St. Cloud golfer Peterka sums up the Minnesota summer tournament

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Tom Peterka is preparing for a round of golf at Pebble Creek GC in Becker.

The back of his white Ram pickup was loaded like a golf pro shop with clubs, hats, polo shirts, shoes, umbrellas and windbreakers. That spring and summer, he made weekly trips that added thousands of miles to the truck’s odometer to play courses in the following cities: Battle Lake, Bemidji, Brainerd, Byron, Detroit Lakes, Fifty Lakes, Minneapolis, Moorhead, Nisswa , Pequot Lakes, Sauk Center, Stillwater and Walker.

There was rarely a tournament on the 2021 Minnesota Golf Association Senior Tour calendar that Wapicada’s 54-year-old member Tom Peterka, 67, didn’t go to this year.

Next Monday he will add another city, Blaine, to compete in the MGA Tour Finals at the TPC Twin Cities and on May 13-14. October to play.

More:Lieser: The Meadowlark County Club in Melrose is nine-hole golfing fun

He will then compete for the second time against Wisconsin’s top senior players at the Blackwolf Run, the Meadow Valleys complex located in another target city, Kohler.

This two-day interstate event (MGA / WSGA) will be held in the Semi-Ryder Cup format. Four ball competition teams on day one and match play competition on day two.

Who is this hiking golfer who loves to play, takes part in tournaments across the country and plays the senior game at a high level?

Peterka grew up in Pierz as the second of eight children of Chuck and Dorothy; His parents instilled in his altruism a compassionate concern for others, the worth of family and friends, and they were ideal role models for his strong work ethic. He learned to love the game on the picturesque and sophisticated 9-hole Pierz golf course.

In addition to golf, he was on the same pioneering elementary school basketball team with Pierz’s best-known native John Gerard Stumpf, 67, the former chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo.

When his parents moved to St. Cloud, he graduated from Apollo high school in 1972 and became passionate about golf while on the Eagle golf team. After high school, he went to the military and during his three year stay in Germany he met and married Christel, a local lady, and that 46 year old relationship resulted in two boys, Tom and Chris.

More:Lieser: Winner of the Central Minnesota Annual Golf Club Championship

In Germany he became an army medic. After serving, he became a nurse at St. Cloud Hospital for 10 years; He spent the last 31 years in St. Cloud VA as an addiction therapist until he retired in 2014.

Peterka has been active in the golf tournament scene for seven years. He was runner-up more than 40 times in tournaments.

As he reflected, “My second position in golf tournaments appears to be similar to the second birth in our family. At the MGA Northern Tour this year I also finished second in points. Next month in Wisconsin, our team is hoping to get out of second place and finish first with the MGA 12-man team in this badger versus gopher competition. “

With all of the competitive golf Peterka has played this summer, this team and individual goal could come into play from the eternal second to the first month of next month in Kohler.

Golf notes

Here are four other local golfers who qualified for the final of the MGA Senior Tour in Blaine on Monday: Mike Cleland, Ernie Bell, Terry Kurash and Glen Hasselberg.

The Pebble Creek Golf Club in Becker held its club tournament at the end of last month. Here are the champions:

  • Zach Johnson, men’s championship flight
  • Men’s Net Flight Champions: Greg Mattson, first; Mark Dunderi, second; Daniel Olson, third; Jim Anderson, fourth
  • Kathy Hollenhorst, Women’s Champion (gross)
  • Women’s Net Flight Champions: Denise Mason, first; Robin Dingman, second; Nicky Brunsberg, third
  • Ryker Stukenholtz, junior master of the boys
  • Alexa Voller, junior girl champion
  • Thomas May, junior U13 champion

Kimball Golf Club has announced its club champions: Luke Ashbrook, the winner of the Men’s Championship Flight, and Scott Fischer, Senior Men’s Champion.

According to the National Golf Foundation, there are nearly 6 million 18- to 34-year-olds who first played the game in 2020. That’s an optimistic outlook for the game, which was in decline before the pandemic broke out in the world last year. The key is to keep the momentum going with this demographic.

How Often Should You Replace Your Wedges? For many players it never is. Here are some answers from my reading. For the PGA Tour players, the most commonly changed wedge is the lob wedge. The praise wedge is the wedge between 58 and 64 degrees. Jordan Spieth, Ricky Fowler and Russel Henley change their praise wedges every two months.

David Neville, Marketing Manager for Vokey Wedges at Titleist, made wedges a science. He adjusts more than 200 golfers a year and recommends golfers who play once a week to change their wedges every two years. Most golfers who play regularly change irons every five years. As we approach fall, golfers might deal with changing wedges. It could be a Christmas present.

How long does a golf ball last? Recent research has shown that you can get seven rounds out of a golf ball before you notice a drop in performance, but of course that depends on what happens to it. If a tree or path is caught or worn out, that number goes down.

You should also think carefully about where to store your golf balls when winter approaches. If you expose them to excessive heat or cold, performance will deteriorate over time. Typically, golf balls last at room temperature for five to ten years, according to nationalclubgolfer.com.

Such is the opinion of The Times golf columnist John Lieser. Contact him at Jgl1943@gmail.com.

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