The 2020 Chowder Cup at Cripple Creek Golf & Country Club starts tomorrow (Saturday) morning. I thought a brief review of the original match would be of interest to all.
Lary Larson, “the Commish”, and I created the Chowder Cup in 2002 as one of the “majors” for The Group at Cripple Creek. The other two (2) are the Closed and The Hootie (click here for a short history of The Hootie). We missed The Closed this year because of COVID-19 and The Hootie will be contested this year the weekend prior to the Masters.
The Chowder Cup was envisioned as a Ryder Cup style tournament pitting two (2) teams of Hack golfers against each other. We struggled through alternate shot and better ball matches, followed by Sunday singles matches to determine the winner of the non-existent “cup”. We alternate the Cup, matching the Chowder Cup against the year the Ryder Cup is played and the Peasant’s Cup opposite the President’s Cup. The Ryder Cup was scheduled for this year, but ultimately postponed. We’ll have to see what we do next year.
The original Chowder Cup in 2002 featured 28 players. The Corn (Chowder) Team was captained by the infamous Chris Nacrelli and featured appearances by professionals Bob Crowther and Mark Kopp. The Clam (Chowder) Team was captained by your Retired Golf Hack and featured the pros, Sean Fishbeck (may he rest in peace) and Eddie Quick. The full team rosters are shown below, nicknames included.
I was fortunate enough to captain a team with character disorders galore, including the Dog, Doc and Gonzo, so I rightfully was awarded an outright victory based on their awesome play. We were men back in the day and played 18 holes of Better Ball, followed by 18 holes of Alternate Shot on Day 1. Day 2 featured the 18 hole Singles matches. Sadly, 18 years have passed and there are few of us left, both physically and as members of the Creek.
The current version of the Chowder Cup has been watered down to 9 holes of Better Ball, 9 holes of Alternate Shote, and 9 holes of Scramble on Day 1. The full 18 hole Singles matches remain a fixture (thank goodness!). It is interesting to note that the 2020 version of the Chowder Cup include only 4 members of the original match – Mike Cummings, Mike (Bumley) Farrar, Claude (The Frog) Bernier and Jeff (Retired Golf Hack) Baxter.
I’m proud to Captain a team for the 7th or 8th time over the past 18 years. We no longer name the “chowder” we are playing for . . . we use colors. I captain the White Team and my opponent, Tom Fallon, captains the Red Team. Shirt colors are much easier with white and red compared to corn and clam. We completed our team draws last Wednesday and the matches are all set. 32 players this year and I’m proud that both Mike Cummings and Bumly from the original group are on my team. I’m even partnering with Mr. Farrar in the Alternate Shot game on Day 1. The Frog is on the Red Team this year, but I wish him the best regardless.
Looking forward to a fun and competitive weekend, I’ll be updating the blog with results as we play, and I hope you all found this reminiscence of some value.
Keep it in the short grass.