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February 17, 2006     Cape Gazette
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February 17, 2006

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I II m CAPE GAZETYE, Friday, Feb. 17 - Monday, Feb. 20, 2006 - 149 Golf buddies whoop it up with winter golf Some women golfers have all the fun. At least, that's what it looks like when you see them playing together. A dozen or so Cape Region ladies are having a great time with their new winter league. They're using the golf simulator at Clubhouse Golf, hosted by store owner Ed Larkins. The Computerized system is tucked in the back left comer of the store. A projector splashes an image of a golf hole onto a large screen, and the players hit real golf balls with real clubs directly at the image. The computer calcu- lates the shot results, and it's sur- prisingly realistic. Bonnie Quesenberry of Rehoboth was at the tee when I visited the group on a recent Tuesday night. "I just started play- ing golf last April. We were in a women's league at Marsh Island [Golf Course] all summer. They closed down 9 holes for us, and we had a shotgun start. Sometimes we played best ball, sometimes capture the flag, and sometimes straight golf. We had up to 52 players sometimes." "For this winter league, six of us show up two nights per week, and we play a scramble. I'm learn- ing a lot," Quesenberry said. Mary Ann Slinkman said she's played .golf since she was 15, about 40 years ago. She moved to the Cape Region a year ago, and during the season she plays at "the Rookery and everywhere else." Slinkman is one of the better league players, with an admitted 20 handicap. When I asked her if GOLF Fritz Schranck she used her own clubs, she laughed and showed me her grass-stained sand wedge. Fay Jacobs, well-known direc- tor of Rehoboth Beach Main Street, is an enthusiastic rookie. "I love it - I'm horrible at it, but I love it. This is like my Outward Bound tiring. I'm going to stick this out.". Jacobs said that when she began playing in the Marsh Island league, her plans didn't include this kind of commitment. "I was thinking I could get a column out of it [for her series in the Letters from CAMP Rehoboth maga- zine]. But it was so much fun I kept up with it. Then I saw the FJ symbol, and now I have it on everything," she said, proudly displaying her Foot-Joy golf glove. Jacobs said she loves playing in the winter league. "There are no bugs. There's no heat. There are no snakes. And, you can shop between your shots," she laughed. Frlllz Schranck photo A fun-loving group of Cape Region golfers play in a winter golf league at Clubhouse Golf on Rehoboth Avenue. Some of the regulars are (l-r) Fay Jacobs, Bonnie Quesenberry, Pam Kozey, Sharon Hansen and Mary Ann SHnkman, all shown here with store owner Ed Larkins. Sharon Hansen of near Milton played golf for more than 20 years. She missed much of last summer while battling cancer, but for several years before then she held an active membership at The Rookery. Hansen has a great sense of humor, despite her recent health troubles. At one point, Slinkman duffed a shot, and asked the group if her ball had gone into the green- side bunker. Hanson immediately piped up in a high falsetto, "Am I in the bunker? Oh prithee, prithee, could that be?" and burst out laughing. Slinkman then grinned and told the other women, "I don't care if she's a survivor. I'm taking her out." Pam Kozey of Breezewood took lessons a dozen years ago and played for a while, but then left the game. She recently returned to the sport, and is thor- oughly enjoying herself. "During the season I play at Baywood, Salt Pond, and The Rookery. My handicap is a lot," she laughed. "I love this winter golf, too. It's fun - it's not real golf but it's fun. I think it's also really helping me hit the ball better, because you can see the swing path after the shot. I just hope it carries over to when we go outside." The other wintertime golfers include Deb Qualey, Karen Gustafson, Marti Austin, Patti McGee, Anita Pettitt, Barb Thompson, Evie Simms, Carole Bradt, and Barb Keck. Kozey also credited Larkins in explaining why the group enjoyed their twice-weekly rounds. "The other part that's so nice about this is that Ed is so great. He sits and watches us and gives us tips. lie's really nice." I'm not sure, but I think she made Larkins blush when she said that. LEWES PARK FUNDRAIS- ING TOURNEY , The Lewes Carlalfront Park will hold a fundraising golf tournament on Wednesday, Sept. 15 at Shawnee Country Club. For more information on regis- tration and sponsorship opportu- nities, contact the park office at 645-2795, or by email at canal- par' SHORT PUTTS - The golf course hole-by-hole handicap allocation service can be accessed at Send news about local tournaments, charity golf events, holes-in-one and other golf news to fschranck or Pressure is on to keep hunting and fishing areas open HUNTING AND FISHING LICENSE MEETINGS - While I was unable to attend any of the recent meetings held by the state division of fish and wildlife on the new hunting and fishing license fees, I am told by a reliable source they went remarkably well. In the Dover meeting 35 people attended, about the same as the meeting in Georgetown. In new Castle County there were 50 peo- ple reflecting the fact that New Castle County is more densely populated. Also in New Castle County some hunters were in the audience but their comments were more about the loss of habitat than the new hunting license fees. A few New Jersey Fish and Wildlife officials came to the New Castle County meeting to find out what Delaware is proposing. As expected, there were some suggestions for exceptions includ- ing a boat license and for holders of surf fishing permits. Some out- of-state fishermen did not like the idea of finally having to pay for all the Delaware resources they have taken for free over all these years. Some comments were in support and some were opposed. I have no idea if and when the OUTDOORS Eric Burnley bill to accomplish all of these changes will appear before the legislature and in what form it will finally be presented to the governor. There will be other chances for the public to com- ment and you can always write your representative or senator. That is what I plan to do once we have a bill to comment on. HUNTING DISCUSSION - In recent weeks there have been some letters to the editor concern- ing the photo of a young lady and the deer she killed during the hunting season. I support the right to legally hunt and fish and to have access to public lands. I was raised in a hunting and fish- ing family and lived in an area where I could do both with little inconvenience. Such is not the case for many young people today. In fact, someone living in my childhood home in Claymont could no longer hunt the field between my house and the Delaware River because 1-495, not a river, runs through it. The old creek between Ashbome Hills and Brookview Apartments has been paved with concrete and no longer holds sunfish, pickerel and mill roach, the staples of my young fishing career. Hunting and fishing license sales are on a downward trend as fewer young people take up the sport and replace the old folks as they die off. I am fortunate that both of my sons are avid out- doorsmen, but then they were raised in the tradition. What we have today is a culture where hunters and fishermen are a very small minority. We only have political power because we supply the money to run various fish and wildlife departments on both the state and federal level. And just to make things worse, the Vice President has gone and shot a lawyer. I can't wait to see how the NRA spins that. But I digress. Hunters and fish- ermen have many enemies out there that would take our ability to hunt and fish away. They vary from outright hate groups like PETA, to more subtle attacks from groups like the Sierra Club. While I have never met face to face with PETA, I have sat with representatives from the Sierra Club and other so-called environ- mental groups as we discussed such things as Marine Protected Areas (MPA). These folks want to create places in the ocean and bays where no one would be allowed to enter, let alone fish. They oppose such things as dredging the Assawoman Canal and sinking artificial reefs, all of which are in opposition to the hunting and fish- ing community. The general public could care less about hunting and fishingand if put to vote, I suspect we would lose big time. Because of this, we must not give the so-called envi- ronmentalists or animal rights groups any ammunition to use against us. We must be as pure as Cesar's wife. When a poacher is apprehended and the story appears in the newspaper or on TV he or she is described as a hunter. The same is true when someone breaks fishery laws; they call the felon a fisherman. As more habitats disappears in Sussex County and more city folk move here we are going to be under continuing pressure to keep our hunting and fishing areas open. In fact, we are going to have problems jus t trying to maintain our right to fish and hunt. Hunting and fishing groups that do good deeds in the community are a big help in our public rela- tions, but as the number of hunters and fishermen decline these groups too will disappear. I wish I had a solution to these problems, but I don't. EricBurnley, is a fulltime out- doors writer who lives between Milton and Lewes. He can be contacted by email Eburnle @ aol. com.