Green keepers gather to share knowledge, info
North Island bowling clubs’ green keepers were welcomed to Whangamata on the Paradise Coast this week when the annual conference was held at the Ocean Sports Club.
Thames-coromandel Mayor Sandra Goudie and MP for Coromandel Scott Simpson both welcomed the 70-plus keepers, including two from the South Island.
Bowls NZ chief executive Mark Cameron addressed the conference.
Whangamata green keeper and Thames Valley Green Keepers President Peter Burgess who, with Cheryl and Frank Bax, organised the conference, said there were 293 bowling clubs in the North Island, 19 of those in the Thames Valley region.
Green keeping was a specialised field, Mr Burgess said.
“Every green keeper has to be a bit of a chemist and we all need to be certified to buy and handle chemicals,” he said.
The purpose of the conference was to bring green keepers together to share their knowledge and hear about developments within the fraternity, as well as hold training sessions and hear about advancements in green keeping techniques.
The conference opened on Sunday with a bowls tournament at the Leander Park Bowling Club, followed by happy hour.
Monday saw the green keepers eagerly listening to an address by Whangamata Environmental Consultant Dr Brian Coffey followed by David Ormsby talking about pesky weeds on greens and how to control and/ or eliminate them.
Advice on how to use and store chemicals, looking to the future with regards to management of greens and many other topics were discussed at the conference.
But it wasn’t all hard work. There was plenty of time to socialise and catch up with old mates or meet new ones, at the social hours and the conference dinner on Monday night, at which Olympic double gold medallist rower Eric Murray MNZM spoke about his career and achievements.
“We also promoted the Coromandel to everyone and encouraged them to travel around the peninsula before heading home,” Mr Burgess said.
“We used the slogan: ‘Our Paradise, Your Playground’ to promote the region.”
Whangamata green keeper and Thames Valley Green Keepers president Peter Burgess.