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Changes Afoot at Dad Miller

September 09, 1996|STEVE KRESAL

Dad Miller golf course in Anaheim is rarely the kind of place that has a buzz about it.

Golfers, by the hundreds, gather daily to take on the mostly flat and straight-forward layout that is as popular for its quick rounds and normally good condition as it is for its price--$17 to walk on weekdays.

But the last few weeks, a lot has been happening at this normally tranquil tract. First, there is the recent completion of the first half of a major alteration to two holes on the front nine.

The eighth hole used to be one of the easiest par fives in Orange County. It measured only 445 yards, and the old joke was that it was a par five and not a par four because the city councilmen couldn't reach it in two.

But the hole was lengthened to 515 yards from the back of the two tee boxes and now is reachable in two shots only for the longest of hitters.

"Now you have to most likely make a good putt to make a birdie," said Roger Teal, head professional. "The hole looks exactly like a Coke bottle from the bottom up."

In order to make room for the new tee boxes, the green for the par-three No. 7 was moved forward. The hole used to play from 200 and 215 yards long.

A new green was constructed this summer and the hole's maximum length will be 185 yards.

The green, which is 6,200 square feet and slopes from back to front, has grown in but won't open until mid-October, allowing it time to mature. There are two sand traps on the right side and a large grass swale protecting the left side.

Teal said there could be as many as a three-club difference when the cup is in the front, middle or back.


Let's play 100: Being the head professional, Teal is very familiar with nearly every inch of Dad Miller, but he recently got a chance to increase his knowledge of the layout.

He and Doug Stodgel, president of the course's golf association, took part in a charity golf marathon.

They played 100 holes in one day to raise money for junior golf. The pair stepped to the first tee in the bleak dawn light at 5:45 a.m. and played five rounds and 10 holes, blasting away until about 3 p.m.

Everyone playing that day was made aware of the pair, and Teal and Stodgel were allowed to play through groups whenever necessary. They ate on the fly rather than stopping for breakfast or lunch. They averaged a little more than five minutes a hole.

"I got tired during the second round," Teal said, "but then I got my second wind and kind of perked up."

Teal's best round was a one-under 70 and Stodgel's best was 71. They took pledges and raised $1,075.


In case you didn't know: The Southern California Golf Assn. recently released a sheet with some interesting facts about area golfers.

It's estimated that more than 1.5 million Southern Californians play golf, 750,000 of which are called core golfers, meaning they play at least eight rounds a year.

Southern California golf courses employ about 21,000 people and pay an estimated $379 million in wages.

The SCGA also recently put up an Internet site ( that has proven to be a great success, according to Bob Thomas, the organization's director of communications.

"We think it's doing fine," he said. "We are getting a lot of positive feedback."

One of the most popular features is the handicap page, on which players enter their SCGA number and get their handicap index for the most recent month. During the recent U.S. Amateur near Portland, Ore., the page carried hole-by-hole results for the 45 Southern Californians in the first two rounds of the tournament.

The SCGA is considering adding several features to the service in the coming months, including forms to enter tournaments.


Chris Tidland, the former Valencia High and Oklahoma State standout, closed with a one-over par 72 Sunday in the final round of the Nike Tour's $200,000 Colorado Classic, played on the Riverdale Golf Club's Dunes Course in Brighton.

He finished with a four-round total of 278, 10 shots behind winner Stewart Cink, a former Georgia Tech player from Atlanta. Tidland received $1,603 to increase his earnings to $20,211. Tidland has played in 22 Nike tour events this year, making the cut nine times.

His best finish was at the Louisiana Open, held the last week of March. Tidland was 14-under for four rounds, tied for ninth, and won $6,250.

The Orange County Golf Notebook will run monthly during the school year. Readers are encouraged to suggest items. Call (714) 966-5904, fax (714) 966-5663 or e-mail


County Drives

Here is a look at the features that make one golf hole in Orange County stand out:

Course: Dad Miller Golf Course, 430 N. Gilbert St., Anaheim (714) 748-8900

Hole: No. 8

Length: 500 and 515 yards

Description: This par five, with a slight dogleg to the right, used to have most players thinking about making a birdie. But recently it has been lengthened by 70 yards and now par is a good score. A fence on the left and several mature trees on the right border the fairway.

Hint: Driver isn't necessarily the best club off the tee. The fairway narrows about 230 yards down the fairway then opens up again another 60 yards out. Aim a second shot toward the left side of the fairway to set up an approach shot that comes in between traps protecting the green.

"Now it's a good three-shot hole. People are saying 'Hey, you finally got a real par five on the front side.' "

--Roger Teal, Head Professional

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