Harmonylinksgolf's Blog

A Discussion of How Harmony Links Golf “Next Generation” Offerings Solve Industry Issues

Welcome to our blog.  In this blog, we’ll address industry issues and how our offerings solve these problems.  Last week’s press release on Harmony Links Golf’s “Renovation Advantage” (see the Press section on our website) represents a game-changing offering.

As you’ll see below costs, watering and environmental issues are increasingly threatening to all golf courses’ futures.

The St Pete Times recently reported the Southwest Water Management District in West Central Florida “says old sod can’t be replaced until summer.” Robyn Felix, a spokeswoman for the Southwest Florida Water Management District, commonly known as Swiftmud said, “Anything that causes you to need more water is unacceptable.” Tampa Water Chief Brad Beard added, “For us, it’s critical that we have enough for essential uses,” he said, estimating that up to half the city’s water goes to irrigation. “This is serious, and we’re running out of choices,” Swiftmud asked cities and counties to enforce the restrictions.” (This affected Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties in FL)  Marlene Sokol, Times Staff Writer, In print: Saturday, Nov 22, 2008  http://tampabay.com/news/environment/water/article913007.ece

At Harmony Links Golf, we believe it will eventually come down to golf courses being denied water in favor of residential needs.  That’s one reason we say our solutions are next-generation golf.  We refer to another reason later in this blog.

Additionally, in the last 3 months, every major golf industry publication that targets golf course owners, operators and superintendents has written feature articles that address:

The rising costs of providing a quality product and decreased profits

The Budget Crunch Golfdom, Sept ‘08
In The Flow Golf Business, Aug ‘08
Surviving the Cost Crunch Golf Inc., Oct ‘08
Rethinking your operation Golf Course Industry Magazine, Dec ‘08
Course Management
State of the Industry Golf Inc. Magazine, Aug ‘08

The availability and cost of using sufficient water to maintain quality greens

“Water Wise,” Golfdom, Sept ‘08
“Waste not, Want not” Golf Business, Aug ‘08
“Less is More” Golf Inc., Oct ‘08
Smart Irrigation Supplement
“Golf’s looming crisis: Golf Inc, Nov/Dec ‘08
How to keep the water flowing”

The environmental impact of using required herbicides and fertilizers

Environmental Excellence Golf Inc., Sept ‘08
Pesticides and Democrats Golfdom Dec ‘08
All Natural Pays Off Golf Inc., Aug ‘08

The “Renovation Advantage” (for existing golf courses) and “The Design Series” (for new design and construction) address every one of these issues.

Up to 70% reduction in annual maintenance costs of your greens.
Designs that virtually eliminate watering your greens and tees and saves millions of gallons annually.
Elimination of fertilizing and pesticides on your greens and tees
Elimination of capital equipment and top dressing sand required to maintain your greens.
Bent grass quality greens 365 days/yr. No aerification, over-seeding or pests.

So… what is the number one question regarding adoption of synthetic turf, given those issues are addressed by our “Design Series and Renovation Advantage” offerings based on SofTrak Greens’ product?  It is certainly playability.

Playability turns out to be the key that enabled Harmony Links Golf to enter the commercial and upscale residential markets.   Having built Harmony Pointe, The Marsh Course, which was the genesis for “The Marsh Series” see the Gallery section of our website, and designed and built DiMarco Pointe for Chris DiMarco, in collaboration with SofTrak, we’ve seen how realistically these greens receive shots and putt true.  In a meeting we recently had with Chris DiMarco he said, “My last green from another vendor was nothing like my SofTrak Greens.  These greens putt and receive shots so much better.”

Fulton Allem, after spending a morning on the DiMarco Pointe Greens was asked about the reception of the greens to shots, “This turf responds excellent. It’s hard to believe they can get synthetic turf to react as good as turf can, if not better.  If you spin it, it stops, if you don’t it releases so it’s just as honest as it gets.” (He’s quoted from the video on our site).   SofTrak Greens are the “next-generation” greens that enable that to happen.

Click here: http://www.harmonylinksgolf.com/DiMarco-Video.html to watch the Chris DiMarco Shootout video at his personal golf complex on SofTrak Greens see the playability! This is on our homepage.   Chris hosted Champion’s Tour players Fulton Allem, Jim Thorpe and Donnie Hammond and Fred Gibson for a 6 hole tournament that Harmony Links Golf provided the $2,000 1st prize.  It was exciting!  It came down to a sudden-death shootout between Chris and Fulton.  Check the video to see who won.

Our newest video of the DiMarco Shootout with more footage of putts rolling and shots being received by the green will be up on the website in a few days.  My partner, Terry LaGree, golf course architect and certified golf course builder, while on-camera, made (4) 20+ footers in a row on a downhill slider from left to right on Chris’ fastest green.  I had to see it to believe it.  During a recent Bay News 9 shoot at Harmony Pointe at my home, they video’d Terry again making (5) 15 footers in a row from the same spot and even keyed on this consistency in the segment.  Glad he doesn’t do that too often in our “one-downers.”  J   This is another reason say “next generation golf.”  The playability of SofTrak Greens is so much better than other synthetic turf brands.   For more information visit their website at www.softrakgreens.com.   You’ll see Harmony Links Golf is on their homepage.

There are several key differentiators that make SofTrak different and significantly better:

The SofTrak fiber is 36% more dense which provides a more true putting surface.
The SofTrak fiber is softer, so it doesn’t permanently bend over like other fibers. Other fibers do this almost immediately, similar to a piece of cardboard when it gets bent. This is important when you want to brush the green to slow it down. The fibers need to be able to stand up.
The proprietary RQS 2000 in-fill is very different and better. It is made from a specially formulated blend cleaned and size graded round quartz and is designed to keep the putting surface soft.

Playability problems:

“Oscillation:” In the synthetic turf industry, oscillation or “snaking” is a term that is used to describe what happens when a ball is putted and as it slows, it randomly wanders, with no rhyme or reason. When it is putted again from the same spot with the same speed, it wanders in a completely different direction. For golf courses, golfers who are working on their short game and want to host competitions with family and friends, or just practice seriously, this is unacceptable. SofTrak Greens simply don’t snake or oscillate. Period. They have a consistently true roll. Every time. Golf course owners / operators and residential golfers using SofTrak Greens can putt on bent quality greens 365 days / yr.
Receiving shots is a key when discussing golf courses and personal golf complexes. So often you see the ball act like it landed on a trampoline and bound into the air and off the green. You’ll see in the new video that shots stop, spin back and also release when the pros and even Chris’ family hit them into the greens.

Harmony Links Golf and SofTrak provide the design, construction and performance needed to solve your playability concerns.  Don’t take our word on this, visit one of our golf complexes and you will see!


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