Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Poplar Grove Adds PGA TOUR Veteran as Golf Professional Emeritus, Director of Instruction

(AMHERST, Va.) – Poplar Grove Golf Club – Sam Snead’s final course design located in the rolling hills of beautiful southern Virginia – announces the addition of longtime PGA TOUR veteran Dick Mast as golf professional emeritus and director of instruction.

The Bluffton, Ohio native joins his son, Jacob, who was recently named head golf professional at Poplar Grove. The father/son duo will harmoniously handle all golf operations at the club. A significant part of Dick’s time will be spent playing with member groups and giving individual lessons as well as clinics to members and guests. In addition to these roles, Mast will represent Poplar Grove as he continues to compete on the PGA Tour Champions when his schedule allows.

“Poplar Grove is a remarkable Sam Snead design that will only continue to get better as renovations finish up,” says Dick Mast. “Between the opportunity to work with my son and all the exciting improvements in store for the club, I am thrilled to get to work to serve our members and guests.”

After turning pro in 1972, Mast has spent the last 45+ years competing on the PGA TOUR, Tour, PGA TOUR Champions and European Seniors Tour. He has accumulated more than 650 starts in his professional career, including four wins and 46 top-ten finishes. Since earning status on the PGA TOUR Champions in 2001, Mast has collected 52 top-25 and 16 top-ten results.

Poplar Grove is amid a $3 million renovation that includes re-building bunkers, teeing grounds and green complexes; updating drainage, clearing trees, remodeling practice areas and renovating cart paths with a new fleet of golf carts. The course will remain open for play during the project, with completion of phase I projected for early summer 2019.

The course restoration is being led by Ed Carton, a Virginia native who honed his craft under Tom Fazio, Michael Hurdzan, Gary Player and Raymond Floyd. Carton consulted closely with Snead when designing Poplar Grove and saw the project through to its finish in 2005, three years after “Slammin’ Sammy’s” passing at age 89.

The two also teamed up to design nearby Spring Creek in Charlottesville, one of Golf Digest’s “100 Greatest Public Courses in America.”  Poplar Grove, a Golf Digest “Best New Upscale Public Course” in 2005, is poised to return to its heyday under the close watch of Carton, the man who initially brought Snead’s blueprint to life.

Located in Amherst, Virginia, Poplar Grove is 20 and 45 minutes from Lynchburg and Charlottesville, respectively. The surrounding Blue Ridge foothills are alive with breweries, distilleries and wineries, constituting the perfect getaway for couples and buddy groups.

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