If you’re headed to Phillies spring training
camp and wondering about where to play golf in the Clearwater area, here are suggestions
from a golf writer friend of mine in nearby Safety Harbor:
As for recommendations, a very good
semi-private pubic fee course is in a small town about 15 miles north of
Clearwater. The course is Fox Hollow and located in New Port Richey. If your
friend does not mind driving a little distance, i
would recommend it.
A little bit closer is the
Belleview Biltmore, right in Clearwater. Nothing great, but OK... If money is
not a real object, there's always Innisbrook Resort,
where the PGA Tour event will be next week... They've got about 5 courses
there, so some are better and more expensive than others.
is another daily fee course, about 6-7 miles just north of the Phillies
complex. it's a good course for the fee. Actually, as I think about it, i'd say Fox Hollow and Landsbrook
are probably the best for the price in the immediate area of Clearwater.
I shot, edited and uploaded
10 vignettes featuring Jeff Silverman,
who has spent much of the past two years researching and writing a new history
of the championships hosted by Merion over
the past century.
The videos, Part 1 through
Part 10, cover everything from the founding of Merion, to what makes the East Course special, to the story and
history behind the club’s famous red wicker baskets.
Here’s my personal favorite,
the video on the wicker baskets.
I’ve got an another update on Jim Finegan,
this time from the horse’s mouth:They’ve got him up and walking and he’s even dreaming about eventually making
his return to golf.
"Only a madman would look to the future of his
game when he didn’t have one going in," said Finegan, 83, laughing at
himself. "But what do I find myself doing every day?Wondering about how my game is going to
Finegan, the golf historian and
author, fractured his femur in a fall on the stairs of his Villanova home on
Jan. 30.He spoke yesterday by phone from his bed
in Devon Manor, a rehab center,
where he has been since a few days after the fall and subsequent surgery.He said he has no idea how long he will
be in rehab.
Sounding clear-headed and upbeat, Finegan did
change the medical report, at least from the early reports from his wife, Harriett.He said he did not break his hip.His only broken bone is a fractured
femur, in his upper leg.
"I am certainly feeling better," said Finegan."I am able to do things on Tuesday that
I couldn’t do on Monday.There is
His walk, he said, is an unsteady gait that
will earn him no style points.Still, Finegan
finds himself daydreaming about playing golf in the spring.
"I should be wondering if I will walk again,"
he said."But no, I am looking to
the point that maybe there is a short par 3 in my future.I should give it up but my mind keeps
dragging me back to how I would play."
The title of the book pretty
much says it all.Nothing enhances an
experience like knowing the history behind it, and this book is primer on one
of the most important events in modern golf history, the ’50 Open at Merion.
I read it when it first came
out a couple of years ago, but I was in a hurry, trying to prepare for a Q&A with the author, David Barrett.Now, as
I prepare for to the Open, I’m
re-reading Miracle at Merion much
more slowly, plumbing it for details.
If you want an appreciation
of golf history made in Philadelphia, this is not a bad place to start.
news for friends and fans of Jim Finegan is that he
is out of Bryn Mawr Hospital and in Devon Manor, a
rehab center, where he could be for a couple of weeks.
Finegan, 83, the golf historian and
author, broke his hip and two bones in his leg when he slipped on the stairs in
his Villanova home on Jan. 30.
been through so much, but he was fine this morning," Harriett, Finegan’s his wife of 60 years, told me Saturday
night.His pain is largely gone,
now that doctors have adjusted his medication, she said; his spirits are also better.
talking like a maniac this morning," said Mrs. Finegan.
Finegan is already asking when he
can go home, but signs are he’ll be at Devon Manor for a couple of weeks, maybe
more, said his wife."We’ll see how
it goes," said Mrs. Finegan.
historian and author, has been in Bryn
Mawr Hospital since Wednesday, after a fall on the stairs in his Villanova
with his arms full of ice cream and Diet Coke per his usual routine as he
headed off to bed at 1 a.m., fell only one step, but it was enough to break his
hip, his femur and a third bone in his leg. He underwent surgery to repair the
breaks on Thursday.
"Saturday was terrible but the
past two days have been very good," said Harriet
Finegan, his bride of 60 years, who heard the commotion when he fell and
No word on how long Finegan will be in the hospital.As of this afternoon, Mrs. Finegan said he was not yet up to
having visitors or taking phone calls.
Also no word on whether this
will bring down the curtain on Finegan’s
golfing life.No one is more avid
and, in his day, Finegan was quite
the amateur player, winning multiple club championships at Philadelphia Country Club.
was already used to enduring chronic pain, suffering from a bad back for more
than 15 years.