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Wild Edge Club Members! 

Present your Players Club card to receive $5 off your round.  Offer good all day.  Call the pro shop at 218.753.8917 for more information


2017 Play & Stay Packages!

The Wilderness will be offering groups of 16 or more great added value packages. Please call Tom at 218.753.7894 for more information. 


Sushi Demo Night

August 28th, 2017

Luau Night

August 21st, 2017


Join us on the patio for our BBQ Nights with live music!

Every Wednesday

$18 per entree

Starts at 4:00 pm 

Reservations welcomed! Call 218.753.7804 to book.

First come first serve for outside seating. 

Quote of the Month

“The most important shot in golf is the next one.” – Ben Hogan




Message from the General Manager

Did Carl Spackler really caddy for The Dalai Lama?

Newsletter time should not always have to be serious so I submit the following for your enjoyment!

Since the recent invention of the term “fake news” I am reminded of something a boss once told me regarding challenging everything you read or hear as the truth. This was my inspiration to look a little more closely into the legend of Carl Spackler and to whether or not he actually caddied for The Dalai Lama.

My research shows that Mr. Spackler began his career in the golf business at the age of 13 as a caddie, aka “looper”, at Bushwood Country Club in Winnetka Illinois. The youngest of three children, Carl felt obligated to contribute to the family household income at an early age since his Mom passed away when he was only ten and his Dad made such little money as a dog food taster for a local dog food manufacturing company. Every summer Carl would ride his bike to the club with the dream that someday he would turn pro as a caddie. That dream changed a fateful moment during his junior year of high school.

His English teacher, Ms. Harker, made the class read Moby Dick. It was after reading this classic that Carl knew he was destined to live his life at sea. Carl would continue working as a caddie until he graduated high school in 1976 and after graduation he traveled to Chicago to find work as a deckhand on the Rarau, a Polish factory trawler. His love for the sea was short-lived when he found out he had incurable vestibular (inner ear) disorder, otherwise known as incurable sea sickness. It is True that Carl jumped ship in Hong Kong in early September of 1976, which turns out was lucky for him as the Polish vessel sank on September 29th of that same year. It was, however, during his time with the Polish crew that Carl uncovered his ultimate passion in life which was to grow grass.

Carl was gifted a Chia Pet from one of the crew because they were immensely popular to have in Poland back then. All around the globe growing grass was popular in the 70’s and Carl experimented with various techniques during his journey from Hong Kong to Tibet. That journey lasted 8 months and his love for agronomy paid his way until he made it to Tibet where he read a want ad for loopers at Lhasa Portala Golf Club. It would have been during this time that Carl’s story of caddying for the Lama would have taken place and in fact the Dalai Lama was in Tibet the same time Carl was caddying at the club.

My research, however, shows that during an interview with Jonathan Karl back in 2014 the Dalai Lama stated that he is not a golfer. I interpret this as the Lama does not want to brag about his golf skills but I will let you draw your own conclusion. The ending to my research shows that Carl stayed at the club for four months to save up enough money to move back to Illinois to take the assistant greenkeeper job under world renowned grass grower Sandy Mcfiddish who left Scoonie Golf Club to take the job at Bushwood. I hope you enjoyed this journey as much as I enjoyed researching it and I look forward to your next visit!

Tom Beaudry, PGA

General Manager


Message from the Head Golf Pro

Pace of play – What should it be?

This is probably the most common problem at most golf courses and a difficult one to manage.  Every course has their own pace of play timeline that they set for themselves or have an outside agency, like the USGA, determine that for them.  Factors that determine pace may include course length, course difficulty, # of hazards, etc. 

At The Wilderness, the USGA recommends pace of play be 4 hours and 25 minutes or under regardless of playing ability.  The belief that low handicap golfers play faster than high handicap golfers is false.  Just because one may be a better player doesn’t mean they play faster or follow some basic pace guidelines. 

Playing at a better pace is not about hurrying up or rushing around the course.  It is simply about being more efficient with your valuable time. 

Here are some great ways to keep pace moving for your enjoyment and for those playing behind you:

1. Play ready golf

2. When it is your turn to putt, finish by putting out.

3. While riding a cart together, drop one player off and go to the other ball.

4. Plan your shot before you get to the ball or while someone else is hitting.

5. Be helpful to others in the group.  Follow the flight of golf balls or to look for another’s ball.

6. Once it is your turn to play, strive to take less than 30 seconds to hit your shot

7. Keep up with the group in front of you. 

By following these guidelines, you will surely add enjoyment to your round and for those playing behind you.

Happy Golfing!

Ryan Peterson

Head Golf Professional

“It is almost impossible to remember how tragic a place this world is when one is playing golf. “ - Robert Lynd


Message from the Grounds Department

Well, looks like the five days of actual summer we had this year are finally over.  Boy was it ever rough.  The overall feel at this point is that we are now getting into the fall season and the forecast seems to bear this out.  Having worked at other golf courses in a different climate, normally this time of the year is the toughest of the year.  Summer had been dragging on for a few months and the hot temperatures would start to get old.  Here, what gets old is waiting for a summer that never really arrives and when it does it is over in a few days.  Pretty lame but on a positive note the weather at the moment is San Diego-like beautiful.  Guess I should stop whining.

But it seems that I cannot help myself-as the picture below helps to illustrate:


Bug spray damage on 2 fairway 2017

The picture above shows the outline of the footprints of a golfer who sprayed their legs with bug spray while standing on a fairway.  When temperatures rose to above 80, the sprayed turf was singed and took a solid two weeks to grow through the damage.  I have seen this kind of damage quite often on fairways not just here but pretty much anywhere there are mosquitos.  The request here is to make sure that you are on a cart path before spraying your legs or any parts of your body-or simply be careful to make sure the overspray stays off of turfgrass.  Another turfgrass subject that I would like to discuss is the repair of divots.

Different golf courses have different recommendations when it comes to player etiquette.  Things like whether to put bunker rakes in or out of bunkers (at the Wilderness we put the rakes inside the bunkers) or replacing divots.  One thing that I wish people would do more of is actually replacing their divots.  This used to be standard operating procedure but somewhere along the line somebody started this thing where you do not have to replace divots-to just use the divot mix and leave the mess you made untouched.  This is bogus.  If you take a divot that remains intact, please retrieve and replace it.  The divot may or may not survive (though any divot taken this year before July 10th would have knit in nicely).  More importantly, replacing the divot improves the playing surface for the person coming after you by both reducing the divot debris left on the fairway and filling in the divot left by your swing.  Would you rather play out of someone else’s divot filled with divot mix or a well-replaced intact divot?  Playability for all should take first priority on the golf course-even if it means a little more work.    

The simplest way to put it is if you make an intact divot, replace it.  Ideally, you will fill in any gaps on your replaced divot with a little divot mix.  This would be optimal.  If the divot disintegrates upon impact and really leaves you with nothing to replace, then using just divot mix is the proper route to take.  Check out this link for more information:

Thank you in advance for your cooperation in doing your part to help us make the course the best that it can be-not just for your group but for everyone.                   

See you on the golf course,

Vincent Dodge

Course Superintendent


Message from the Food and Beverage Manager

Wow! Summer is certainly going fast!  Maybe that is because it took so long to get here?

Our Wednesday Night on the Patio has been so much fun!  Coming up for the month of August we still have our weekly BBQ Nights as well as these upcoming events:

August 21st – Luau Night at the Wilderness.  Join us for a great night of Hawaiian Cuisine!

Quaid, Sam and their staff will be preparing Aloha Shrimp. Featuring Tiger Shrimp, Rice, Pineapple, Carrots, Celery, Yellow Onions, Serrano Peppers and Teriyaki Sauce!  Yummy!  Call today and make your reservations.

Our next Chef’s Table will be August 28th – this is a night that you will not want to miss out on.  Quaid will be teaching you 4 different types of Sushi with 3 wine pairings and a dessert cocktail.

The cost is $60 per person, please call soon, we anticipate the event filling fast!

Darlene Simonson

Food and Beverage Manager


Message from the Executive Chef

I can’t believe that August is already here! Here at The Wilderness, we may only have two months left, but those months are still jam packed with fun events and dinners. If you haven’t already came out for our Wednesday Night BBQ’s, here is what you can look forward to this month;

August 9th - Pad Thai:  Pork Tenderloin/ Carrots/ Green Onions/ Peanut Sauce/ Rice Noodles  - Music by The Divas

August 16th- This is my all time favorite!  Stout Braised Short Ribs/Jalapeno Bacon Mac and Cheese/ Grilled Asparagus/ Cornbread Muffins – Music by Cowboy Angel Blue

August 23rd - Petite Tender/ Wild Mushroom Risotto/Grilled Kale Gremolata/ Balsamic Port Reduction – Music by Ted Raukar

August 30th - Grilled Lamb Chop, Israeli Couscous, Pine Nuts/Parsley/ Shallots/ Golden Raisins/ Candied Carrots/ Port Wine Demi – Music by The Bittersweets

In addition, August 28th is our Sushi Night Demo! During this diner, I will walk you through different styles of sushi rolls and different techniques that you can then take home to impress your friends and family! This event is very popular and has select seating at a max of twenty people, so be sure to call early to reserve your seat.

Cheers and Bon Appétit!

Quaid Fetkenheuer

Executive Chef

Book a Tee Time Now!