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Golfing Highlights

Possible change of venue for Hammer Tournament

By Ed Townsend
Posted 8/26/21

The popular Hammer Outing Tournament was not held in 2020 because of the Pandemic and there will be no tournament this golf season as tournament organizer Susan Hamlin indicated this week that, …

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Golfing Highlights

Possible change of venue for Hammer Tournament


The popular Hammer Outing Tournament was not held in 2020 because of the Pandemic and there will be no tournament this golf season as tournament organizer Susan Hamlin indicated this week that, “we couldn't come together with dates and facility catering plans, but, we definitely are looking to starting it up again next year with maybe a change of venue.”

The Hammer Outing originally came about when Keith Hamlin expressed a desire to hold an outing to share the many pleasant memories of past “Friends of the Links” and was originally held honoring, with the admittance (induction) of Harold Reynolds, Fred Stabbert Jr., Alice Steinberg and R. D. Yaun into that beautiful course in heaven with the mystical name Valhalla Course in the land of Asgard (the highest heaven obtainable and reserved for only the most noble men and women.

The Hammer Outing was held at the Sullivan County Country Club in Liberty.

The lore and traditions of the annual Hammer Outing brought tournament golf to what could easily be called a look at a mystical golf course in Heaven where there is reality and faith combined for past “Friends of the Links.”

The Hammer Outing was the realization of the thoughts and words of the late Keith “Hammer” Hamlin and the combined efforts of his family and many friends.

Keith was a well-known and highly respected contractor doing business as the Hamlin Construction Co. and loved the game of golf where he achieved the nickname of “Hammer” for the way he drove the ball down the fairway.

The Hammer Outing truly fulfilled Keith's desire.

The Hammer Outing as described in the Lore and Traditions of the Hammer Outing is an outing that takes place on the fields of play “that so many of us have walked, talked, and played upon together,” and “shall be an outing of joy, not remorse, an outing of brother and sisterhood, an outing to renew old friendships.”
As to the “past” Friends of the Links, the Lore and Traditions of this event tell the story of the man who asked his priest to find out if there was a golf course in heaven, and the priest came back to him with good and bad news by saying there was a course in heaven and it was beautiful but the bad news was the man was teeing off at 7 a.m. the next morning.

The Lore and Traditions point out that it has been left to “The Hammer” to find that beautiful course in Heaven and that the mystical course is called the Valhalla Course.

Keith, as would be expected, has a high seat on the governing board (Ting) at Valhalla and has let it be known that he has made arrangements for his past “Friends of the Links” to be admitted, as member, at this enchanting Links course.

The use of the word “Ting” comes from the fact that leaders of the villages in ancient times in the Celtic lands, The Isles, and parts of Europe held meetings to resolve issues of the day and these meetings were called (Tings) or things.

At each future Hammer Outing an additional foursome was called to the Tee Box and honored as such and these players will be drawn from the roster of “Friends of the Links” that was established at the 1st annual Hammer Outing held October 8, 2007.

The Lore and Traditions point out that the word Asgard is described as "the highest realm in Nordic Lore, where the Gods dwell, the word Ting is the Nordic term for a council and Friends of the Links are honorable men and women who have shared the pleasure of golf together on earth.

This tournament has a unique trophy called appropriately "The Hammer Trophy" which is awarded to the champions but is immediately returned to its resting place, secured and sealed and kept in the Liberty Sullivan County Golf & Country Club Pro Shop. The trophy symbolizes the powerful nature that was Keith's. He is called by all those who knew him as a true gentleman and outstanding businessman.

The trophy presentation followed strict guidelines with the Hammer of Thor being removed from its place of stature, by a worthy representative (Keith’s widow Susan Hamlin, presently performs this honor) and the trophy is presented to the chosen captain and teammates of the victorious team. The team, as one, shall hoist the Hammer skyward together and it will be held skyward until a toast, to all that have departed to play on the field of Heaven, has been offered.

The trophy was then immediately returned by the champions' captain to its resting place where it is secured and sealed, only to be removed at the next Hammer Outing.

Since the tournament is played at the nine-hole (alternating tees for the second nine) Sullivan County Golf & Country Club course, there are more players than available slots and golfers are accepted in the order their RSVP’s are received.

The tournament format followed each year stated that golfers submit their individual application with their current handicap and that teams are then established by the “Ting” whereby each foursome will include an A, B, C and D player based on handicaps and there are no established teams allowed to enter this tournament.
The Hammer Outing was for all golfers in the Sulivan County area and is not exclusive to Sullivan County Golf & Country Club members. This tournament always used the best ball format.

The future of the Hammer Outing now remains in the hands of the tournament organizers who have indicated a possible change of venue.

Ed’s Outlook
Signs of the season

When we get notices from golf league managers that they are sending us final league standings and playoffs are starting this week it’s a true sign of the approaching fall months and the end of the Sullivan County golf season for 2021.

Chuck Husson, manager of the 2021 Community Golf League notified us he is sending us regular season final standings and that four weeks of playoffs started last night.

The regular season final standings finds the team of Thomas and Husson in first place with 185.50 points and the team of Kuhn and Martin in second place with 171 points. The playoffs will determine overall league champions.

In the Tarry Brae Tuesday Men’s league management of the league has several rain-outs they are trying to complete before playoffs (which includes all league teams) can start. The team of Delacruz and Garia presently lead the league in regular league standings.

Over at the Swan Lake Golf & Country Club in the Tuesday Night Birdie Division the team of D. Luczynski and M. Garigliano lead the league followed by Todd and Taylor VanKeuren, in the Tuesday Night Par Division K. Wheeler and S. Hamlin lead all golfers followed closely by T. Gallo and C. Roth, in the Wednesday Night Men's league R. Schmidt and B. Russell have a short lead over F. Barrett and D. Hendrickson.

Up at the Tennanah Lake Thursday Men's Palmer Div., Walsh and Simpson have a short lead for first place over Bowers and Edwards.

All league standings are indicated from standings posted Friday, August 20.

Golf calendar
Sept. 3: Inaugural Do Good Golf Outing, Tennanah Lake, Visit DoGoodSpirits.com.
Sept. 5: Sullivan West Football Tournament, Tennanah Lake, contact 607-498-5000.
Sept. 11: Monticello Rotary, contact Tarry Brae 845-434-2620.
Sept. 12: 1 p.m. Jeffersonville Lions Club, Swan Lake Golf Club, contact Doug Immoor 482-4061.
Sept. 18: A.O.H. Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day. 11 a.m start. contact Ed O’Malley, Swan Lake Golf Club 845-649-0911.
Sept. 19: Liberty Faculty Association 11 a.m. start, Swan Lake Golf Club, contact Liz Fuentes 631-560-6866.
Sept. 25: Monticello Basketball 11 a.m. start at Swan Lake Golf Club, contact Chris Russo 551-655-8281.
Oct. 2: Summitville FD, Tarry Brae, contact Tim Koestler 888-2007.
Oct. 9: County Cup, Tarry Brae, contact 845-434-2620.

Ed Townsend is a Public Relations Consultant to the sport of golf and brings over 60-years of sports journalism experience in writing and compiling the information for this column. If you have league or tournament information, shoot a hole-in-one or score you age let Ed know at 845-439-8177, email to bght75@gmail.com or fax to 845-205-4474. View this column at http://bght.blogspot.com We are also on Facebook and Twitter.


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