1 Slovenian Greenkeepers Association Conference

Slovenian Greenkeepers Association Conference

By Laurence Gale MSc


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Attending this year's conference was a very interesting and rewarding experience. The opportunity to meet up with so many committed, friendly supportive greenkeepers and industry suppliers from several different countries was in itself a privilege for me, as the editor of Pitchcare.

It is always nice to meet up with professionals from the Greenkeeping world and talk about promoting the industry.

Now in its seventh year, the Slovenian Greenkeepers Association Conference is gaining a high reputation for bringing together a varied and interesting package of guest speakers from all corners of the sports turf industry.

Gorazd Nastran organiser and Chairman of the Slovenian Greenkeepers Association ensured the conference ran efficiently and that hospitality provided to delegates was second to none. To his credit, Gorazd had managed to attract some eminent professors and industry professionals, namely Professor Alfred J. Turgeon, Professor Joseph Vargas, Melvin B. Lucas and Stephen Bernard to the conference as guest speakers.

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The conference was held in the Hotel Dobrava ZRECE, SLOVENSKE KONJICE, Slovenia a spacious four star hotel, surrounded by the scenic Slovenian hills. Facilities, service, quality and choice of food were all exceptional. On the Wednesday evening guests were treated to dishes prepared by Slovenia's top chefs, employed especially for the occasion. The food served proved to be exquisite in every respect. solvenia-stephen.jpg

The first day of the conference featured presentations by Al Turgeon, Joseph Vargas and Mel Lucas on a range of subject areas that covered:

  • Annual blue grass / Bent grass management.
  • Thatch management.
  • Fertiliser applications.
  • Managing summer stress on cool season grasses.
  • Building on landfill sites.

The following day three presentations were delivered to delegates in the morning. Stephen Bernard gave an insight into tournament golf presentation. His presentation focused on the importance of mower sharpness, visual aids used included a wonderful set of golf course pictures from around the world. His pictures emphasised the importance of keeping mowers sharp. This was followed by two presentations by Al Turgeon and Joseph Vargas on developing an appropriate fertiliser plan and patch disease identification.

In the afternoon the delegates were taken to see one of Slovenia most demanding golf courses, the Ptuj Golf course. The Ptuj is a fairly new course that was opened in 1999 and is privately owned and thus not run by a greens committee. The club is well equipped with a wide range of machinery. Seven staff work at the course and like employees at many new courses, they are keen to promote sustainable environmental practices to reduce the use of fertlisers and fungicides.

The club has recently acquired a new wash down facility that encompasses an environment waste collection service, whereby all the accumulated waste is stored and solvenia-golf-club.jpg

The Ptuj golf course is one of only eight golf courses operational in Slovenia.

Another golf course viewed by delegates featured a small nine-hole facility that had been developed around a vineyard. Dejan Brecko the manger was responsible for managing both the course and vineyard.

After this visit guests wined and dined at the Zlati Gric and were treated to some local entertainment. The evening started with some wine tasting, followed by a warm meal and live music provided by some Hungarian Gypsy's playing traditional instruments. Later they played an interesting version of an Elvis song, this was accompanied with great gusto by Joseph Vargas, to the amusement and delight of all the delegates.

Entertainment aside, the main aim of the conference was to bring together a number of international service providers and thus enlighten and inform European practicing Greenkeepers of their products and services.

Gorazd should be commended on his sterling work on raising the profile of golf in Slovenia and other European cities of which he gets plenty of support from golfing bodies such as The Federation of European Golf Greenkeeping Associations (FEEGA) and the European Golf Association (EGA).

The following table gives details on the number of golf clubs now affiliated to the EGA.

European Statistics 2005

Countries

Courses

Players

Male

Female

Juniors

Total Europe

6 235

4 106 708

Austria

138

86 366

47 016

30 108

9 242

Belgium

65

45 589

29 879

15 710

(5 159)

Bulgaria

4

102

95

4

3

Croatia

1

168

139

29

Cyprus

4

458

336

108

14

Czech Rep.

52

19 240

12 015

4 371

2 854

Denmark

148

130 706

80 367

38 715

11 624

England

1 911

937 451

747 948

124 630

64 873

Estonia

5

680

Detail not communicated

Finland

106

105 576

62 247

29 016

14 313

France

548

359 141

222 536

96 555

40 050

Germany

648

483 172

259 462

172 336

51 374

Greece

6

1 335

860

180

295

Hungary

7

1 510

1 200

150

160

Iceland

56

9 793

6 401

2 023

1 369

Ireland

403

266 730

179 800

51 430

35 500

Israel

2

2 000

1 200

450

350

Italy

229

76 717

54 208

22 509

(7 143)

Latvia

2

600

400

70

130

Lithuania

1

265

165

50

50

Luxembourg

6

3 637

2 546

1 091

(408)

Netherlands

139

251 000

156 000

84 000

11 000

Norway

155

122 000

76 000

29 000

17 000

Poland

18

1 030

800

150

80

Portugal

67

17 642

12 359

3 594

1 689

Russia

3

4 800

2 500

1 500

800

Scotland

546

261 075

196 062

35 433

29 580

Serbia & Mont.

1

190

115

40

35

Slovakia

5

1 880

1 178

371

331

Slovenia

8

7 309

4 677

2 080

552

Spain

266

233 708

153 553

69 347

10 808

Sweden

430

554 293

315 506

146 606

92 181

Switzerland

85

46 414

25 295

16 001

5 118

Turkey

9

3 610

2 460

935

215

Wales

161

70 521

53 448

8 775

8 298

Table of information Published by the EGA

Slovenian greenkeepers Association

President:
Gorazd Nastran
Tel:
+386 (0) 5 756 20 07
Fax:
+386 (0) 5 756 20 08
Mobile:
+386 (0) 41 691 378
Email: green.consulting@siol.net.

The Federation of European Golf Greenkeepers Associations (FEGGA) has now been operating for a period of 8 years. The Federation is the unbrella body for seventeen Greenkeeper Associations. Originally formed to be a communiction medium between the Committed to Green Programme between the European Golf Association and the European Greenkeepers Associations. The role of the Federation has expanded greatly over the past eight years.


Secretary: Dean Cleaver
Tel/Fax: 0044 (0)1789 762 912
Mobile: 0044 (0)7813 921 143
E-Mail: dean.cleaver@btinternet.com


The EUROPEAN GOLF ASSOCIATION (EGA)was founded during a meeting held in Luxembourg on the 20th of November 1937.
The Association declares as its foundation the observance of the Rules of Golf and Amateur Status as laid down by the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews.
The Association concerns itself solely with matters of an international character. Membership is restricted to European National Amateur Golf Associations, Federations or Unions.


European Golf Association
Tel +41-21-784-35-32
Fax +41-21-784-35-91
www.ega-golf.ch

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