MAC: Restoring Ponkapoag Golf Course

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MAC recently took a walking trip around the Ponkapoag Golf Course (before the blizzards) and was surprised to see the work being done to fully restore the course back to its original 36 holes. The Department of Conservation and Recreation is investing $2.1 million to restore nine holes that have been closed since 2003 due to flooding. The Ponkapoag Golf Course consists of two 18-hole layouts, but since 2003, holes 3-8 and 11-13 have been closed on Course 1. Golfers have been playing on Course 2, which is intact, or new Course 3, which uses holes from both courses.

Construction began in April 2014 and it is hoped that it will completed by October 2015. According to a recent article in the Boston Globe, the project architect of the Ponkapoag restoration is Brian Silva, a noted golf architect who has reviewed the original plans of Donald Ross, who designed 27 of the 36 holes at Ponkapoag back in the 1920s and 1930s. Nine more holes were added in 1956 designed by Ross’s protégé, William Mitchell. The Ponkapoag Golf Course, known as “Ponky,” opened as a 27-hole course in 1936. Joe Leary, the DCR’s district manager of golf courses, said he hopes that Ponkapoag will be considered for tournaments by the New England Chapter of the Professional Golfers Association of America, the National Golf Association, and the U.S. Golf Association when the restoration is completed. According to one observer, “When it is done, it will be a real gem.”

By the way, the cost to play Ponkapoag is the lowest in the area — from $30 for 18 holes on weekends to $17 for seniors and $15 for juniors during the week, which has made the game more accessible to lower-income golfers.

As was mentioned above, if all goes according to plan, golfers would begin playing on the nine reconstructed holes in October 2105.

In 1925, the owners of the Redmond Farm in Canton commissioned the Donald Ross Golf Design Company to build nine golf holes. In 1930, construction began on 18 more holes, and by 1936, the Ponkapoag Golf Course opened as a 27-hole course. In 1956, nine more holes were added to complete the 36-hole golf course.

The Patriot Ledger ran a great story on south shore entrepreneur Ron Morganelli of Canton. Ron is the founder and executive director of CareWell Adult Day Wellness Center on Longwater Drive in Norwell. The company, which Ron started in 2011, focuses on seniors with Alzheimer’s and dementia and its goal is to provide assistance for caregivers and help make a difference in people’s lives. Morganelli plans to expand and open a new facility in Plymouth. The biggest difference, according to Morganelli, is the cost. At his CareWell facility, the cost is $155 per day while a nursing home in Massachusetts costs an average of $360 per day.

Governor Deval Patrick signed into law a bill that will allow the sale of alcohol at continuing care communities, retirement communities, and assisted living facilities. On his last full day in office, Patrick also announced that the salaries of the 200 members of the legislature will be frozen for the 2015-2016 legislative session at $60,032 a year. Most legislators will see their base pay boosted by bonuses ranging from $5,000 to $35,000 depending on their leadership positions. House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Senate President Stanley Rosenberg top the list, each receiving a $35,000 bonus, boosting their salaries to $95,032.

Brian Hagan, a 6-foot, 185-pound senior quarterback from Canton, made the Patriot Ledger All-Scholastic Football Team. MAC was surprised to learn that with all the past great quarterbacks at CHS, Hagan, with 20 career touchdown passes, holds the school record. This past year, Hagan threw for 1,089 yards and 12 touchdowns, while also rushing for 682 yards and nine touchdowns. For his career, he passed for 1,747 yards and rushed for 1,193 yards and 15 touchdowns — some of the best statistics to ever come out of Canton High School football.

CHS junior Elizabeth Hamilton was named to the Patriot Ledger All-Scholastic Volleyball Team for the second straight year. The 5’9” Hamilton helped lead CHS to a 19-2 record and a spot in the Division 2 central semifinals. Also named to the Patriot Ledger team was 5’7” senior Erin Procter, the 2014 Hockomock League MVP. She also was one of only eight players selected to the Division 2 Massachusetts Girls Volleyball Coaches Association’s All-State Team.

And finally, some interesting statistics compiled by Canton Police Chief Ken Berkowitz and Canton Fire Chief Charlie Doody. In a recent Youth Behavior Risk Survey, 39 percent of Canton High School students currently use alcohol while 18 percent smoke marijuana, which is lower than the state average of 28 percent. Only 7 percent of CHS students smoke cigarettes compared to 14 percent across Massachusetts and 18 percent nationally. The Galvin Middle School survey found that 9.4 percent drink alcohol and 3.3 percent smoke cigarettes, while 3.9 percent smoke marijuana and 2.4 percent use inhalants.

Remember, when you make a choice, you change the future.

This is all for now folks. See you next week.

Joe DeFelice can be reached at manaboutcanton@aol.com.

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avatar Posted by on Feb 19 2015. Filed under Featured Content, Man About Canton, Opinion.
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