 16 scores will advance to match play.

Junior Events:

KS Junior Amateur | Ironhorse Golf Club | June 13-15

Our premier junior event of the summer includes 54 holes of stroke play over three days. This event is open to any junior amateur golfer with an active handicap index with CLG. Male golfers will be placed into a division based on their age and the girls will play in one division together. A cut after the first 36 holes is made in each division.

Sadie Park Sunflower Girls Championship | Emporia Golf Course | August 5 & 6

A newer event is offered to any female amateur golfer with an active handicap with CLG. A fun event that includes 36 holes of stroke play over two days and played at a Kansas High School State golf site. This year it will be held at Emporia Golf Course. All levels are encouraged and there is no handicap index requirement. This is a fun event for all girls to play in before school starts back in the fall.

KC Junior Tour | KS Junior Tour | June & July

Between the two tours, CLG offers over 30 events for junior golfers during the summer. For more information on junior tour registration and schedule, please see our junior tour page here.

These events are just a few options available for all golfers. For a full slate of events offered, click here!