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Aug 20, 2013 | 06:44 AM

Our Cups Runneth Overseas

With Team Europe’s convincing victory in the Solheim Cup, the trophies for all four of the game’s major team competitions remain on the other side of the pond—as they have been for the past two years. In 2012, the amateur teams from GB&I won the Walker Cup at Royal Aberdeen and the Curtis Cup at Nairn, and last September Team USA’s "Meltdown at Medinah" enabled the Euros to retain the Ryder Cup they’d won two years earlier at Celtic Manor. As if all that weren’t enough, Matt Fitzpatrick’s victory at Brookline on Sunday means that the U.S. Amateur and Open trophies of the same calendar year both rest in the hands of Englishmen for the first time ever. Has the sun set on the American empire?

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Aug 19, 2013 | 06:40 AM

Sweet Success

Cantigny—the well-regarded, 27-hole public-golf complex outside Chicago—is already a leader in environmental stewardship and a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary. To that list of green accomplishments, add apiary. Scott Witte, the club’s superintendent, is an accomplished beekeeper, maintaining 10 hives on the property. The honeybees help pollinate flowers on the courses’ 300 acres and the honey they produce is sold in the golf shop, as are candles and lip balm made from the beeswax. But there’s more. According to the local Daily Herald, Witte took $200 of the “honey money” earned from product sales and, through the Educational Development Projects Trust, sent it to a high school in Ghana to help the students in the Awutu-Winton Bee Club buy three bee suits and two smokers. Now that’s a perfect story for “The Buzz."

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Aug 16, 2013 | 06:30 AM

And Who Said Scots Were Cheap?

If you’re heading to Scotland in the next few months—our congratulations if you are—consider a visit to the Mull of Kintyre off the west coast (across the Firth of Clyde from Turnberry) and rounds at two classic courses, the nearly 140-year-old Machrihanish Golf Club, designed by Old Tom Morris, and the four-year-old Machrihanish Dunes, designed by David McLay Kidd. Besides two great golf experiences, the round at Mach Dunes could win you $1 million. Between now and October 15, golfers who sign in at the pro shop and play a full 18 will be automatically registered for random drawings that will pick four finalists for a hole-in-one shootout. Each of the four will then get one shot on the beautiful, 167-yard 14th hole (shown above). There’s a little more to it than that, of course, and all the details are on the club’s website. But honestly, even if you don’t win the money, the chance to play these two courses is, to coin a phrase, priceless. Good luck.

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Aug 15, 2013 | 08:24 AM

Ryder Cup Homecoming

On the heels of “The Gathering”—Tourism Ireland’s campaign inviting North Americans of Irish descent to visit Eire this year—Scotland is promoting heritage tourism with its “Homecoming 2014” outreach. “There are three types of people we want to come to Homecoming 2014,” said Alex Salmond, first minister of Scotland. “First, all people of Scottish ancestry. Second, anyone whose granny once met a Scot. And third, everyone else.” Heading the list of next year’s events is the much-anticipated Ryder Cup at Gleneagles. Officials have confirmed that final-stage applications for tickets are up 38 percent compared to the 2010 event at Celtic Manor in Wales. In addition, people from 75 different countries will head to the fabled resort in the foothills of the Scottish Highlands for the competition in September, 2014. The biennial match-play competition between teams from Europe and the U.S. is expected to provide a major economic boost to Scotland, which has also scheduled next year a referendum on independence from the U.K. You can expect that particular contest to be as hotly contested as the Ryder Cup matches!

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