Interview With Michael (T.J.) Stewart - Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa
A Light Hearted Golf Q & A Interview
By Brian Weis
Below is an interview with Michael (T.J.) Stewart, Director of Golf at Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa. Stewart Managed Clubs for over 27 years in fifteen different countries and had the opportunity along the way to meet, teach, and play with some of the World's most influential leaders.
When did you start golfing and who introduced you do the game?
My Grandfather introduced me to the game around 7 years of age. Papa would take us out to a small 9 hole course in Southern Iowa and we would play against the "old" duffers and win enough money to buy a soda at the end of the day. He always made me play the ball "down" and "summer rules", no matter what. It made me into a better player as a result of that.
What is your current home course?
My home course is Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa in Galena, Illinois. We have 63 Holes here, The North, The South, The East, and our crowning achievement "The General".
To date, what is your proudest golf accomplishment?
I was The Camp Director of a Jr. Golf Program in Tennessee called "The Little Course at Aspen Grove". PGA Tour Player Kirk Triplett came and gave an exhibition for the Jr. Campers. I was asked to join Mr. Triplett to play a few holes on the par 3 course. I could barely take the club back because I was so nervous but with all of my Jr. Campers following me I scraped it off the deck and made a hole in one! That was exciting to do that in front of my Jr. Golfers...and Mr. Triplett
What is your biggest golf pet peeve on or off the course?
Players misbehaving with golf carts, driving recklessly. The unfortunate pattern here is that these "so called players" were "Grey Goose induced" if you know what I mean.
What is your favorite golf destination?
Bali, Indonesia. The beautiful scenery, people, and caddies is an experience I suggest you try.
What course is on your bucket list that you have not played yet?
If you woke up tomorrow and could play one course you played before, where would you play?
If you could change one aspect, rule or thing about golf, what would it be and why?
Hitting out of a divot!!! It's a shame you get penalized after you hit a great shot and land in an old divot having to play out of that! Bummer
Dream foursome (living)?
Tiger Woods, Pamela Anderson, Freddy Couples!
Dream foursome (living or dead)?
My Grandfather Gene, Grandma Bernice, brother Kyle, mother Micki. Sorry, this case I need 5-some
18 Rapid Fire, Off The Cuff Questions
1) Hitting Long Drive OR Sinking Long Putt?
Long Drive. I can boom "em....never could putt!
2) Having Round of Life OR Hole in One?
Having round of life. I think it's still out there. I've been fortunate enough to get lucky a few times with the "ace"
3) Golfing at the crack of dawn OR twilight?
Crack of dawn
4) Hit a power fade OR power draw?
Power fade. The power draw is pretty severe therefore I'm usually hitting 3 off the tee.
5) Beverage cart OR halfway house?
6) Bathroom OR bushes?
Definitely bathroom! C'mon, we are Professionals!
7) Hot dog OR wrap?
Hot dog. Remember, we are very close to Chicago and Chicago dogs rock!
8) Around the green, being in sand OR thick rough?
Sand. I spent most of my golf apprenticeship in South Florida and sometimes brought my sand wedge to the beach and became pretty good. (What's wrong with this picture bringing a golf club to the beachJ)
9) Walking OR riding?
Riding. Give me a break, I'm almost 50!
10) Do you carry traditional 3 iron OR hybrid?
3 iron. Still not into the whole hybrid sensation
11) Do you prefer long par 3 OR long par 5?
Definitely, a long par 5
12) Pants OR Shorts?
Pants. My legs look like "OB stakes"
13) Palmer OR Nicklaus?
Palmer. He took the time and wrote a nice letter to a friend of mine when he had a personal tragedy. Class act!
14) Beatles OR Elvis?
15) Play for fun OR play for money?
For Fun. It's a game fellas!
16) Bump and run OR flop shot?
Bump and run! In my old age and nerves, I might stub my toe with that flop shot!
17) Lay up OR gamble?
Gamble..No guts..No glory
18) 18 holes OR 36?
Revised: 12/16/2011 - Article Viewed 24,174 Times - View Golf Course Profile
Written By: Brian Weis
Brian Weis is the Publisher of GolfTrips.com, a network of golf travel and directory sites including GolfWisconsin.com, GolfMichigan.com, ArizonaGolfer.com, GolfAlabama.com, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.
All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched GolfWisconsin.com. In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and GolfTrips.com was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like GolfTrips.com, GolfGuide.com and GolfPackages.com. It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.
On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.
Contact Brian Weis:
GolfTrips.com - Publisher and Golf Traveler