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A Course For Everyone

(November 5, 2021) – It was just after 8:30 a.m. on a chilly late October morning. A nor’ester had just finished rolling through the state the day before and it was just cold enough and late enough in the season that you might think the number of players teeing it up on a Thursday morning would be dwindling. The dedicated players of Tashua Knolls Golf Course in Trumbull had very different ideas. In fact, nobody standing on the first tee seemed to be concerned with the weather. 

“This place just has a pulse,” said PGA Director of Golf Bobby Brown as he sat in a golf cart and looked around. Of course Brown, now in his 17th year at Tashua Knolls GC, was correct. Despite the lateness of the season, the course was buzzing with activity. 

The pro shop staff was checking in golfers and preparing carts for excited players like it was early August, the grounds crew was working hard to blow those pesky late fall leaves off the course, players awaiting their tee times were populating the driving range, and the putting green. The pulse and vibrant energy of the 2021 Distinguished Club Award recipient was on full display.  

“It is a great honor,” said Brown of the award. “It means a tremendous amount. The honor itself considering who else is out there in Connecticut is a great tribute to Tashua Knolls, our CSGA volunteers and players, all the growth of the game initiatives that we provide. It is just a great honor.”

Built by Al Zikorus and opened in 1976, the par-72 gem is situated on land once populated by the Tamtashua tribe and later the Mallet family. Framed in many spots by stone walls built by early settlers to the region the course meanders up and down rolling hills offering players impressive views throughout their round. 

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“It is on a tremendous piece of property that offers so many different looks and shots,” said Brown. “Because of the variety players don’t get bored playing the course. It is always a challenge. It’s not long by today’s standard playing at 6,500 yards but our greens are typically fast and firm and with the rough up it does present some challenges.”

What makes Tashua Knolls tick is the welcoming atmosphere. Everyone is welcome from the zero handicapper to the beginner, to families with juniors just picking up the sport. The list of playing opportunities feels endless. There is a Men’s Club, a Senior Men’s Club, a Women’s 18 Hole and Nine Hole Club all with their own board and bylaws. In addition, each year roughly 600 junior players participate in any number of programs offered at the club including Saturday mornings Tashua Glen Junior League held on the club’s par-33 executive course Tashua Glen. 

“Before Bobby got here we had zero junior opportunities,” said Owen Evans a charter member of the Tashua Knolls Men’s Club and long-time CSGA volunteer. “Since Bobby came here the goal has been to grow junior golf and we have.”

Beyond Tashua Knolls day-to-day offerings there is a strong desire to give back to the Connecticut golf community at large. The club regularly hosts CSGA events including the 2017 Connecticut Amateur when it became the first public course to welcome the championship while also hosting SNEWGA events, LPGA Amateur Golf Association events, four high school golf teams, and multiple CIAC Golf high school championships.

As early morning turns into late morning one thing becomes clear nobody at Tashua Knolls GC is ever satisfied. There is love for what they have but a strong desire to make it bigger and better in the years to come. 

“Everybody involved with Tashua is always trying to make it better,” a smiling Brown said with a look of determination in his eyes as he thought about what the future could bring for the course the embraces everyone with open arms. 

About the Connecticut State Golf Association

The Connecticut State Golf Association functions as an extension of the USGA and provides stewardship for amateur golf in Connecticut. Founded in 1899, it is the country’s oldest state golf association and conducts over 60 Championships, Qualifiers, and One Day Tournaments throughout the year.