About Me

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Los Gatos, California, United States
Kevin is currently the certified superintendent at La Rinconada Country Club. Kevin was the Director of Maintenance at Lahontan Golf Club for over 14 years. Some of the responsibilities over the expanse of his career include the daily upkeep of multiple golf courses, natural resources, environmental compliance, and roads and streets. The wide ranging expertise has come from a combination of education and experiences. Degrees in Meteorology (1987 University of Nebraska/Lincoln), and Horticulture (1992 Colorado State), complete the formal side of this important combination of qualifications. A lifetime of experience around golf courses, and the game of golf was provided by Kevin's father.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Projects, Past and Future

As I come into my second fall here at La Rinconada my plate is still full, an I like that. There is a lot of improvements planned for the coming months and I wanted to go over those things and review what has been done in my first year and a half.

The biggest project has been the turf conversion. Everything that was done when I became Superintendent was predicated on that project. Selection and purchasing of equipment, sand, seed and fertilizer, and identifying the contractors and staff to make it happen. And once the turf conversion itself was committed to we capitalized on the opportunity to add 6,000 tons of sand to the fairways, rebuild the 15th green complex, and add drainage to the first fairway, all in those first few months on the job. Fast forward to today, and we are seeing the benefits as the turf has matured into a consistent stand of grass for play and a deep green color that is beautiful to look at.

The 12th fairway September 2012

One of the goals since my arrival was to create consistency in the maintenance of the golf property. I refer to it as the golf property because it is more than the course. The upkeep of cart paths, trees, maintenance compound, and the cottage are best preserved when there is a vision and care is consistent year to year. Spending in the past years has not always been predictable and consistent producing cycles of large investments in the infrastructure such as what has been done in the last few years at La Rinconada.

The first things that was done when I was hired at La Rinconada was to invest in the Cottage. It is a great amenity for the club to have this available for the Superintnendent, however it was overdue for improvements. The improvements that were made included forced air heating, re-wiring of the majority of the structure ,and kitchen and bathroom re-models. And in the last few months the sewer lift station dating back to the 1970's failed and was subsequently rebuilt. A job I do not want to repeat.

The irrigation control system at La Rinconada has been in place for more than 15 years. The soft ware was last updated about 7 years ago and has since been discontinued by the manufacture and is not supported. The upgrade for the irrigation control system has been a capital improvement item for the last 5 years and this year it was approved for replacement. The new system was installed in early April and is being programmed for effieciency. The new control system allows for individual heads to be controlled with greater ease, increased programming options, and monitoring of soil water conditions can be done remotely. The entire system is state of the art and can be controlled from a smart phone or i pad.

The irrigation system has also been fitted for an injection pump unit that will allow for fertilizers and water conditioning products to be introduced at the pump station. This technique is often referred to as fertigation and it results in a golf course that is more even in color and growth as well as better infiltration of water.

The errant golf balls on the 5th hole are being addressed with protective netting and a grove of redwood trees. The trees were transplanted the third week of April. The netting structure was put into place this September.

Both entrances to the club are in need of landscape updates. For this year, planning will be done and concepts submitted to improve these area in the future. Presently work has been done to clean up the landscaping at both the Wedgewood and Clearview entrances.

The maintenance facility is an area where equipment sits outside and has been deteriorating in the sun, so I have recommended a roof structure that hopefully will be built this winter.

Proposed Shade Structure to be built at the golf maintenance facillity

A nursery green has been a goal of the greens and grounds committee for a number of years and one was created this spring maintenance from the aeration cores taken of the greens.

Nursery Green

Irrigation Control System Components Awaiting Installation last May

The entry way at both the Clearview and Wedgewood gates have been identified as needing improvement and the overgrown vegetation behind the 18th green was done last week as a first step. A landscape architect will be hired to address these areas and add a cohesive look and feel to the property.

Clearview Entryway Overgrown 

I feel very fortunate to be able to implement these improvements of the Club. They are things that provide value to the price of a membership and quality to the property, that when cared for become predictable expenditures in the future, limiting the large ups and downs of capital spending.


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