By all observations, it was another successful Charlie’s Maine Open this past Monday and Tuesday at the Augusta Country Club.

And “open” it was. All you had to do was look at the final leaderboard, which contained very few Maine names. Or you could scan the 150-player field and their residences to see that they came from 18 states, plus Bermuda. Only eight Maine pros entered.

“A lot of these guys know each other,” said a veteran observer. “The Maine players go to other states for their opens, but you have groups from states south of here that come to Maine for the Charlie’s Open, and they continue on to New Hampshire and other New England state opens.”

Several players left from the Augusta Country Club immediately after completing their rounds July 26, because they had to be in New Hampshire for its open the next day. Plus, last weekend they had competed in the Bangor Open.

“That’s what they do during the summer months,” the observer said. “They travel in groups to all of the New England opens and to some in other states. They may be in a motel a night or two with four or five guys in a room.”

If this sounds like Spartan living, it might not be that bad. It is economical, which is necessary because there is not a lot of prize money to be made by players. Only the top five or 10 do well.


Here is the rundown on the 2016 Charlies prize money:

Ted Brown of Glen Allen, Va., earned $9,000 for winning. Jon McClean of West Palm Beach, Florida, and Nicholas Pandelena of New Hampshire each made $5,500 for their second-place tie. Evan Harneliag of Andover, Massachusetts, Spencer Mellon of Oakmont, Pennsylvania (wonder where he plays?), and Colin Brennan of Methuen, Massachusetts, tied for fourth and took home $1,8783 apiece. Christopher DeForest of Cottekill, New York, and Joshua Eure of Grafton Maryland, collected $1,188 each in a seventh-place tie.

Also seventh was Jack Wyman of South Freeport, who had the best score among Maine residents. He earned $750 in pro shop credit, but more importantly qualified for a spot on the Maine team in the Tri-State competition.

From a Maine standpoint, “He was the story of the tournament,” said Maine State Golf Association Executive Director Nancy Storey. “That’s fabulous.”

Other Mainers to “cash,” were Shawn Warren, who tied at 15th and picked up $400 for compiling the best Maine pro score. Jeff Seavey was second in that category, earning $250. Ryan Gay of Augusta finished 22nd and made $45.

Entry fees were as follows: $360 for an out-of-state pro, $210 for a Maine Chapter PGA pro and $160 for an amateur.


Would this be a better event with three rounds? Just about everyone thinks so, but the demand on club pros, in terms of playing three days, makes it difficult for them. So two rounds will continue to be the format, as a way of allowing them to be participants.


What a difference a year makes.

Jesse Speirs, the first Maine golfer to earn a position on the Tour, fired a 69-70-74-73—286 to finish tied for 62nd July 21-24 in the Utah Championship at the Golf Club at Thanksgiving Point in Lehi, Utah. He remains at No. 148 on that tour, having earned $16,57.50 to bring his season prize money to $12,314.

A year ago at this time, Speirs was playing in the Maine Charlie’s Open, during which he tied or 14th place and won $373.



If you are a U.S. armed forces veteran, and you play golf, you might be interested in an upcoming event.

The Western Maine Veterans Administration is conducting its annual golf tournament Aug. 20 at Fairlawn. Information on that scramble is available by telephoning Tom Guilford of Harrison at 207-595-0026.


The Maine State Golf Association is conducting its mixed championship today at Martindale. A Senior Tour event will be Aug. 2 at Lake Kezar, and the regular weekend tournaments will be Aug. 5 and 6 at Gorham.

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