The Rising Stars of Women’s Professional Golf Hit the Links at Myersville’s Musket Ridge Golf Club on the Symetra Tour’s Road to the LPGA
By Michael Vyskocil
In an arena dominated by individuals with names like Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, lavish locations like Augusta National Golf Club and publicity surrounding the Ryder Cup, men’s golf certainly receives a considerable amount of attention in the sports world. After all, when was the last time you watched a women’s round of golf from start to finish on television? Upon walking into a sporting goods store, have you noticed the rows and rows of men’s clubs – and enough accoutrements to entice any guy with a weak spot in his wallet – but a comparatively small section of women’s golf equipment?
Speaking of money, one merely has to examine the leader board of men’s and women’s professional golfers to get an even greater sense of the disparity between the sexes. July USA Today figures for 2012 PGA tour winners reveal that top-ranked Tiger Woods has played in 12 events and won three as of July 6. His winnings total more than $4 million. Second-ranked Jason Dufner has competed in 15 events and won two, netting just over the $4 million mark himself.
You have to drop down another 60 places on the men’s list to find the equivalent of the female money leaders for 2012. Top- ranked LPGA golfer Ai Miyazato, who has participated in 12 events and won only two, has received just a little more than $1 million in tournament action so far this year. Yani Tseng occupies second place with her earnings of slightly more than $1 million after winning three of 12 events.
And here’s another curious prestige factor from ESPN.com. Stats and bios abound for all 314 golfers on this year’s PGA money leaders list. But that isn’t the case for the LPGA money leaders; the only information displayed on their list consists of ranking, name and earnings. Despite this disparity and lack of hype, no doubt the ladies of the links will drive some attention to Frederick County as it becomes the host site for significant LPGA Futures action this summer when the inaugural Challenge at Musket Ridge debuts at the Myersville golf resort Aug. 20-26.
As Maryland’s only women’s professional golf tournament, the event will host 144 professional female golfers — some who are traveling across the globe to play in Frederick County — competing for the coveted spots in the LPGA as well as the $100,000 purse. The Challenge at Musket Ridge is part of the Symetra Tour, the official developmental tour of the LPGA. And it’s this tour concept that marks some of the major differences between the men’s and women’s golf world.
“The Symetra Tour has been designed to prepare its members for a successful career in the LPGA,” says Director of Tournament Marketing and Sales Chris Osche. “Musket Ridge is number 13 of 16 locations on the tour schedule, and those who finish in the top 10 of money winners receive [full equal status] in the LPGA Tour in 2013.” He further notes that female golfers, unlike their male counterparts, do not skip over the developmental tour level in their advancement toward the LPGA. Think of Symetra as a finishing school of sorts.
So why is the Challenge at Musket Ridge such a big deal for Frederick County and the 144 LPGA hopefuls?
The event, Osche explains, not only supports “professionals who are building their careers” with another opportunity to get closer to LPGA membership, but it also has tangible economic benefits for the host location.
He explains that the host markets benefit from an increase in hotel stays and the exposure provided by real-time scoring from the event location that’s seen by people across the country and around the world, elevating Frederick County’s visibility in Maryland and beyond.
The Challenge at Musket Ridge will also feature some amateur Maryland-based talent as well. Elyse Smidinger, 18, is one of two Marylanders who have been offered a spot in the competition. The Crofton native made waves at the 2011 USGA Women’s Amateur tournament when she won her first match 2 & 1 by defeating co-medalist and number one seed Jihee Kim. “It will be a great experience competing against women who might be the future of the LPGA,” Smidinger says of the Challenge at Musket Ridge. “My goal is to win it.”
And it can come down to a single stroke that separates the amateurs from the professionals on the Symetra Tour.
Damon DeVito, managing director for Affinity Management, Musket Ridge’s management partner, says, “We want the tour to be successful. One of the things that we also want to do is to help Frederick County shine in the eyes of the players, so we’re trying to do little things to make the players’ experience great.”
In addition, the fan environment is also different from that of PGA events. Not to knock the PGA, DeVito says, but the players of the LPGA have a certain level of “approachability” and embrace the fan-player relationship.
“I feel that the Frederick community also seems to be embracing the event,” DeVito says. “It’s the pride of the people in the community that can make this successful, and it is going to be a great opportunity to come out and watch some really great golf.”
Enter to Win
What do you think about the disparities between men’s and women’s professional golf we presented in this article? Share your ideas with us and enter to win tickets to the Challenge at Musket Ridge Symetra Tour event this August. Send us your ideas (no more than 600 words in length), along with your name, telephone number and email address, to firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday, Aug. 13. We’ll choose two readers who will receive a package of four, one-day admission tickets to the event.
Charities to Benefit From Challenge at Musket Ridge
Explore how local charities are benefiting from the Challenge at Musket Ridge event.
If You Go…
Challenge at Musket Ridge
Aug. 20-26 | First round of play begins Friday, Aug. 24
Musket Ridge Golf Club
3555 Brethren Church Rd., Myersville 301-293-9930
Tickets: $10 adults | Free for ages 15 and younger
I suspect most people are like me and not ready to be in an Adam and EV relationship yet.
By Mike Clem, Editor in Chief
Around our household lurks a legion of electronic gizmos that always seem to need my care and feeding. But unlike our dachshund, who never hesitates to let us know when it’s her feeding time, these devious devices wait silently until I need to use them to remind me they’re hungry for power. This is one reason why I doubt if I’m ready to own an electric vehicle (EV). I mean, if I can’t remember to plug in my iPhone, can I trust myself with a car that requires hours hooked up to an outlet rather than minutes at a pump? And will I be frantically searching for a socket if my EV runs out of juice on the road just like I do when my laptop dies in public?
Hey, I’m all for being environmentally friendly; so far it’s been pretty nice to me, letting me breathe and eat and all. I also like saving energy and money too. But when it comes to technology, I’ve never been an early adopter. I’m a firm believer that it’s the second mouse who enjoys the cheese. Plus, I just have an issue with any gadget that is too needy because machines were made to serve us, not the other way around (at least until the Robot Apocalypse of 2087). Then there’s my concern about just how green EVs really are, with their “long tailpipe” extending from the car, through the electric cord, back to a coal-fired power plant’s smokestack.
I suspect most people are like me and not ready to be in an Adam and EV relationship yet. According< to the National Automobile Dealers Association, EVs account for just 3 percent of the nation’s overall vehicle sales. And despite $5 billion in federal grants, guaranteed loans and tax incentives, Americans bought only 71,000 plug-in hybrids or all-electric vehicles in the past two years — a far cry from the president’s goal of 1 million EVs on the road by 2015.
That’s proof you can’t mandate human behavior. But there is a Frederick County-based company whose product may help overcome our natural reluctance to this new form of transportation by making charging stations that have a familiar look and feel to current fuel kiosks, are easy to use and solar powered (p. 38). Convenience, accessibility and simplicity could encourage even me to be one of the 11,683 Marylanders predicted to buy their first EV by 2015.
You’ll also find other people in this issue who are changing traditional attitudes about what we eat (p. 12), how we work (p.18) and where we get our health care (p. 30). I hope their stories may spark some new ideas or alter some current thinking on these subjects. But now you must excuse me, my laptop’s about to die and I need to find an outlet.
Happy Earth Day.
Graduation ’13 by the Numbers
Compiled by Kim Weaver
Graduations are soon to commence in Frederick County, but there’s still some time to get educated on the subject of the Class of 2013. To bring you the sheepskin statistics without a lot of pomp and circumstance, we’ve already done the ’riting and ’rithmetic, so all you have to do is the reading. —The Editor
Download the full infographic poster as a PDF!
- 94.69% graduation rate for females in Frederick County Public Schools (2012)
- 90.99% graduation rate for males in Frederick County Public Schools (2012)
- 10 high schools in Frederick County
Average cost of a basic, “no frills” class ring
- $270 for a female high school ring
- $278 for a male high school ring
- $243 for a female college ring
- $266 for a male college ring
- $40-60 price range of mortarboard cap, gown and tassel for local high school seniors (cost depends on vendor and high school)
- $19.99 cost of mortarboard cap, gown and tassel at www.gradshop.com
- 10.26% high school dropout rate (2012);
- 83.57% high school graduation rate (2012); >0.75% from 2011
General studies is the most popular major for Frederick Community College graduates.
- 2 hours average length of college graduation ceremony
- 15 minutes average length of college graduation speakers’ keynote address
$24,000 the average college student loan debt in 2012
1,009 number of graduation candidates from Frederick Community College (2013)
Half of student loan accounts are in deferred status because more than half of college graduates under the age of 25 are either unemployed or underemployed
- $7,993 average public, four-year undergraduate, in-state published tuition and fees for fiscal year 2011-2012; 3.3% increase over fiscal year 201-2011
- $34,269 average public, nonprofit, four-year graduate, in-state published tuition and fees for fiscal year 2011-2012; 4.3% increase over fiscal year 2010-2011
- Balfour CNN Money
- Economic Policy Institute
- Frederick Community College
- Frederick County Public Schools
- Herff Jones
- Hood College
- Institute for College Access and Success
- Maryland State Department of Education
- Mount St. Mary’s University
- National Association of Colleges & Employers
- The College Board
- The Washington Post
- U.S. Bureau of Labor & Statistics
- U.S. Census Bureau
- USA Today
Basketball coaching legend Tom Dickman’s playbook prepares his teams for success on and off the court.
By Adam Kulikowski
Tom Dickman still has the notebook he kept during his senior season at Shepherd University. Recorded on the yellowed pages are his scribbled observations on coaching styles. It was 1971, the year Dickman became serious about pursuing a future as a basketball coach. He started learning the trade by studying the game and watching coaches he admired. When he graduated, he began his odyssey as an assistant at Governor Thomas Johnson (TJ) High School in Frederick.
A year later, Dickman became the head coach at TJ.
“Once I decided that was what I wanted to do, I really wanted to be good at it,” Dickman recalls. “I would go to clinics, watch coaches who had been in the game a long time. To be honest, that was my thing. That was my profession — my hobby. That’s what I did when my family went on vacation; they would go sit on the beach and I would sit somewhere where I could ‘X’ and ‘O’ and prepare for the season coming up.”
He stayed at TJ for nearly 30 years, achieving a record number of victories, winning numerous championships and, most importantly, changing the lives of hundreds of student-athletes both on and off the court — and on the path to becoming a local coaching legend.
“He’s a great teacher,” declares Terry Connolly, a former standout player under Dickman. “He really teaches the game. He breaks it down in the simplest terms. He makes it easy for his players to understand. He also teaches life lessons, how he approaches practice and how he wants his kids to approach practices, and the games teach you about everyday life.”
Thanks to Dickman’s coaching, many of TJ’s grads were recruited by dozens of collegiate basketball programs, including the University of Maryland, Penn State University and the University of Pittsburgh.
His efforts paid off handsomely on the court as well. Dickman-led teams racked up 592 wins, seven state championships and 18 league championships.
The boisterous coach is known for his team’s lockdown, pressing defense, but it isn’t what sets him apart from other coaches, according to former TJ and Hood College player, Darnell Edmonds. “I think what sets Coach Dickman aside from other coaches is that he is very well prepared in his planning,” Edmonds says. “He always had a good idea of what he was going to see. During the game, he was very good at changing the game plan during live play. He was able to rework things and that’s what continues to make him effective.”
Indeed, the examples are many.
Dickman reminisces about the 1997 state championship squad he led — one that featured future NBA power forward Terence Morris and Dickman’s two sons, Chad and Adam.
He remembers that team which faced five teams in the USA Today “Top 20.” And he remembers that team reaching the Class 3A state championship game where it faced Paul Laurence Dunbar High School. His country-based team upset the city boys of Dunbar, cruising to a 31-point victory. It is a memory Dickman cherishes.
And it’s one he took with him when he embarked on a new challenge in 2003 — head coach of the Hood College men’s basketball team — a team that didn’t exist when Dickman signed on. Founded in 1893 as a women’s college, male students had been part of Hood’s student population since 1971, but they weren’t allowed to live on campus until the college became fully coeducational the year Dickman arrived.
“It piqued my interest to start a program from scratch,” Dickman says of the move from one of the best high school programs in Maryland. “I have no regrets. If I hadn’t, I would have kicked myself in the tail because I enjoyed it. The people at Hood really appreciate the type of program we established.”
In that first season at the college, Dickman’s troops earned a winning record, 13-11 overall. “That was a huge step,” Dickman says, “to be able to have a winning season in the first year. We had no uniforms, no equipment. I thought we had basketballs. When I came the first week of school, I realized that they were all girls’ balls. It was a whole other experience for me. It was a whole new experience for the school and all the guys we recruited. But we grew together.”
During the last decade, Dickman adjusted to the differences in the college game — the shot clock and longer games. He’s transitioned well, notching more than 130 victories, and earned the title CAC Coach of the Year for the 2006-2007 season, after he led Hood to its first ever NCAA Tournament berth.
And he’s loved every moment.
“I never in my 40 years dreaded going to work one day,” Dickman says. “It is always something I look forward to. For most people, the winters drag by, but for me, they fly. There is always a practice to prepare for, another game to get ready for. In any coaching situation, there are personal situations to deal with — always something on your plate.”
And always another student-athlete to mold.
By Jennifer Gerlock
What’s the best April Fools’ prank you’ve pulled off?
Although April Fools’ Day origins are enshrouded in mystery, for the eager prankster, nothing beats the centuries-old tradition of playing practical jokes on unsuspecting family, friends and co-workers.
April Fools’ Day, also known as All Fools’ Day, is observed in most countries on April 1.
The odd tradition resembles festivals such as the Hilaria of ancient Rome and India’s Holi celebration. Most experts, however, credit Pope Gregory XIII, who, in the 1500s, gave the world the Gregorian calendar, effectively changing the New Year from April 1 to Jan. 1 — those slow to hear the news were outed as “fools.”
Of course, the real problem with explaining April Fools’ Day origins is that you never know when someone is trying to fool you with an explanation.
No matter. The real fun, as we all know, is executing successful pranks. We queried Frederick residents about the best April Fools’ Day joke they have played or had played on them.
“April 1, 2000 is the day I started my company, Octavo Designs. That probably explains why we are so goofy!” / Sue_Hough, Middletown
“One year, my mother and father burst into [both my bedroom] and my sister’s bedroom and shouted, ‘You’re late for school! Get up! Get up!’ Of course, we got up and put our clothes on and were running out the door and never even noticed it was Saturday, April 1st. I think we were both in elementary school.” / Eli_Roth, Frederick
“I can pretty much be told anything and I’ll believe it, at least initially. I was in Breckenridge, Colorado last April 1st and the entire front page of the local paper was bogus – like ridiculously bogus. The amount of reading I did before realizing I was being punked was just embarrassing. Nothing sounded right, but it was early and I had no idea it was April 1st. The main headline stated that Breckenridge was going to use mini zeppelins to float cyclists over sections of a bike path under construction – and I didn’t blink.” / Sean_Quill, Shookstown
“I haven’t but I wish I had pictures of what a friend of mine did to his co-worker! He built a wall over the door to an office. He even installed a working electrical outlet and put in a mini fridge. The victim, who thought it was hilarious, had to enter his office through a crawl space and wasn’t seen for much of the day. It took all night but my friend made an entire office disappear!” / Cathy_Gurski, Frederick
“My birthday is actually on April Fools’ Day. In the seventh grade, I was living in India and my birthday fell on a school day. I had asked a few of my friends to have lunch with me in the school dining hall. Our food was always sent from home. My brothers took the opportunity and filled the tiffin carrier with stones and leaves.” / Shabham_Samuel, Frederick
“I don’t think I have ‘pranked’ anyone or been ‘pranked.’ Wow! Maybe it’s time to live a little!” / Rona_Mensah, Frederick
“In 2004, I asked one of my closest friends to be my best man. After some discussion as to why I didn’t choose one of my brothers for this duty, he enthusiastically accepted and said he would be honored. April Fools! I then informed him that I had in fact already asked my brother Tim. I made it up to him a few years later by asking him to be the godfather of my first child.” / Delegate Patrick_Hogan, (R) District 3A, Frederick
“Early in my career, I worked in a place that had several radio stations of various formats in the same building. The operations manager issued an annual, fairly stern warning the last week in March, and again on the last day of March: ‘Be aware that April Fools’ pranks on the air will not be tolerated and are subject to disciplinary action.’ Well, he said, ‘on the air.’ A couple DJs from the various stations put our heads together and recorded a 30-minute ‘show’ in which all three of us … country, rock and Top 40 were ‘taking over’ and making the town one big party. In the fake show, we played the hardest of the rock, the hip-hoppiest of the Top 40 and the most classic of country .. the stuff that would be absurd on the other stations. After we knew the boss was in the building and the morning shows were finished, we had the engineers switch the building’s internal audio, which played one of our stations, to the fake audio. We recorded portions of our real shows and left the studios unmanned. When the audio switch happened, boss man went into every studio to put a stop to it, only to hear something other than the ‘big party’ broadcast … a twist we didn’t plan … but it made him even more confused. I’ve never seen someone more irate and red in the face – totally worth the write-up we got in our personnel files!” / David_Gunning, Frederick
Culinary expert and registered dietitian Amanda Archibald believes food, rather than laughter, is the best medicine.
By Kelly Brooks
Photos by Andrew Murdock
One by one, the women gather around the kitchen table. Ducking in from the cold, rainy evening, we eagerly munch on a veggie spread with homemade hummus and settle in to talk about that most delicious and difficult topic: food.
It’s our first class in the five-part “Hearth to Health” course that promises to explain basic nutrition science and give us hands-on cooking practice, too. Our host, New Market resident and registered dietitian Amanda Archibald, is there to help us bridge the “no-man’s land, the synaptic gap” that occurs when doctors or dietitians give us science-based diet advice, and then we go home, look in the fridge and have no idea what to cook.
Most of us are here for our health. Elena wants to kick her acid reflux prescription; Connie’s so sensitive to medications she can’t take most pills. Casey has had to eat gluten-free foods for more than 20 years, and I’ve recently gone vegan after watching the documentaryForks Over Knives. Judy, who owns a local organic farm, wants to be able to connect her customers to better nutrition information and resources, and Christine, who owns The Kitchen Studio where we are meeting, is “trying not to be my dad and take 1,000 pills every day.”
We all have questions: Is eating organic actually more nutritious than non-organic? What’s all the hype we hear about omega-3s? How do you eat healthy on a budget? How can I squeeze food prep into my crazy schedule?
For the next 90 minutes, surrounded by gleaming stainless steel appliances and stacks of muffin tins, serving trays and food processers, we listened while Archibald cut through the hype and focused on the food facts. By the end of the evening, we were able to piece together how all the different health tidbits we’d heard – such as the importance of leafy greens, probiotics and omega-3s – fit together to create a nutritious diet. And we were juiced up to come back for the next four classes, where we’ll get to prepare some of the foods we’d talked about that evening.
I called Archibald after class to get the skinny on Hearth to Health.
Q: What is “Hearth to Health” all about?
A: I will do anything to help people get back into the kitchen! Reclaiming the kitchen space is the only way you’ll truly own your health, your diet and your life.
You can be a gourmet chef, or you can have no culinary skills or nutrition knowledge and be scared to death. You’ll learn simple deeply nourishing meals that use one burner, one pot or pan, a knife and chopping board.
The goal is to take you through how food works in your body and look at what you need to eat regardless of whether you’re healthy or sick.
Q: How did you come up with this idea?
A: The day that I graduated with a degree in dietetics, I was an expert in the interpretation of clinical nutritional science, but I couldn’t talk to people about food.
I realized that nurses, doctors or dietitians will talk with the voice of science and explain to you, clinically, what’s wrong with you, but they won’t get you excited about food. I wanted to answer the question: What will help Americans make food make sense?
Q: What does that mean: “make food make sense”?
A: I grew up in the UK with a stepfather who is a French wine expert. We were exposed to an amazing table, and he was very influential in helping shine a different lens on food. He gave me a lecture one day and said, “Wine has its own vocabulary, arms, legs, a soul and a voice.”
I thought that was interesting, so when I started looking at food, I wanted to tell stories — beyond the simple science — to make food come alive for people. I want people to get it, embrace it and feel like it’s important in their lives.
Q: Why is food important?
A: Because food is nutrition. The Hearth to Health program is about deeply understanding your body’s system and how food fits into that. It goes way beyond giving you a list of foods to eat.
Meanwhile, the medical field is moving toward integrative medicine. Doctors aren’t just treating your symptoms anymore; they’re looking for the root of the problem, which i often nutrition, environmental exposure or both. I’m here to help you taste the science that your doctor keeps talking to you about.
Q: Where can I learn Hearth to Health cooking?
A: In Frederick, you can take the entire Hearth to Health series at The Kitchen Studio. I’ll also offer the course in a shorter format at The Common Market and other locations.
Plans for the future include teaching Hearth to Health online via live video chat. You can set your iPad or computer up in the kitchen. You can see me cooking, and you can cook right along. I’ll be able to see all the students and answer questions right from my kitchen. I also plan to bring in guest chefs and nutrition experts from around the country into these online forums.
I love to see folks sign up for my classes, but in the end, I don’t care what class they attend. Wherever they learn their skills, whatever gets them in the kitchen, I’m all about it.
Culinary expert Amanda Archibald of New Market is the founder and owner of Field to Plate, a visionary and nationally acclaimed food education company that marries the science of nutrition with the art of the kitchen to create a flavorful experience of food, nourishment, health and the environment. With her cooking skill and nutritional know-how, Archibald’s Hearth to Health classes teach you how to use food as medicine and create tasty meals in 30 minutes or less.
Hearth to Health Series
- Intro Class: $20
- Deep Clean, High Octane Cuisine: $70
- Omega-3 Cuisine: $70
- Slow Food Cuisine: $70
- Build Your Best Defense Cuisine: $70
- Or take all 5 classes: $260
To learn more, visit www.FieldToPlate.com.
Downtown Frederick, it seems, should be ashamed of itself.
By Matt Edens
“My Rent is Too Damned High.” That’s what the bumper sticker says on the car I often park behind on Klinehart Alley (as Court Street becomes after it crosses 4th Street). The proclamation, according to the URL in the sticker’s lower-right corner, comes courtesy of an organization called Unsettle Frederick.
An offshoot of the Occupy movement (yes, it’s still around, apparently), the group appears mostly concerne with foreclosures, the financial crisis and the cozy relationship between the U.S. Treasury Department and our nation’s biggest banks (please refer to Matt Taibbi’s reporting in Rolling Stone if you want to read up …). And their first newsletter did contain some fairly detailed — and, as far as I could tell, fairly factual — information on Maryland’s role in the 2012 relief settlement between the federal government and the nation’s five largest lenders.
Lenders aren’t the only targets of Occupy’s ire, however. The group also goes after gentrification, singling it out as the prime beneficiary of the sub-prime mortgage market, which supposedly spawned “a whole economy centered on Lowes, Home Depot, Restoration Hardware, Starbucks, art galleries and cute restaurants.” Downtown Frederick, it seems, should be ashamed of itself. (Although railing against “cute restaurants” didn’t stop the Occupiers from leaving a stack of newsletters in the foyer of Café Nola ….)
Personally, I’m not sure what was more unsettling. Was it suddenly finding myself — and a good many of my friends and neighbors — cast as the villains of the piece? Or was it realizing how much the Occupy rhetoric has in common with the sort of stuff tea partyers spout? Neither one is all that fond of the Historic Preservation Commission (but, in fairness, I don’t recall a tea party supporter going so far as denouncing the commission members as “dirtbags” — at least not in print). And both are worried about how “African people are dispersed further and further into decaying suburbs” (although perhaps for different reasons …).
But the thing that mystifies me most about all the rhetoric over the rich pushing the poor out is how, while anecdotes abound, downtown’s “gentrification” is barely a blip in the census data. A full generation after the 1976 flood generally reckoned as both the nadir and the turning point of downtown Frederick’s fortunes, median household income for the core of downtown, according to the most recent 2011 American Community Survey, has yet to break into the middle of the pack of city census tracts. Clocking in with a median household income of $56,010, the core of the Historic District between Carroll Creek and 4th Street (Census Tract 7502), has only just managed to nudge ahead of Hillcrest’s median of $55,907 (Tract 7505.05) but falls a good two grand short of Prospect Boulevard’s median of $58,843 (Tract 7651).
And the north end, where my car’s parked behind the one with the Unsettle sticker? Well, the area between 4th and 7th streets (Tract 7501) remains the second poorest census tract in the entire county. In fact, compared to earlier 2009 estimates, the area’s median household income has actually gone down slightly. And one reason may be that, while 100 units of new housing are being built around the intersection of Klinehart Alley and 6th Street, the first half to be built — and the first to be “occupied” — was 50 units of affordable housing.