Michigan Firms on the Go and Show
by Art McCafferty
Drivers start your backswing!! The beginning of April for golfers also signals the ending of the myriad of golf shows that are available to them from November to March.
The biggest and best, the PGA Merchandize Show held in the 1.1 million square feet of Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, annually attracts over 50,000 buyers, 1500 exhibitors from 73 countries and a ton of media for its event.
Many of the Michigan firms that are involved with the golf market nationally, were there with the hope of selling their wares. The following represent the majority of those that attended and what they were presenting at their booths.
Accessories & Specialties of Crystal featured their new golf cart cigar holder. CEO James Estil www.acnsp.com
Adventure Golf Services of Traverse City highlighted their turn-key construction, renovation and operation of miniature golf courses and family entertainment centers. CEO Arne Lundmark 616-922-6166.
Affinity Golf of Flushing showed their clubs, putters, storage racks, carts and headwear. CEO Bill Baird 888-502-4653.
Avon Golf Grips of Cadillac was promoting their new Dr. Michael Dunn/Avon Q-School, that will be held at Grand Traverse Resort later this summer. Joy Van Drie Marketing www.avongolf.com
Ball O' Mattic of Niles was showcasing their range equipment. CEO Lee Hope 800-327-4718.
Bohning Company, Ltd. of Lake City, a company that specializes in ferrules for golf clubs, launched their new Charity Ball. The Charity Ball is a convenient way to carry that extra sleeve of golf balls. Sales Representative Dale Voice 800-253-0136.
Boyne USA Resorts of Boyne Falls, was one of the few resorts that had a booth at the show. COO Art Tebo www.boyne.com
Clark and Gregory of Grand Rapids were displaying their fine variety of men's and women's wear. Gary Ramsden 800-221-9665.
Denali Products, Inc. of Jenison was getting some traffic with their Clubtub, a somewhat portable golf club cleaner. CEO Chris Williams www.golfx.com
Ever-Green Golf Bags manufactured by VMI Inc. of Northport, assembles 15 styles of golf bags from junior to professional. They manufacture their product for many companies, but sell it under their own brand as Evergreen. Denie Lumetta 800-775-285-7846.
E-Z Grip is a new product coming from a group of eight Marquette investors. Their golf grip is unique in that once it is put on, air shrinks it to provide a secure and insulating connection to the club. CEO Bill Bruce www.griptec.com
FMP International of Grand Haven was showing off their virtual turf for those who were in the driving range mat business. The virtual mat is made of a space age material that has a true dynamic surface. Basically, it is the best artificial hitting surface you can find. CEO Michael Beaver www.FMPInt.com
Ferris State University was once again letting people in the industry know that their golf management program is the best in America. President William Cedarberg www.fsu.edu
Golf Butler is located in Allegan and the Account Executive is Mark Remington. The Golf Butler is something Felix Unger would just love. It is a well organized sturdy container that stores your shoes, balls, tees, sunglasses, pencils, you name it. Toll free 877.686.9144
JMK Sports of Grand Rapids was celebrating their 10th year of supplying custom and standard tournament scoresheets for the golf industry. VP Marketing Joel Jetzer 800-637-0166.
J.T.D. Enterprises of Troy brought out their new four ball retrievers. The product which compliments their one and two ball retrievers is being pushed heavily in the South, where people have a little more time to search for golf balls. Tom and Deni Nihra Sales www.jtdent.com
Handicomp of Jenison was demonstrating the computer system and software. CEO Stewart Healy. www.handi.com
International Interiors Golf Art of Mt. Clemens was showing off their great golf themed photographs for clubhouse and office. CEO William Manning 810-468-8613.
Interactive Frontiers was featuring their teaching and training aids. CEO Christopher Hart www.ifroniers.com
JP Lann Golf of Royal Oak had a ton of their many accessories on display. President Paul Nefouse 800-332-7377.
Knight Golf of Flushing was showing off their vast array of bags, carryalls and luggage, carts, clubs and putters. Knight Golf had one of the nicer display booths from Michigan. CEO Bill Baird 800-728-2471.
Links World Wide- This is a newly forming company that wants to enlist golf sales enthusists to begin to build their own business. Essentially, the company will set you up with a kit that will let you sell and buy discounted golf merchandise to both your customers and yourself. For further information, call Ron Stachnik 616-947-9684.
Longshot Golf of Shelby Township was featuring over 25 different golf products, from impact retail kits to reverse taper grips. CEO Jim Krause www.longshotgolf.com
Masteroll of Maple City was still selling many of their very original putters. 800-526-4728.
MD Sports Jewelry of Clarkston, was displaying all of their fine 14K sports jewelry. CEO Walter Cole Jr. www.mdjsportsjewelry.com
Oldsmobile Scramble located in Coldwater, was once again reminding people that they have one of the largest golf tournaments in the world. With their new lineup of Intrigue, Aurora and Cutlass, Oldsmobile is fast becoming Newmobile. Director Richard Gam www.oldsmobile.com
Progressive Concepts located in Walled Lake is a new company founded in 1997. They are the manufacturer of high quality golf accessories. They include Rangepak, an inexpensive golf club carrier, Ballpak an inexpensive golf ball carrier and E-Z Reach, a device that allows a golfer to tee up the ball without bending over. 888-436-8711.
Technique Golf Company of Warren is a new company formed by Dean Dingman and his brother. Dean left Pole-Kat, who ventured south this past year. They feature clubs with modern technology with modest prices. They are marketed under the brands of Vortex, Helix and Prowler. Dean Dingman 810-758-7807.
The news at the Chicago Golf Show, besides the great job that Don Wyckoff did with getting all of the Michigan people together, was the arrival of new state tourism director, Susy Avery. She comes to Travel Michigan from the Governor's Southeastern Michigan office. She is looking eagerly forward to the job she has in front of her. While there, she was especially excited about the new Northwest Airlines deal which will effectively reduce the cost of air travel, just $69 from anywhere to anywhere in Michigan. She felt this would aid golf, as it would make going up north more attractive.
Michigan had 32 exhibitors at the Chicago show.
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