In this month’s Superintendent Spotlight we feature Ty Patton, who has been superintendent at Tokatee Golf Club for five years.
Describe your facility in 10 words or less:
A fun golf course with amazing views.
What is a little-known fact / fun fact about your facility?
Tokatee is a Chinook word meaning ‘A Place of Restful Beauty’ and had been used as a stopping point for Native Americans.
What is your best 18-hole score at your facility?
What’s the biggest challenge your facility presents to you as superintendent?
We average 80″ of rain annually and our summers are hot! On normal days we are 3-5 degrees warmer than Eugene.
What led you down the path of becoming a superintendent?
I wanted to play golf for free. In college I took a summer job at Corvallis Country Club. The rest is history!
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve witnessed or done as a superintendent?
One and a half weeks after I became the superintendent at Tokatee our maintenance shop burned down. Beware of free refrigerators!
Tiger or Phil?
Jack or Arnie?
Ducks, Beavers or other?
Grapes, hops or milkshake?
Excluding your current facility, what is your favorite golf course?
Stock Farm Club in Hamilton, Mont.
What’s your favorite tool in your tool box?
What’s your favorite major tournament?
Do you have a superintendent dog?
A four-year old German Shepherd named Black Pearl. She enjoys chasing elk – although sometimes they chase her back to me.
What would you invent right now to make your professional life easier?
A robot to handwater greens.
If you could change a Rule of Golf to make your life easier, what would that be?
No tee times before 7 am.
If your owner decided to plow up your course and make it a farm. What crops would you suggest?
Let’s say there’s a three-day weekend coming up — what are you going to do?
I would spend a lot of time with my wife and kids and then maybe head to the coast to ocean fish.
How much sand do you accidentally take home in your socks over the course of a year?
My kids enjoy playing on our sand piles so they end up taking home way more than me. If I take any home I just blame it on them.
Who is your idol in the golf world?
What is one piece of advice you would give to someone wanting to become a superintendent?
Learning how to manage people is just as important as knowing how to manage turf.