What’s old is new again . . .

Many years ago, while perusing the merchandise at a local charity thrift
store, I spotted a barrel of miscellaneous golf clubs priced at $5.
I tend to think along the lines of “you never know if you don’t look,” so I
proceeded to check out the clubs. In fact, over the years, I have found a
number of useful, inexpensive clubs at thrift stores and garage sales.
It’s amazing what kind of good golf stuff you can find that way. Garage
sales are particularly good because, unfortunately for people holding the
sales, they don’t always know the value of the golf gear they are selling,
unfortunate for them but not the golfer hunting for a good deal.
I came across one at the thrift store that intrigued me, a “chipper-putter,”
a club I had never specifically heard of before.
It has a putter face and weight but a 34-degree loft, similar to a 7-iron.

My interest grew and I figured, what the heck, for $5 it’s worth a try.
When I got home, I did a little research and discovered that the club – it
goes by many names – is used primarily for short chip shots around the
green when you don’t need loft but you do want a club that gives you good
control over your shot.

My $5 thrift store discovery

I had always dealt with the challenge – not always successfully – of
performing a successful chip that would get me close to the hole.
My choice was usually a wedge or maybe a 7-iron. I eventually settled
on the 7-iron, which gave me a bit less loft and also got the ball back on the
putting surface in a hurry so I could better control the roll.
Using a wedge had sometimes resulted in good shots, but also ones that
ended woefully short or long.
I found the chipper-putter allowed me to get the ball in the air, in a lower,
controlled manner, and after a lot of practice I was getting the ball close
enough to one-putt, often to save par.
I also found that it is effective in moving the ball out of light rough, much
better than a regular 7-iron.
I now consider it one of the most important clubs in my bag, one that has
saved me a lot of shots over the years.

That club and the left-handed club I put in my bag to handle situations
when my ball was up against a tree or fence, etc. and using a right-handed
club was difficult, were great additions.
But the other day I got an email from Ping praising a “new” product that
“could benefit upwards of one-third of the golfing population.”

Ping’s new “ChipR”club

According to the email, which featured a short item that appeared in
Golf Magazine:
“How many shots do you typically waste around the green? Chances are
more than you’d like to admit — and we’re not talking about short-sided flop
shots with a high degree of difficulty. Stub a few routine chip shots and
things can go south in a hurry.
“Thankfully, Ping is here to save the day with a club that, according to
recent research, could benefit upwards of one-third of the golfing
“With a shallow face height that falls between a putter and a wedge, the
new ChipR is geared for shots within 40 yards of the green from the rough
or fringe. Simply apply a putting-like stroke to get the ball airborne with little
effort. It’s the kind of club that could no doubt become your go-to option for
those no-brainer chip shots.
“To keep the head from digging into the turf at impact, Ping added a
cambered sole that promotes consistent contact. It’s paired with the
company’s MicroMax grooves for spin control around the green and a
composite cavity badge to enhance feel at impact. Weighting along the
perimeter of the club ensures you don’t have to be deadly accurate.”

A 7-iron loft is 34 degrees, while a 9-iron is 41 degrees. Pitching wedges
are 45-50 degrees, gap wedges 50-54 and lob wedges 58-64. Pro Phil
Mickelson, who hits amazing wedge shots that fly high and land soft, uses
a 64-degree lob wedge.

It looks like a good club to have, but I’m happy I already got a
comparable club that cost me $5 instead of the $195 Ping price tag.

32nd Annual Charity Tournament
Friday, Sept. 30, at Windsor GC
Sponsor a Hospitality Hole!
Become a Corporate Sponsor!
Join us and become a hero for Sonoma County Youth. Your support
directly impacts youth in our community and provides them with
opportunities to participate in programs like camp, water safety, early
learning, and teen leadership!

Schedule of Events
11:00 AM: Registration Opens
11:00 AM – 12:30 PM: Lunch will be provided; driving range will open
12:45 PM: Shotgun Start; Hospitality Hole fun
5:30 PM: Cocktails; Raffle Drawing; Silent Auction Bidding
6:00 PM: Dinner (guests are welcome!); Recognition/Awards; Silent
Registration Details
Limited space, all registration must be in no later than September 27.

$185 – Individual(after 9/2)
$680 – Foursome (after 9/2)
For more information, contact Michelle Head, Sonoma County
YMCA: or (707) 545-9622, x3120

Fall Clinic Schedule

Join the Clinics at Santa Rosa CC. “It’s a great way to sharpen your
skills and perfect your short game,” says Jessica Quayle.

All Clinics 2.5 Hours of instruction and have a limit of 8 students.
Clinics taught by Jessica Quayle and assistant. 4 to 1 Student

Teacher Ratio. Email Jessica directly at
9/29: Improvement Strategies. Clinic Focused OnThe Driver, Pre
Shot Routine And Alignment, And Short Pitches. Goal Of This Class
Is To Find More Fairways With More Accuracy And Get Your Soft

High Pitches Closer To The Hole. 9:30-12

10/16: Short Game Bootcamp #1 Topics include Chipping, Pitching,
And Putting. Designed To Give You The Foundation To Dramatically

Lower Scores. 9:30-12

10/27: On Course Clinic On Course Instruction. Focus Of The Class
is Course Management, Green Reading, And Un-Even Lies. Class

Starts At 9:00 Bring Entire Bag. 9-11:30

10/28: Short Game Bootcamp #1Topics include Chipping, Pitching,
And Putting. Designed To Give You The Foundation To Dramatically

Lower Scores. 9:30-12.

30th Annual U.V.A.H. Scramble Golf

Saturday, October 1st

A benefit for Ukiah Valley Association for Habilitation

$100 per golfer
Price includes: BBQ Luncheon & 18 holes of golf
Make up your own team or be assigned
Team captain will be the main contact person

Click here to find out more about our great courses!


For more information call Dorianne Tanaka at (707) 468-8824

Let’s hear from you . . .

Thanks for your comments, questions and suggestions. I appreciate