GCSAA members ready to lead service project in D.C.

Golf course superintendents will showcase and share their agronomic skills on “America’s front yard” ahead of National Golf Day.


National Golf Day service project
The National Mall in Washington, D.C., is the United States’ most-visited national park — a stage for movements and celebrations, and home to museums, memorials and iconic monuments. Photo by Kevin Dietsch

When the We Are Golf coalition converges on the National Mall for beautification and renovation work later this month, GCSAA members will have key roles in the second annual Community Service Project preceding National Golf Day.

The event, carried out in coordination with 26-year GCSAA member Michael Stachowicz, turf management specialist for the National Park Service, will focus on projects from the U.S. Capitol to 14th Street. Teams will tackle tasks such as laying sod, raking, edging, overseeding and aerating.

Chris Harriman, a 19-year GCSAA member and the superintendent at Cattail Creek Country Club in Glenwood, Md., will serve as captain for one of the teams of volunteers. Although Harriman had attended National Golf Day before as part of the Mid-Atlantic Association of Golf Course Superintendents, he says he saw a special opportunity in being involved in the inaugural Community Service Project last year.

“It’s a way to give back to the community and really get in front of the public,” Harriman says. “It’s fun and inspiring being out on the Mall and working on the grounds as part of a team with the public walking by. I have heard many say that this is a highlight of their career.”

The 180 volunteers will be out on the National Mall from 8 a.m. to noon on April 24, after which they’ll join an even larger contingent for National Golf Day on April 25.

National Golf Day celebrates the game’s nearly $70 billion economy (updated economic data will be available later in April), nearly $4 billion annual charitable impact, and many environmental and fitness benefits. Industry leaders will meet with members of Congress, the executive branch and federal agencies to discuss golf’s 15,000-plus diverse businesses, 2 million jobs impacted, tax revenue creation and tourism value.

“It’s incredible how many politicians know so little about what we do for the environment and the economy,” Harriman says of National Golf Day’s importance for superintendents. “We get the chance to show them what we are doing on a proactive basis to care for the environment.”

In addition to GCSAA, organizations taking part in National Golf Day as part of the We Are Golf coalition include the Club Managers Association of America, Golf Course Builders Association of America, Ladies Professional Golf Association, Links to Freedom, National Alliance for Accessible Golf, National Golf Course Owners Association, PGA of America, PGA Tour, Salute Military Golf Association, The First Tee, United States Golf Association, U.S. Golf Manufacturers Council, World Golf Foundation, and more.