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Thank you to the clubs for their donations

The list of golf courses and country clubs that have donated foursomes this year is provided below.  Any of these courses can be bid on in advance by our friends that will not make this year’s tournament.  Most of the foursomes can be played most times except weekend mornings and on the typical times reserved for members.  If you would like to bid, send bid request to info@jimtannercaddyclassic.com

Country Clubs donating a foursome include:

  1. Pawtucket CC
  2. Wannamoisett CC
  3. Alpine CC
  4. Ledgemont CC
  5. Shelter Harbor CC
  6. Quidnessset CC
  7. Wanumetomeny G & CC
  8. Crestwood CC
  9. Montaup CC
  10. Carnegie Abbey CC with your choice of hosts Steve Napoli or Peter O’Neill
  11. Kirkbrae CC
  12. Agawam CC
  13. Warwick CC
  14. Potowomut CC
  15. Rhode Island CC
  16. MGA Links
  17. Laurel Lane CC
  18. Pt. Judith CC
  19. Metacomet CC
  20. West Warwick CC
  21. Lincoln CC
  22. Valley CC
  23. New England CC
  24. West Warwick CC
  25. Crystal Lake CC


Recollections of a former caddy

Pawtucket Times – Saturday June 11, 2011 RECOLLECTIONS OF AN OLD CADDY by Paul Treanor

The spring of 1955 I was eleven years old and decided to try caddying.  Pawtucket Country Club’s caddy master at the time was Jim Flynn and Jim Tanner was his assistant.  They taught us how to caddy on two successive late afternoons.  Besides where to stand, how to replace divots and rake traps we were taught to be attentive to who’s turn it was, where all four balls were located, and to be quiet and still when players were hitting.  After two sessions I was ready.

My first loop was for a guy named Bill Catlow.  He was playing in a nine hole “Twilight League” match.  The thing I remember most was the fact that I was, after five and a half sheltered years at St Leo’s School, suddenly thrust right in the middle of adult situations.  Formerly taboo topics such as gambling, booze, women, fancy cars and late night escapades were casually discussed as if we caddies weren’t even there.  I loved it.  That first nine holes I was paid a total of $2.30 which included a fifty cent tip.  On top of that both Jim Tanner and Bill Catlow told me I had done a “good job”.  I thought I had died and gone to heaven.

After caddying for a year and a half I was ready.  Ready for the ultimate promotion.  “Doubles”.  Carrying two bags.  As I recall it was a rainy afternoon and “Twilight League” had been cancelled.  Most of the caddies had gone home.  Jim Tanner looked down and asked “where are all the caddies”.  I was the only caddy for four players who were going out to play a late afternoon nine holes.  I ended up carrying two bags for the foursome sharing clubs and with all four putters.  Some how we finished and, after never making more than $2.50 for nine, I was paid $8.00.  Looking back this was the largest percentage increase in pay of my life.  All because of persistence and a little luck.

Soon after graduating to “doubles” the money was rolling in.  After a while money became not as important as caddying for the real good golfers.  Two types of caddies emerged.  Those who did not play the game were mostly interested in how much they could make.   They would keep an eye out for the biggest tippers and would angle ways to be available for them.  I was the other type who loved caddying for the best golfers where I learned all about the game of golf and how to play it.  I remember paying another caddy a dollar to switch our assigned bags so I could caddy for Les the pro and Ray Hand who was another good golfer of that era.

The highlight of my caddy career came in 1960 when I caddied for Selbie Greenalgh and Eddie Routhier in the fall member-guest four ball and they won.  Even though they got all the glory, prizes and trophy for that long ago victory I know that I was an integral part of the championship team too.   Besides experiencing the thrill of victory they paid me fifty five dollars for three and a half days work which at the time was a lot.  I ran all the way home.

My sophomore year at Saint Rays I made the golf team and for Christmas my mother took me to a shoe store in the basement of a neighbors house where they sold “seconds” to buy me a pair of golf shoes.  I can still vividly see my new black wing tips with leopard skin sides.  Our matches were at Pawtucket CC and while on the putting green my hero Les Kennedy complimented me and my shoes.  I was thrilled.  He asked where I had gotten them and I told him.  I found out later that Les had a deal with many of the sporting goods stores in Pawtucket.  He would not sell golf shoes in the PCC pro shop and they in turn would give him a percentage of all golf shoes they sold.  Les went to the neighbor’s house and tried (unsuccessfully) to get a commission on my discounted leopard skin beauties.

My family had a summer home in Little Compton so from the last day of school until Labor Day we were there.  I caddied and worked in the pro shop at Sakonnet Golf Club every summer for more than ten years.  In fact my whole lifelong career was set in motion and given a jump start by a kindly gentleman I used to caddy for there.  He had always taken an interest in how I was doing at school and told me to take as many job interviews as I could but to see him in my senior year of college before I made my ultimate first job choice.  I thought at the time it was just talk but my father encouraged me that he wouldn’t have said it if he didn’t mean it and for me to follow through.  Mr. Flemming was the President and Chairman of the Board for Grinnell Co.  I was hired on the spot for more than any others had offered and was allowed to create my own hours for the remaining few months of my college career.  I worked for them for the next twenty years rising to the rank of Vice President and Director of Marketing.

I owe a lot to the game of golf and especially my caddy experiences.  The wonderful emersion into adulthood, the exposure to high class men and women golfers and their culture formed crucial building blocks for life.

The fourth annual Jim Tanner Caddy Classic golf tournament is scheduled for this July fifth at beautiful and historic Pawtucket Country Club.  It is a time for all Pawtucket “Boys” from the past sixty or so years to gather and pay tribute to JT and the caddy profession we share.  Proceeds go to the Burke Fund where an endowed scholarship has been established in Jim’s name.  For more info or to make reservations call 401-597-5099 or info@jimtannercaddyclassic.com


Tanner Classic set for July 5, 2011


Pawtucket Times – Saturday June 11, 2011 by Rod MacKenzie

This year marks the fifth anniversary of the Jim Tanner Caddy Classic.  www.jimtannercaddyclassic.com

The tournament has raised over $20,000 for the Jim Tanner Scholarship which is administered by the Burke Fund www.burkefund.org Each year a number of ex-caddies of Pawtucket Country club resurface and join in the celebration of many years caddying and playing the old links along the Ten Mile River.  New stories emerge and many old yarns retold about the joy of spending the summers working and playing at PCC.

This year Richard Plociak, now living in Cleveland and a member of Canterbury Country Club, will return to play the course that Richard played as a young man.  Richard grew up in Pawtucket as the next door neighbor to Jim Tanner.  Both Richard and JT were good friends and groomed their golf games when they were not working at the course.  What both men most talk about missing from those days was the camaraderie of young men spending the long summer days looping, playing and the hijinks that teenagers share.

Jim Tanner has worked and played at Pawtucket Country Club for over 60 years.  Jim was elected to the Pawtucket Country Club Hall of Fame in 2002.  The other inductees of the PCC Hall of Fame are Les Kennedy and Norman Lutz.  JT received an Honorary Membership at PCC and continues to play the game with great skill.  JT shot even par 69 last year beating his age by a few shots.  Jim was inducted into the Professional Caddie Association Hall of Fame in 2009 at the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando.  Jim shares this honor with 100 members of the PCA Hall of Fame including Gene Sarazen, Bruce Edwards and Fluff Cowen.

The Classic started in 2007 and was played in late November with just 24 players.  The tournament was postponed twice because of severe weather conditions.  When we finally played, it was evident that we had started something special.  We started playing around 2:00 and most of the 24 participants were still reminiscing about their teenage years late on a Sunday evening in the grill room at Pawtucket Country Club.  In the summer of 1973, my friends and I had many putting matches under the lights at this very spot.  The putting green eventually was replaced with the grill room and the green was moved to the lower level where the caddy shack once existed.

Last year, the tournament was played on the hottest day of the year.  Temperatures reached 103 degrees.  Most all of the 168 golfers completed their rounds and the day was a great success!

Back in the 70s, Pawtucket Country Club had many of the best players in Rhode Island.  I often caddied for Les Kennedy, Norm Lutz, Lenny Jenard, and Jack McDermott.  I caddied for Les one afternoon when he shot 62.  My good friend, Malcolm Najarian, caddied for Les when he shot 61.  That is 8 under par and stands today as the course record. In 1975, I caddied for Norm Lutz when he won the RI Open beating Dana Quigley in an extra hole playoff at the Alpine Country Club.  On returning to the club, Norm and I were greeted in the clubhouse by a standing ovation.    What a feeling of exuberance that I shared with all at Pawtucket Country Club members that afternoon.

Norm Lutz had the best short game of any player that I have ever known.   Norm reached the finals of the State Amateur four times, winning once in 1970. He won the Rhode Island Open in 1975 and the Senior Amateur in 1990 and 1992. He was the Par Three champion seven times. In addition to playing in numerous regional and national events, Norm also qualified for the U.S. Amateur three times and the U.S. Senior Amateur four times.  Norm won 19 PCC Club Championships!

Les Kennedy won several New England Championships including several state Open Championships.  Les was the first round leader of the US Open in 1949 when it was at Medinah.  Les finished 19th in that Open.  Les also was rookie of the year on the PGA Tour in 1942.

In 1973, I caddied for Joanne Gunderson Carner at Pawtucket.  The foursome was Les, Norman, Lenny Jenard and Joanne.  Joanne was a legend and was very long off the tee.  She hit a driver and a 5 wood to the middle of the 8th green which is a par 5 and 540 yards.  WOW!  I bet that Joanne was the only woman in the world that could hit the ball that far back then.  Joanne Carner is now a member of the LPGA Hall of Fame.

One of the best things about golf is the time you share with friends.  This year we hope to have Brad Adamonis back at Pawtucket Country Club to share in the celebration and to share some of the highlights of his pro career.  Brad had a very successful rookie year on the PGA Tour in 2008 winning more than $860,000.  Brad is a former club champion at Pawtucket CC and was a regular playing  partner of Chris O’Neill while at Pawtucket.

As the popularity of “The Jim Tanner Caddy Classic” has grown over the last five years, we thank the many sponsors that make it possible to raise the money for the Jim Tanner Scholarship.  Pawtucket Country Club has benefited from over 100 former caddies and club workers receiving the Burke Scholarship.  Last year, three scholarships were awarded to workers at Pawtucket Country Club including Terry O’Neill, Julia Spencer and Michael Capineiri.  The scholarships are typically for each year toward a four year undergraduate degree.

Former Burke Scholars playing this year include: Joe Keough, John O’Connor, Mark Melikian, Paul Treanor, Tim O’Neill, Chris O’Neill, Jack Nixon, Steve Napoli, Mark Najarian, George Haddad, Rodney MacKenzie and Terry O’Neill.

Many thanks also to my fellow Jim Tanner Caddy Classic committee members including Kevin Fortin, John Markley, and Chris O’Neill.  They were all “Super Loopers” back in the Day.  Any one that caddied Pawtucket Country Club from the 1960s through the early 1990s remember fondly JT’s sayings…..”Down in Back Boys or He’s soft as a grape.”  Thanks for the memories JT!