They never meant to steer anyone wrong. They knew they’d hit the bull’s eye when they came up with the event. They also “forewarn” participants; the fairways are like minefields!
“They” are the members of the Mokelumne Hill Lions Club and they’re getting ready for the club’s third-annual Cow Pasture Golf Tournament. Players will tee off on Saturday, April 28.
Anyone can putter around the pasture and n according to the official rules n only irons and putters are allowed on the course. Nine fairways n each averaging about 100 to 200 yards long n are cleared on pastureland about a mile west of Moke Hill on Highway 26. Lion Bob Geiszler said that for the inaugural event three years ago, the grass was so high that a flail mower was brought in and even that piece of equipment struggled to create the course.
“It couldn’t handle the grass,” Geiszler said.
This year, he expects the mower will have an easier time as lighter rainfall the last few weeks ahs slowed the growth. A regular residential mower is used to trim the grass and weeds to a lower level for the greens, and “holes” are indicated by circles spray painted on the ground.
Duffers make their way through the course after the 9 a.m. shotgun start. The course isn’t preplanned, Geiszler said; it comes out however the mower driver does it. Fairways run along a portion of the property parallel to the highway, then drop to a lower elevation as they lead participants back to the starting point. Aside from the frivolity folks enjoy during the game, they also get to see an incredible view of the Sierra, courtesy of the course’s layout atop Stockton Hill. (The view to the east can be amazing!)
The tournament is set up with best-ball play, during which teams of four players must use each member’s drive at least once. The pasture isn’t cleaned up prior to the tournament, and rule No. 2 makes it clear, “If God made it you can’t move it!” Players can, however, play around it, over it or through it.
Coffee and doughnuts ready the range runners for the fun at 8 a.m.
Later in the day, a chicken-in-a-barrel dinner settles duffers down as they chew the cud and shoot the bull about their play on the pasture. Adventurous members of the herd can purchase 10 golf balls and horn in on the closest-to-the-hole contest, conducted on a driving range near the course.
All are welcome to play in the tournament for $25, including dinner. Or, if swinging a club makes you feel like a bull in a china shop, dinner tickets are $10 each. Teams of four can sign up together, or the club can assign players to teams as they arrive at the tournament. Balls and tees are provided, and there are a few clubs that can be borrowed.
Reservations should be made by April 20. Mail checks payable to the Moke Hill Lions Club for the number of players to Ken Eaton, 515 St. Andrews Road, Valley Springs, CA 95252. Call 772-8589, 286-1584 or 286-1411 for more information.
Proceeds from the tournament and barbecue go toward the Lions Club’s community projects.
Contact Mike Taylor at firstname.lastname@example.org