Sustainability in Golf...Beyond the Green


golfMany look at the tremendously popular sport of golf and perceive only a needless drain on the economy, with money uselessly spent on maintenance and development of courses. Experience Green recognizes this idea as a common misconception. They understand that, in reality, the golfing industry provides green habitat for wildlife, increases neighboring property value, and offers members of the nearby community opportunities to grow closer together.

Thus, Experience Green presents Sustainability in Golf ... Beyond the Green as an opportunity to advance people’s understanding of golf’s massive potential in sustainability. The event will run from Oct. 3-4 at the Sea Pines Resort. Its overarching goal: To utilize sustainability in order to supplement the planet, its people, and its prosperity. These three target groups are also referred to as the “triple bottom line."

Experience Green recognizes the benefits of working together in furthering their goal. Teresa Wade, both the founder and executive director of the ambitious program, comments that, “Collaboration is a key ingredient to promoting sustainability.” This idea is the reason why, she goes on to say, “this event intentionally brings all segments of the golf industry together to not only learn from each other, but to strengthen connections to benefit the industry as a whole.”

The two-day affair is the first recorded occasion of its sort in all of North America. In conjunction with its focus on the environment, Sustainability in Golf...Beyond the Green is a “zero waste event,” meaning that no trash from the grounds shall be sent directly to a landfill; instead, all waste will be reduced, reused, and recycled.

The event boasts a wide variety of panels, featuring golf technological innovators, sustainability experts, and other industry specialists; award-winning American and Canadian speakers will deliver presentations and hold talks about fascinating issues. Both discussion panels and presentations feature prominent topics relating to the “triple bottom line’s” crossover with the golfing world, such as limiting the sport’s negative impact on the environment, integrating modern technology, and understanding how golf courses affect the value of nearby properties.

One such panel is the “PLANET - Go Green Save Green” discussion, beginning at 11:15 a.m. on that Thursday. Featuring three qualified and accomplished panelists, as well as being moderated by Greg Lyman, the Environmental Programs Director for the Gold Course Superintendents Association of America, this panel is a must-see. “PLANET - Go Green Save Green” focuses on the concept of stewardship and people’s responsibility to take care of the environment now, in order to pave a smooth road for the future. The panelists will speak on a proper balance within a golf course, juggling use of energy with conservation, waste with water, and the proper balance between vegetation and wildlife. All of these factors must come together in the proper state of equilibrium in order for a great, sustainable golf course to become possible.

After the workshops and events, which will consume the majority of Oct. 3, the day culminates with a beautiful sunset reception in Harbour Town. Attendees, be prepared for a relaxing, casual evening at one of the prime locations on the entire island.

Also located in Harbour Town is the newly rebuilt 18th Green. Sustainability in Golf...Beyond the Green features a 5:00 p.m. Thursday tour of this sustainable marvel, showcasing the hole’s recent reconstruction as to be more environmentally sound. It now features marsh grasses and natural soils that help establish a better ecosystem within the area, while also helping to prevent erosion. Hopefully, future golf courses in the area will take inspiration from the updated 18th green, promoting a more stable environment and ecosystem across the entirety of Hilton Head Island.

The entire program concludes that Friday morning, Oct. 4, with a golf outing to the Ocean Course, located within Sea Pines Resort. The first golf course constructed upon the entire island, it was updated and partially reconstructed in 1995, sculpted by the capable hands of Mark McCumber. The Ocean Course is very aptly named, for it features one of the only two oceanfront holes on Hilton Head, and should prove a delightful experience to seasoned veterans and newcomers to the sport alike.

Never before has a program such as Sustainability in Golf... Beyond the Green come to Hilton Head Island, and it may be a very long time before one does again. Thus, current residents of the area have been granted a remarkable opportunity, one that none should let go to waste. The “triple bottom line” — planet, people, and prosperity — is an incredibly important concept all should come to understand.


The laundry list of reasons Berkeley Hall wanted to partner with the Players Amateur could go on forever, but every entry points back to a simple fact: It's great golf.

WHAT: Sustainability in Golf …Beyond the Green
WHEN: 7:45 a.m.-7 p.m., Oct. 3; 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Oct. 4
WHERE: Harbour Town Conference Center and The Golf Club at Sea Pines Resort
DETAILS: A symposium to educate, engage and inspire the golf community on sustainability