Thursday, April 25, 2019

2019 Good Friday Severe Weather

Pine Tree Top very close to RV camper at New Green Acres
Around 2 o’clock in the afternoon, depending on your location in Colleton County, on Friday April 19, 2019 was when the predicted severe weather rolled through. Radar indications revealed red at the vanguard of the storm with plenty orange, yellow and green rain signature coming in right behind it. When a tornado watch sounded off on cellular devices at the exact arrival time of the storm, it was time to pray that everyone stays safe on Good Friday before Easter.
Reports of storm damage came in from Jonesville first. Then over the next two days, other reports were verified, revealing a path of destruction that parallels I-95 on all sides of Exit 53. Beginning just South of Exit 52, downtown Hendersonville had heavy tree damage, with power outages. And just on the other side of I-95 from Hendersonville along Cavanaugh Road they also suffered heavy tree damage, and two farm sheds lost their roofs.

Radar image from April 19 at 2 p.m.
TV news from Charleston documented the damage done at Exit 53 to the roof of the Baymont Inn, and also to then cinder block wall that is toppled at Hobo Joe’s Fireworks Store. On the other side of Exit 53 pine tree damage can be seen behind the Enmark gas station, and exploring long that frontage road, heavier pine tree damage can be found at the New Green Acres campground. The campground signage right on I-95 is now on the ground, and pine tree damage can also be seen out in the median of I-95 in the same area. There can be no doubt that other tree damage is hidden away in this rural section of Colleton County.

To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

2019 RBC Heritage - C.T. Pan Wins

C.T. Pan wears the plaid jacket in 2019
Golf Pro C.T. Pan wins the 2019 RBC Heritage, notching his first ever win on the PGA Tour. He beat 2014 RBC champ Matt Kuchar by one stroke, but still trails Kuchar in Fed Ex Cup points. Pan was scheduled to host a Junior Golf event in Houston, Texas during the Easter weekend, but decided to come to Hilton Head to tee it up on the short course that demands precision shotmaking. Par finished with a par on the 17th hole, while Kuchar bogeyed the 17th on Sunday afternoon.

To view past blog entries about the RBC Heritage click 2018 - 2017 - 2016 20152014 - 2013

To view past blog entries from The Masters click on 20192015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2009

To view past blog entries about the PGA Championship click on 2017 - 2012

To view past blog entries from the BMW Charity click on 2018 - 2016 - 2015 - 2014 
2019 RBC Runner-Up Matt Kuchar waiting on the tee

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

2019 Masters - Fans Roar For Tiger Woods Win

The epic sports comeback that played out at the 2019 Masters, won by Tiger Woods, will take a while to settle in. The layout at Augusta National golf course was the perfect backdrop for their four-time past champion to add another green jacket after 14 years. Yet this was not just about golfing greatness at The Masters, this historic win reopens discussions about the major championships yet to come, and how the game of golf benefits those who play it.
Patrick Reed slips 2019 green jacket on Tiger Woods
Longtime patrons of the Masters are familiar with the saying that this tournament does not start until the back nine holes on Sunday. On Sunday March 14, the back nine holes began right before noon time, due to threatening weather in the afternoon that prompted early tee times. With the TV coverage beginning at 9 a.m. on Sunday morning, I know of several regular churchgoers that elected to stay home and to watch the final round of The Masters. Those that watched the final round were reminded how true the old adage really is, with the 12th hole on Amen Corner providing the catalyst for Masters turmoil.
Italian golfer Molinari held a two-stroke lead on Sunday at the Masters after playing nearly flawless golf on Saturday. Everything changed on the short par-3 hole with a narrow green tucked behind a large lake. Inexplicably, Molinari hit his ball into the water and scored a double-bogey, and Tiger hit his ball onto the green and recorded a par. This two-shot swing provided momentum that would propel Woods to play his brand of closeout golf over the next six holes to claim his fifth Masters title.
Historical data from The Masters as of 2019
If you believe in fate, then you wouldn’t want this story to unfold anywhere but at Augusta National, where the nod to proper etiquette is undeniable, and golfing traditions are cherished. Tiger’s fifth green jacket means that he now has separation from Arnold Palmer’s four wins at Augusta, and only Jack Nicklaus has one more green jacket than Woods. However, a deeper look at the stats show that Palmer won his four Masters titles in eight years, winning a title every other year. But Nicklaus won his Masters titles over three decades, a feat that is appreciated more today because Tiger Woods just achieved the same feat of prolonged excellence.

To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.

To view past blog entries from The Masters click on 2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2009

To view past blog entries about the RBC Heritage click 20182017 - 2016 20152014 - 2013

To view past blog entries about the PGA Championship click on 2017 - 2012

To view past blog entries from the BMW Charity click on 20182016 - 2015 - 2014 

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

2019 Volvo Car Open - Madison Keys Wins

Keys Smiling at Media All Access Day
The formula for success regarding ladies professional tennis in the Lowcountry began with the Family Circle Cup.  Three years ago when Swedish auto manufacturer Volvo began building their high-end vehicles in South Carolina, the tournament changed names to Volvo Car Open. What didn’t change was the commitment to execute a prestigious event that would draw quality players to Charleston. American Madison Keys of Orlando is the 2019 Volvo Car Champion and is a great example of the kind of pro tennis player that shows up each year looking to take home a tennis trophy and a new Volvo S-60.
Runner-Up Caroline Wozniacki and
2019 Volvo Car Open Champion Madison Keys
The Volvo Car Open (VCO) tournament director Bob Moran had to get creative when scheduling matches during the steady hit or miss rain showers last week. The finals match did get underway at the scheduled time of 1 p.m. on Sunday April 7, but the morning doubles match final was rained out, and thus played later in the day. The finals match with Keys playing 2011 past champ Caroline Wozniacki began with a hotly contested first set that went all the way to a tiebreaker. When Keys saw a chance to be aggressive during the tiebreak, she hit winners like she had all week long to claim the first set 7 – 6 (5).

Keys accepts the applause of tennis fans in Volvo Car Stadium
The second set came much easier for Keys at 6 - 3, notching her fourth overall tennis title, and her first ever on a clay court surface. The Danish veteran Wozniacki, who owns 30 tennis titles overall, agreed that Keys was just too good on this day.  Keys hit 54 winners during the finals match and she beat three past champions during the week, including 2016 Champ Sloane Stephens in the semifinal match. Keys has played the VCO tourney each year since 2013 and brought enthusiasm and confidence to every match. Her tennis game continues to evolve, recently adding new coach Juan Todero, to keep trending towards success on the WTA tour.

To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.

To view past blog entries about the Volvo Car Open click on 20182017 -  201620152014- 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

New Tall Pines WMA in Mountain Area

New WMA public land in S.C. mountains
If you ever wish that South Carolina would expand their public lands program, then there is cause for a little celebration. Using a broad base of funding support, in the name of habitat conservation, the state is adding 1,757-acres of untamed mountain area for public hunting, fishing, hiking and paddling. This tract of land is now called Tall Pines Wildlife Management Area and it borders a mile of the South Saluda River. A gravel parking lot next to a gorgeous mountain lake with clear green water is the gateway to explore the many trails at Tall Pines.
Conifer cones litter the ground at Tall Pines WMA
Attrition at the waterline creates aquatic habitat
I found the Tall Pines WMA by traveling eight miles north of Travelers Rest in Greenville County. The last town before Tall Pines is called Cleveland, South Carolina. Cleveland is home to weekend activity at Burly Bill’s BBQ when bikers cruising the winding mountain roads stop for some sustenance. Before turning onto Moody Bridge Road, you cross the South Saluda River, and I could see anglers fishing for mountain trout in this picturesque stream. The rest of the route to Tall Pines and the property itself are draped in the natural beauty of the foothills.

My visit to Tall Pines included seeing lots of wildlife, like the wild turkey hen that crossed the road right before arriving at the parking area where a butterfly was fluttering. An island in the middle of the lake is home to what looks like an old chimney or lighthouse. The lake is surrounded on all sides by mountain ridges, complete with the tall trees that represent an intact ecosystem and create a beautiful vista.

To view the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.

Evidence of those who came here in the past