Vineyard Golf — President Obama — 100% ORGANIC GOLF — $350,000 Course Initiation Fee | CapeCodOnline.com

“Opened eight years ago, the club is thought to be the only completely organic golf course in the United States, its 18 holes groomed without the use of a single synthetic pesticide, fertilizer, herbicide or other artificial chemical treatment,” New York Times reporter Bill Pennington wrote.
Oh, in case you’re wondering, the cost of membership at the Vineyard Golf Club? The initiation fee is $350,000 with annual dues of $12,000, the Times story reveals. But as a condition of its original construction, 125 island residents must be accepted as members with no initiation fee and annual dues of $725.

August 22, 2010
Steve Heaslip/Cape Cod Times

By CAPE COD TIMES

Under cloudy, drizzly skies, President Barack Obama this morning again hit the golf links, playing at the Vineyard Golf Club in Edgartown for the second time on his Martha’s Vineyard vacation.

After about five minutes on the practice putting green, Obama teed off at about 9 a.m. No information was available about his playing partners.

This is the third full day of the Obama family’s 10-day Martha’s Vineyard vacation. Obama played a round of 18 holes at the Vineyard Golf Club on Friday afternoon.

At the entrance to the club at around 9:30 a.m. secret service, state police, reporters and photographers were standing around.

Across the street on the bike trail, a family of a dad, two adult daughters and two sons-in-law had biked down just to see the motorcade and get a glimpse of the president. They were from Philadelphia, Boston and New York. The dad, Frank Thomas of Philadelphia, had just been out biking when he saw the motorcade and called the kids. (Read more about the scene outside the golf club in a blog post by Times reporter Mary Ann Bragg.)

Thus far, the Obama vacation is living up to plans by the White House for a low-key time for the president and his family after many hectic, tense months in Washington.

The vacation is following the pattern of the family’s 2009 holiday, a fairly quiet affair that had a few public appearances by the family at area shops, restaurants, time with friends and a lot of golf for Obama. Though that vacation was punctuated by the death of Obama friend Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts.

Speculation is swirling whether the Obamas will make an appearance at the Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society Fair on the fairgrounds in West Tisbury, which concludes today.

Yesterday the First Family – Obama, his wife Michelle and their daughters Malia, 12, and Sasha, 9 – spent the day at a private beach in the Oyster Watcha Road area of Edgartown. Later in the afternoon, they returned to their rental retreat at Blue Heron Farm in Chilmark for the night.

The day prior it was a visit to Bunch of Grapes Bookstore in Vineyard Haven by Obama and his daughters and a visit to Mad Martha’s ice cream shop in Oak Bluffs.

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Happy turf at the Vineyard Golf Club

Expect President Obama to stay with his 2009 Martha’s Vineyard playbook and hit the links as often as possible.

Friday and again today he’s playing at the private Vineyard Golf Club in Edgartown.

Aside from hosting some presidential rounds of golf – Obama played the course twice during his 2009 vacation – the club has another claim to fame as detailed in a story in Monday’s New York Times.

“Opened eight years ago, the club is thought to be the only completely organic golf course in the United States, its 18 holes groomed without the use of a single synthetic pesticide, fertilizer, herbicide or other artificial chemical treatment,” New York Times reporter Bill Pennington wrote.

The golf course staff are “seen as environmental pioneers, with many in the golf industry examining their methods,” the story says. The techniques used at the course are seen as a possible template for chem-junkie golf courses across the country that rely too heavily on pesticides and fertilizers and oceans of water for those picture-perfect, green fairways.

The concept at the Vineyard Golf Club is “alternative maintenance techniques:” more disease-resistant grass, the ability to kill weeds with boiling water and remove moss with kitchen dish detergent and to keep bad turf grubs at bay, the story said.

Oh, in case you’re wondering, the cost of membership at the Vineyard Golf Club? The initiation fee is $350,000 with annual dues of $12,000, the Times story reveals. But as a condition of its original construction, 125 island residents must be accepted as members with no initiation fee and annual dues of $725.

Gregory Bryant

More Vineyard golfing for President Obama | CapeCodOnline.com.

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