Hickory Golf Association

Brooks National “ Old Hickory ” Golf Tournament

September 27, 2010
Saturday, the 25th of September was the date of the 1st Annual “ Old Hickory” golf tournament at Brooks National Golf Club at Okoboji, Iowa…in the Iowa Great Lakes Recreational Area. The weather played a big factor in the number of players in the tournament field with a few last minute cancellations from those that elected not to play in what those that did tee it up, called the usual Scottish play conditions.

There was cool, there was hot, then rain, then a downpour, and then cold with wind and rain….all in all, a wonderful test of golf with hickory shafted woods and irons, all 80 to 100 years old, but re-conditioned for modern day play. Mother Nature even forced a break between the front and back nines, and I know a pint or two was consumed during that break….not unlike getting a ginger beer from “ol Da” his own self at his ginger beer stand at the turn at St. Andrews in Scotland.

Although the tourney field was somewhat limited due to the weather, there was the decision to flight the players that did enter into this 1st Annual Hickory Team Event.

The winning team in the “ Walter Hagen Flight ” consisted of John Bramblit, Devon Stewart, both on the professional staff at Brooks National Golf Club joining with the father and son duo of Paul Weeks and Matt Weeks, also of Brooks National.

This foursome ran away with this division of the tournament shooting a 31 on the White course and further dissecting the Blue course with a 29 for a 13 under total of 60….as head Pro John Bramblit stated… “ it’s almost embarrassing what we did out there today, in those conditions”.

The “ Bobby Jones Flight ” team event was captured by a more mundane total of 35 on the White course followed by a 38 on the Blue course for a total of 73 for the eighteen holes. This team was happy with their showing, although a few putts were left on the course. This team consisted of three of the founding board members of “The Hickory Golf Association ”…John Ausen, Russ Fisher, and Bill Reed, all of the Des Moines, Iowa area. They were joined by local Spirit Lake businessman Dave
Russell playing hickories for the very first time.

All of the participants agreed that using the same equipment used by the likes of Harry Vardon, Walter Hagen, Francis Oimet, and Robert Tyre Jones, Jr. is an experience not to be ignored. The staff as well as quite a few members of Brooks National Golf Club are already planning ahead for the 2011 “ Old Hickory Event”.

The Hickory Golf Association will again provide (as part of next year’s entry fee) the hickory shafted clubs for those players who wish to take advantage of this wonderful golf experience. One of this year’s participants said playing with hickories was one of the things that was on his “bucket list” and said it was a once in a lifetime experience, although he’s planning on playing again in next year’s event.

Hickory golf tournaments are now held throughout the golf world and a number of tournaments are held in the mid west region from March through October each year. For more information you may go to the web site of the Hickory Golf Association: www.hickorygolf association.org. This web site will help introduce you to the world of hickory golf, the goals and mission of the HGA, and as the information becomes available, postings of up coming hickory golf tournaments, as well as results and recognitions of recently held hickory tourneys and functions.

The HGA thanks the Staff and Membership of Brooks National Golf Club for it’s support and furtherance of the “ grand auld game” and hickory golf.