Fearrington Golf Club

Fearrington Golf Club

Bylaws Adopted September 4, 2019


ARTICLE 1 – NAME: The name of this organization is the Fearrington Golf Club (FGC).

ARTICLE 2 – MISSION: The purpose of the FGC is to bring together Fearrington Village and Galloway Ridge residents having a common interest in the sport of golf. The FGC will offer multiple leagues to accommodate different skill levels and allow each grouping to establish its own rules of play.

ARTICLE 3 – MEMBERSHIP: Membership in the FGC is open to all residents of Fearrington Village and Galloway Ridge. Membership is also available to all persons outside of the Fearrington Community who are sponsored and invited to join the club by a current FGC member.


  1. The FGC will hold quarterly meetings. At its December meeting, attending members will elect officers to serve as a Board of Directors (BOD) for the next calendar year. BOD electees will serve a one-year term but may be reelected for additional terms.
  2. The BOD will oversee the property, business, and public affairs of the FGC and consist of a president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, membership director, and tournament director(s).
  3. General meetings of the FGC may be convened if 10% of the active membership is present, but a quorum of 20% is needed to elect new officers and amend the Bylaws.
  4. Duties and Functions of Officers:
    1. President: Presides at all FGC Board and membership meetings, and prepares these agendas. He supervises the affairs of the FGC and its leagues and appoints chairs of special committees. The President shares check writing power with the Treasurer.
    2. Vice President: Fulfills the duties of President in the event of his absence. He leads the Nominating Committee that presents a new slate of officers at the December meeting.
    3. Secretary: Takes minutes of FGC/BOD meetings. The Secretary preserves the documentary history of the FGC, minutes, newsletters, and rosters other than financial records, and make them available to any member. The Secretary issues ballots and tabulates the vote results at FGC meetings.
    4. Treasurer: Accepts, records, and deposits in the FGC checking account all monies collected from the membership and disburses FGC funds for club activities. Shares check writing authority with the President. He prepares and delivers a quarterly financial report for membership review and preserves the FGC financial records.
    5. Membership Director: Chairs the Membership Committee and fosters club growth by communicating with all those interested in participation.
    6. Tournament Director(s): Chairs a Tournament Committee which schedules and arranges several tournaments throughout the year. The Tournament Director will determine the format and rules for all FGC tournaments.
    7. The BOD may select a FGC member to fill a Board vacancy and present him to the next general meeting.

ARTICLE 5 - DUES AND FEES: An annual membership fee will be assessed on all active members, and new member will pay an additional initiation fee. All fees and dues are non-refundable. The BOD may impose fee increases of up to 20%; increases beyond 20% must be announced at the October meeting and approved by the membership in December.

ARTICLE 6 – COMMITTEES: The President may name special committees to aid the Board in the conduct of business and appoint a BOD member as chairman of such. Any member of the FGC may serve on such committees.


  1. The FGC membership (either individually or collectively) shall not be liable for damages or other costs resulting from property damage or personal injury, illness, or death relating to the actions of an individual FGC member or guest or other party while engaged in FGC activities such as, but not limited to, participation in weekly golf play or an FGC golf tournament. FGC officers, Board members, and committee members are released from any liability for authorized conduct taken in good faith. Furthermore, participation in the car pool facilitated by the club to any event is voluntary and for the convenience of the players. Anyone so desiring may arrange his own transport.
  2. The only exception to the above disclaimer of liability relates to a situation in which an FGC officer (acting in an authorized capacity) signs an agreement which commits the FGC to a payment for goods or services received or to be received by the FGC. In such a case, it is understood that the officer is merely representing the FGC and that a contingent collective liability for all members of the FGC is undertaken.
  3. By accepting membership, FGC members acknowledge and agree that the FGC is an informal unincorporated recreational group, and accordingly that each member assumes personal responsibility for his actions during all FGC play days and other events.

ARTICLE 8 – BYLAW AMENDMENTS: Proposed amendments to the Bylaws must be presented to a general meeting of the FGC for consideration. If a majority approves it, the BOD will either schedule a second meeting or use e-mail to inform the full membership. At the next quarterly FGC meeting, a vote on the amendment will be taken and, if approved, the amended Bylaw will be posted on the website within 30 days. An absentee ballot may be submitted to the Secretary prior to the scheduled meeting when the vote will be taken.

ARTICLE 9 – DISSOLUTION: A petition to dissolve the FGC must be signed by two-thirds of active members and presented to the BOD. Upon receipt, the Board will pay all FGC debts and direct an equal distribution of all remaining assets to the members.

fgccowcolor150wBeginning Thursday, May 21, 2015 the Fearrington Golf Club will provide an opportunity for its members and other residents of Fearrington Village and Galloway Ridge as its guests to enjoy playing 9-holes of golf.

The club is responding to its members' wish for more variety for their golf game. Those members who do not wish to play 18-holes in very hot weather, those whose stamina preclude enjoyment of a full round, those who do not wish to spend 5-8 hours golfing, now have the option of informally playing 9-holes.

This option allows members to maintain their league play and to enjoy a 9-hole outing with their friends. Residents of Fearrington Village and Galloway Ridge who wish to play 9 holes of golf are invited to play as the club's guests and after experiencing the enjoyment, will be invited to join the club.

Initially, this group will feature a weekly start on  Thursdays at 8 AM at the Twin Lakes Golf Course, 848 Willow Way, Chapel Hill, NC. FGC members should sign up for 9-hole play on the Golf Club's Webpage. If you are not a FGC member, either have a friend who is a member sign you up as their guest or simply show up at Twin Lakes on Thursday at 8:00 AM.

For more completed details, see the Golf Club's Webpage on the Fearrington Homeowner's Website.


You must be logged in to use this page.

Login to the FHA Website and try again. If you do not have a login on the FHA website, and are a Fearrington resident or alum, you need to get one. See the Website FAQs link under Info on the blue menu bar above.

If you are not a Fearrington resident or alum, you can not get a login to our site. In this case, see the FGC Administrator.

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The Fearrington Golf Club (FGC) was founded in 1990 and today boasts a membership of over 50 members. Membership in the FGC is open to men and women of all abilities who are residents of Fearrington Village, including Galloway Ridge and Henderson Place. Membership is also available to individuals outside of the Fearrington Community who are sponsored and invited to join the club by a current Fearrington Golf Club member. No handicap is too high or low to play with us and have a good time.

We offer two leagues (A and AAA) within the club. The A league plays year round on Tuesday and Thursday at various courses. Most A league players maintain a handicap index of 30 or below, utilizing our modified USGA rules. The AAA league plays March through November on Tuesdays at courses close to home. AAA league players generally carry a handicap index above 30

Each member of the FGC will serve as the Manager of the Month (MoM) about once every 3 to 4 years. The MoM is responsible for scheduling courses, organizing teams and drivers, and posting scores on our website. When asked, a member selects a month to serve as MoM. Written instructions and hands-on assistance are provided.

The FGC is associated with the Carolinas Golf Association. Any member of the FGC who maintains a GHIN handicap is eligible to play in tournaments the association sponsors. See the 2020 CGA schedule at https://www.carolinasgolf.org/One-Day-Tournaments. GHIN membership costs an additional $21 per year.  

Annual dues are $30 with a one-time initiation fee of $20. Add $21 per year for those who also want GHIN membership. Applications and payments can be deposited in the club mailbox at the Swim and Croquet mail kiosk. Should you be interested in playing a around of golf with the club or would like to become a member, please contact our President or Membership Chair: President Michael Manning at michaeljmanning@msn.com or Jack Kowal, Membership Chair at moncksc@gmail.com or 919-444-2479 for additional information. 


 Click here to print an FGC Membership Application

CONTENTS   Name & Link
















We attest that the original version of FGC Bylaws was adopted on            JUNE  14, 2000            ________ 


President’s signature and date__(S)__Ray Ivey, 6/14/2000                 

Secretary’s signature and date __(S)__Jewell Cornell,



We attest that an amendment 11 was ratified on March 6,


             President’s signature and date__(S)__Judith

            Secretary’s signature and date__(S)__Stan Silverstein, 3/6/2002



We attest that an amendment   was ratified on____March 6. 2013______             

             President’s signature and date (S) __Ron Wiegerink__________

             Secretary’s signature and date  (S) _Jerry Evans_____________


We attest that the version of FGC Bylaws which follows (except for later amendments, if any) is the same as that version authenticated by last year’s FGC Board.

            President’s signature and date__(S)            Secretary’s signature and date 


The name of this non-profit organization is the Fearrington Golf Club (hereafter referred to as the FGC).


The principal purpose of the FGC shall be to bring together Fearrington residents having a common interest in the sport of golf to explore and advance that interest both as individuals and as a community. Recognizing a variety of levels of skill and interests, the FGC will offer several leagues and other activities to accommodate our golfing community’s needs.


  1. Membership in the FGC is restricted to the residents of Fearrington and Galloway Ridge.
  2. An associate membership is available for former FGC members no longer in residence at Fearrington or Galloway Ridge.  To qualify, the former resident must signify his interest in such membership by submission of the annual dues to the FGC treasurer not later than March 1 of the given year.  If this condition is not met, associate membership is denied for that year.  If not met for two successive years, associate membership is no longer available to the former Member.  Associate members are entitled to the same  privileges as FGC members.
  3. Honorary membership may be conferred upon a former or a current resident of Fearrington or Galloway Ridge by action of the FGC Board.  Honorary members are entitled to the same privileges as FGC members, but pay no dues.


  1. During the month of December, the FGC members will elect six FGC members to the offices listed in part 4 of this Section. The six FGC members elected as officers shall also serve as the FGC Board of Directors (hereafter referred to as the FGC Board or, simply, Board).  See SECTION 7--ELECTIONS.
  2. Responsibilities of the FGC Board  of Directors:
    1. Replacement of an FGC officer unable or unwilling to complete the elected term of office.
    2. Determining the amount of FGC initiation fee and annual dues as provided in SECTION 5
    3. Scheduling and conducting meetings for both the FGC Board and general  membership.  Distributing FGC funds as charitable bequests or honoraria for the performance of services in individual amounts not to exceed $100 or in the aggregate for the fiscal year not to exceed $500.   Payments in amounts exceeding these limits must have the prior approval of the FGC membership.
    4. Providing for the timely distribution of the FGC Bylaws to the FGC membership to all members when the Bylaws are amended and to new members upon the payment of initiation fees and annual dues.
    5. Validating subsequent amendment of the Bylaws, and the continuing authentication of the Bylaws. This will be evidenced by the President and Secretary signing and dating the relevant sections contained on the first page of this document.
    6. Ratifying the petition for dissolution (see SECTION 14)
    7. Initiating, modifying, or terminating any other actions that are consistent with the proper execution of the Board’s implied powers.
  3. The officers of FGC shall be President, Vice-president, Secretary, Treasurer, Membership Director, and Tournament Director.  All officers are board members by election, see part (1) of this Section, or by appointment, see SECTION 9. The specific functions of the FGC officers include the following:
      1. Preparing agenda for FGC Board and membership meetings.
      2. Presiding at scheduled FGC Board and membership meetings.
      3. Monitoring activity and suggesting courses of action for directors, website and internet communications personnel and all committees.
      4. Chairing the Audit, Bylaws and Program committees when they are active.
      5. Planning and managing the Annual Banquet following the Annual Memorial Tournament.
      1. Preparing agenda and presiding at FGC Board and membership meetings in the absence of the President of the FGC.
      2. Chairing the Nominating Committee, Handicap Committee and the Rules-of-Golf Committee when they are active.
      3. Prepare to be elected and serve as President the following year.
      1. Taking minutes at FGC meetings or supervising recording secretary performing that operation.
      2. Storing or controlling storage for a period of four years such documents as FGC: agenda and minutes,  Bylaws, Rules of Golf, newsletters, financial statements, tournament activity, Membership Directory,  Committee Directory, web site information and any other documentation of FGC activity that might be of use for review or confirmation of FGC happenings.
      3. Issuance and control of ballots for the election of officers at the December general meeting.
      1. Controlling the receipt of initiation fees and annual dues.
      2. Controlling the receipt of tournament fees.
      3. Depositing in FGC checking account all funds collected from FGC membership.
      4. Disbursing funds for FGC functions such as tournament fees, prizes, luncheons, merchandising purchases, annual banquet, charitable bequests and honoraria, and other approved costs.
      5. Making provision for automatic transfer of check-writing authority to another FGC officer in the event of the Treasurer’s inability to perform Treasurer’s functions.
      6. Maintaining records suitable for audit.
      7. Preparing financial statements on a timely basis including the annual statements for the December general meeting.
      1. Communicating with those interested in joining FGC and facilitating their recruitment.
      2. Providing new members with these Bylaws, Rules of Golf and other documents as required.
      3. Leading the Membership Committee when it is active.
      1. Forming and chairing the Tournament Committee
      2. Scheduling and managing the Annual Memorial Tournament and other periodic tournaments.


  1. There shall be an initiation fee of $20.00 and an annual dues charge of $30.00,  The fee and the annual dues are not pro rata and are not refundable in whole or in part.
  2. The Board at its discretion may change the amount of the initiation fee and annual dues for the following year, but not by more than 20% annually. To give effect to such changes, the FGC Board must announce the taking of such action not later than the December general meeting of the FGC. Any change in the initiation fee or annual dues of more than 20% must be approved by the membership at a general meeting for which notice of such proposed change has been given.


  1. Committees may be formed as needed to assist the officers in the conduct of their assignments. Committees will be appointed by an officer of the FGC and will be responsive to the direction of that officer.  Committee appointments will terminate each December 31 or at such time that the authorizing officer elects to dissolve the committee.
  2. A committee may consist of one or more members.
  3. FGC members may serve on one or more committees and may be reappointed to serve on succeeding committees.
  4. The committees may be either “standing” or “ad hoc.”


  1. Each year during the month of December  six FGC members will be elected by the FGC members to serve a one year term as officers. The six officers shall constitute the  FGC Board.
  2. The Nominating Committee will identify the nominees who have agreed to serve as officers and as the FGC Board for the annual election, and present them to the membership by publishing on the FGC website and/or by e-mail in November.
  3. The voting will take place at a time and site designated by the FGC Board.  The Secretary shall be in charge of the issuance and control of ballots for the election of officers at the December general meeting.
  4. For the purpose of this election a quorum shall be twenty per cent of the FGC membership.
  5. All voting will be by FGC members in attendance; there will be no voting in absentia or by  proxy.
  6. The newly elected officers constituting the FGC Board will take active control of the FGC immediately following the close of the December meeting at which they are elected.


The FGC fiscal year shall run from December 1 of one year through November 30 of the following year.


If a position on the FGC Board (and concurrently an officer’s position) becomes vacant before the normal expiration of the particular member’s term, the Nominating Committee shall submit to the FGC Board  a list of one or more names of individuals agreeing to fill the vacancy for the unexpired portion of the Board member’s term. The FGC Board shall make an appointment after considering the list of nominees submitted by the Nominating Committees. 


  1. FGC meetings may be general or limited.  General meetings are held for the entire FGC membership; limited meetings are held for the FGC Board and/or committees.
  2. Specific aspects of the general meeting:
    1. There shall be at least four general meetings held each calendar year for the FGC membership.
    2. The President shall be responsible for calling, scheduling, and presiding at the general meetings; if the President is unable or unwilling to perform these assignments, the Vice-president shall assume that collective responsibility.
    3. In the absence of the quorum, ten percent of FGC membership, a general meeting may not be held.
    4. All voting will be by FGC members in attendance.  There will be no voting in absentia or  by proxy.
    5. Except as provided elsewhere for elections (SECTION 7 (3)) and amendments (SECTION 13), the FGC Board will rule on the form of voting (show of hands, voice vote, or secret ballot) for particular courses of proposed action.
    6. A motion having been seconded and voted upon will be deemed to have passed if a majority of the votes cast is in favor of the motion.
    7. One of the general meetings must be held within the first ten days of December at which time the Board will render a report for the year just concluded.  At that meeting, the Treasurer shall report the results of FGC operations for the year and its current financial condition.  The FGC Board shall give a report of its activities for the preceding fiscal year and  assessment of work yet to be done.  At the conclusion of the December meeting, the continuing and newly Elected Board members shall assume control of FGC operations and records.
  3. Specific aspects of limited meetings:
    1. The FGC Board and FGC committees may meet privately as often as they choose.
    2. The designated FGC member for each of these groups may call for and schedule meetings as provided for elsewhere in the Bylaws or as circumstances dictate in the absence of such provisions.
    3. The presider for these meetings shall be designated by the particular group or as provided for elsewhere in the Bylaws.
    4. All voting will be by FGC members in attendance; there will be no voting in absentia or by proxy.
    5. The particular group will rule on the form of voting (show of hands, voice vote, or secret ballot) for particular courses of proposed action.
    6. A motion having been seconded and voted upon will be deemed to have passed if:
      1. The vote being taken during a limited FGC Board meeting, four votes are cast in support of the motion.
      2. The vote being taken during a limited FGC Committee meeting, a majority of the FGC membership of that committee cast their votes in support of the motion.


  1. FGC members are entitled to inspect and review FGC records upon written request made to the Secretary of the FGC.  The Secretary will provide the records requested or direct the person seeking the information to the party in possession of the relevant record.
  2. The Secretary is the custodian of documented records of FGC activities for the most recent four years.
  3. At the beginning of each calendar year the Secretary shall retain possession of relevant FGC records or his/her successor shall take possession of those records.
  4. Records older than four years may be discarded.
  5. As part of its review function, the FGC Board may direct an Audit Committee to review or audit the Treasurer’s records annually or whenever the Treasurer vacates that office or at such other times as the FGC Board deems appropriate.


  1. The FGC membership (either individually or collectively) shall not be liable for damages or other costs resulting from property damage or personal injury, illness, or death relating to the actions of an individual FGC member or guest or other party while engaged in FGC activities such as but not limited to participation in weekly golf play or a FGC golf tournament. FGC officers, Board members, and committee members are released from any liability for authorized conduct taken in good faith
  2.  Participation in the car pool facilitated by the club to any event is voluntary and for the convenience of the players.  Anyone so desiring may arrange their own transportation.
  3. The only exception to the above disclaimer of liability relates to a situation in which an FGC officer (acting in an authorized capacity) signs an agreement which commits the FGC to a payment for goods or services received or to be received by the FGC;  In such a case, it is understood that the officer is merely representing the FGC and that a contingent collective liability for all members of the FGC is undertaken.
  4. By accepting membership, FGC members acknowledge and agree that the FGC is an informal unincorporated recreational group and accordingly, that each member assumes personal responsibility for his/her actions during all FGC play days and other events.


  1. A proposal for the amendment of the Bylaws may be made only at a general meeting of the FGC.
  2. A copy of the proposed amendment for dissemination to the membership must be submitted to the Secretary of the FGC not less than seven days preceding the meeting at which the proposal is to be made.
  3. At the general meeting during which a motion for the proposed amendment is made, seconded, and followed by discussion, the FGC Board will set a date, time, and place for the next meeting to vote on the amendment.
  4. When the amendment is voted upon, a quorum shall be twenty per cent of the FGC membership.
  5. The amendment will have passed if the votes in favor are at least equal to the next whole number higher than two thirds of the FGC membership in attendance at the time of the voting.
  6. Within sixty days of the amendment being approved, the amended FGC Bylaws shall be distributed to the FGC membership by posting on the FGC website or by such other means as the Board may determine. 
  7. If the amendment fails, it may not be resubmitted in less than one year from the date of its rejection.


  1. A petition for dissolution of the FGC signed by two thirds of the membership, presented to the FGC Board, and ratified by the FGC Board shall begin the dissolution process.
  2. Payment of FGC debt (if any) and an orderly distribution of FGC assets (as directed by a majority vote of the FGC membership) shall effectively dissolve the FGC.



Effective January 1, 2019

(Print in landscape)

The FGC Board approved the following changes that incorporate USGA and R&A updates effective January 1, 2019.   They were announced at the FGC meeting on December 12, 2018. The intent is to summarize basic existing and new rules and processes and to remind golfers of local conditions.

 From the new USGA rules:  "All players are expected to play in the spirit of the game by:

  • Acting with integrity.  Example: by following the Rules, applying all penalties, and being honest in all aspects of play.
  • Showing consideration to others. Example:  by playing at a prompt pace, looking out for the safety of others, and not distracting the play of another player.
  • Taking good care of the course.  Example: by replacing divots, smoothing bunkers, repairing ball-marks, and not causing unnecessary damage to the course." 


USGA Rule Modified by the FGC


  1. LOST OR OUT OF BOUNDS (= WHITE STAKES) BALLS: In addition to USGA options, the player who determines his ball is either lost or out of bounds (OB - per white stakes or course rules such as being across a road/fence), normally hits a provisional ball.  If the golfer did not realize the ball might be lost or OB, he/she may go to the area where the ball became lost/OB and drop another ball somewhere on the fairway no closer to the hole for a 2 stroke penalty.  Example: A tee shot heads towards the woods or OB.  The player either does not find the ball or discovers it is OB.  He/she places another ball on the fairway and is hitting 4.  (If his/her 1stshot found the fairway, but the 2nd shot is lost/OB, he/she is then hitting 5 at the point the ball was lost/OB). 

         Note that once a provisional ball is struck from a point beyond where the original ball is deemed lost/OB, it then becomes the ball in play even if the original is found later.

(AAA League– with ball out of bounds or lost, drop ball within 2 club lengths or to nearest playable lie (one that will allow an unrestricted full swing) no closer to the hole, 1 stroke penalty).   

Where a dropped ball must come to rest


New rule: The ball must come to rest in the relief area where it was dropped. If the ball comes to rest outside of the relief area, the player will drop a second time in the relief area. If the ball again comes to rest outside the relief area, the player will place it where the ball first touched the ground on the second drop.

Current rule: The ball must be re-dropped if it rolls to any of the nine specified areas such as rolling more than 2 club-lengths from where the dropped ball struck the ground.

 Dropping procedure

How to drop a ball


New rule: The ball must be dropped straight down from knee height while in a standing position).

Current rule: Stand erect, hold the ball at shoulder height and arm’s length and drop.


Measuring the size of the relief area where a ball must be dropped and played

New rule: The relief area is measured by measuring 1 or 2 club lengths (which is defined as the longest club the player has during the round, other than a putter).

Current rule: Measured by using 1 or 2 club-lengths (with any club the player selects).


Time allowed for a ball search


New rule: A ball is lost if not found in three minutes.

 Current rule: A ball is lost if not found in five minutes.

Substituting ball when taking relief


New rule: A player may always substitute a ball when taking relief.

Current rule: The player must use the original ball when taking free relief (with exceptions); a substituted ball is allowed only when taking penalty relief.

Taking relief for a ball embedded in its own pitch mark


New rule: A player may take relief without penalty for an embedded ball anywhere in the “general area," unless a Local Rule has been adopted restricting relief only to areas cut to fairway height or less. The "general area" is the new term for “through the green.”

Current rule: Relief is allowed only in areas cut to fairway height or less, unless a Local Rule has been adopted allowing relief anywhere (except in sand) through the green.


2. UNPLAYABLE BALL IN THE WOODS OR ROUGH: The above LOST OR OUT OF BOUNDS BALLS exception could also apply here. Example: a player hits a tee shot into the woods (but not OB or a lateral water hazard = red stakes) and finds that it unplayable. Options of dropping 2 club lengths away no closer to the hole or moving the ball back on a line between the pin and the ball would both keep the ball unplayable.  The player may take a 2 stroke penalty and put the ball on the fairway no closer to the hole. 


3.  WATER HAZARDS (= YELLOW STAKES):  Per USGA rules, a player must carry the water hazard or keep trying.  However, if there is a drop area marked, the player may use that and  take a 1 stroke penalty. 

Two A League exceptions: 

A player who has hit a ball into the water hazard on a hole with no drop area, and feels he/she will not be able to carry it with the next shot, may elect to drop the ball on the other side of the hazard with a 2 stroke penalty.  

Since we play so many different courses, if a player shoots as though there is no drop area (example: hitting 1 ball into the water, then hitting the next over), and later discovers a drop area on the other side of the water, he/she may elect to play the drop area as though he/she only hit 1 ball in the water with no second shot.

Note: If a ball crosses the water hazard, hits on the other side, and then rolls back into the hazard, it is deemed to not have crossed.


4.  LATERAL WATER HAZARD (= RED STAKES): If a ball is in a lateral water hazard, or if it known or virtually certain to be in it (it may be dry), for a 1 stroke penalty, the player may


a. Play it as nearly as possible at the spot from which the original ball was last played; or

b.  Drop it behind the water hazard, keeping the point at which the original ball last crossed the margin of the water hazard directly between the hole and the spot on which the ball is dropped, with no limit to how far behind the water hazard the ball may be dropped;

c.  Or if the ball last crossed the margin of a lateral water hazard, drop a ball outside the hazard within two club lengths but not nearer the hole than the point where the original ball last crossed the margin of the water hazard.  This USGA detail is included to be complete. Option c is almost always used.  Note: The player drops within 2 club lengths of the red stakes margin, whether or not that provides a shot to the green. Of course, if a ball sitting in either a yellow or red stake hazard is playable, a golfer may choose to hit it.

 Since we play so many different courses, if a player assumes a ball is lost or OB and plays a provisional ball, then discovers it’s really in a lateral water hazard, he/she may ignore the provisional ball.


(AAA League with water hazard: On a lay-up shot, drop the ball within 2 club lengths of the hazard line where the ball entered.  1 stroke penalty.  On a crossing shot, if there is no designated drop area, drop the ball on the far side within 2 club lengths from the hazard line on an extension of the direction the ball was heading. 1 stroke penalty).


Expanded use of red-marked penalty areas

New rule: Committees are given the discretion to mark all penalty areas as red so that lateral relief is always allowed (but they may still mark penalty areas as yellow where they consider it appropriate).

Current rule: All water hazards should be marked yellow, except where their location on the course makes it impossible or unreasonable to drop behind the hazard; only when this is the case may these water hazards be marked red as lateral water hazards.

Elimination of the opposite side relief option for red penalty areas


New rule: A player is no longer allowed to take relief from a red penalty area on the opposite side from where the ball last entered that penalty area, unless the Committee adopts a Local Rule allowing it.

Current rule: A player is always allowed to take relief from the opposite side of a red-marked lateral water hazard.


5.  ON THE FAIRWAY ONLY: We play in a variety of conditions so “Winter Rules” apply all the time; that is, a player on the fairway may, with no penalty, roll the ball over. If the ball is plugged or muddy, it may be lifted, cleaned, and placed without penalty. Where there are patches without grass on the fairway, the ball may be moved to grass that is no closer to the hole.


6.  IN THE ROUGH: The ball may not be touched except when hitting the ball in any direction may endanger equipment or limbs, such as a ball resting on stones, gravel, or tree roots, or lying in casual water, or embedded.  The player may move his/her ball the minimum distance necessary to eliminate the problem with no penalty.  This allowance is not to be used to eliminate an unplayable lie. 1 stroke penalty


 7.  IN A SAND BUNKER: If a ball lies in a footprint, the player can lift ball, rake sand, and replace the ball where it was.


Player moves or touches a loose impediment in a bunker when the ball is in the bunker

New rule: No penalty.

Current rule: Loss of hole/2 stroke penalty (with exceptions).

Player touches sand in a bunker with his or her hand or a club when the ball is in the bunker

New rule: No penalty except when a player touches sand (1) with his or her hand or club to test the conditions of the bunker,  (2) in making a practice swing, (3) with the club in the area right behind or in front of the ball or (4) in making the backswing for the stroke.

Current rule: Any touching of sand with hand or club results in loss of hole/2 stroke penalty (with exceptions).

Unplayable ball relief options


New rule: A player may take relief outside the bunker back on the line from the hole through where ball was at rest for 2 stroke penalty. 

Current rule: No relief outside the bunker (other than in playing from where the player’s last stroke was made).


8.  PUTTING:  Continuous putting is encouraged to speed up play, but is the discretion of each player. The new rule allowing the flag to be kept in while putting can help keep play moving.

To eliminate measuring or inconsistent practices, all putts of any length are to be putted out in the A league.  (AAA League players may pick up the ball up for a 1 stroke penalty when the ball is “within the leather. ”  Lay down a standard size putter with the head in the hole; if the ball does not touch the leather (grip), the player may pick it up.) 

Replacing a ball on the putting green when it moves from its spot after it already had been lifted and replaced


New rule: The ball must always be replaced on its original spot, even if it was blown by the wind or moved for no clear reason.

Current rule: The ball is replaced only if a player or outside agency caused it to move; otherwise, the ball is played from its new location.

Putting green

    Repairing damage on the putting green


New rule: A player may repair almost any damage (including spike marks and animal damage but not including natural imperfections) on the putting green.

Current rule: A player may only repair ball marks or old hole plugs on the putting green.

Putting green

Player touches the line of putt or touches the putting green in pointing out a target


New rule: No penalty, so long as doing so does not improve the conditions for the player’s stroke.

Current rule: Loss of hole/2 stroke penalty (with exceptions).

Putting green

Putting with an unattended flagstick left in the hole

New rule: No penalty if a ball played from the putting green (or anywhere else) hits the unattended flagstick in hole.

Current rule: Loss of hole/2 stroke penalty if the ball is played from the putting green and hits the unattended flagstick in hole.

Penalty areas

Areas the Committee may mark as a penalty area (where relief with stroke penalty is allowed)

New rule: Red- and yellow-marked “penalty areas” may now cover areas of desert, jungle, lava rock, etc., in addition to areas of water.

Current rule: The Committee may only mark an area of water as a “water hazard.”

Penalty areas

Player moves loose impediments, touches the ground with hand or club or grounds the club in a penalty area when the ball is in the penalty area

New rule: No penalty.

Current rule: Loss of hole/2 stroke penalty (with exceptions).


9.  LEAF RULE: If a player loses a ball in leaves on or near a fairway where one would fully expect it to be found, the player, with the agreement of all golfers in the group, may drop a ball with no penalty where it was deemed lost. This exception is intended for fairway or first/second cut rough areas, not woods or deep rough. This applies year around.


10.  RANGEFINDERS: Distance measuring devices are permitted.

Use of distance-measuring devices                   


New rule: The use of DMDs is allowed, unless a Local Rule has been adopted prohibiting their use.

Current rule: DMD use is prohibited, unless a Local Rule has been adopted allowing their use.



   Local Rules, Conditions, and Guidelines


11.  GENERAL:  A helpful rule of thumb on how far to move a ball: If no penalty applies to a given situation (example: moving away from an electrical box), use 1 club length; if there is a penalty (example: lateral water hazard), use 2 club lengths.

It is also generally useful to read the scorecard of each course to be able to respect--and sometimes benefit from--local rules.  Examples: A free drop from certain positions; environmentally sensitive areas to stay out of; or what defines out of bounds. Note that area courses vary on the use of white lot markers.  Check the scorecard to verify if they also mark out of bounds.


12.  SLOW PLAY GUIDE:  Sometimes a group may fall behind, creating a problem for the golf course and spoiling the game for following groups. Since threesomes will normally play a bit faster than foursomes, monthly schedulers should start them first. The FGC defines slow play when either a course official warns them, or there is a one or more hole gap ahead of the group, or the following group has been held up on two consecutive holes.

Saving just a few minutes per hole could shorten a round by 30 to 60 minutes.  Unless it is a cart-path-only day, a round should be played in 4.5 hours or less.  While it is every player’s responsibility to play at a reasonable pace, the team captain, who is usually the driver, is responsible to address slow play.  There are many remedies for slow play, including:


-   Mark each ball recognizably; 

·   Limit practice swings and setup time;

·   Play ready golf;

·   Head towards your ball with the appropriate clubs while other players are addressing and hitting theirs;

·   On cart-path-only days, take all clubs that you might need; 

·   Watch wayward shots and line them up with a fixed landmark such as a tree;

·   Limit searches for lost balls to 3 minute; not everybody in the foursome needs to search;

·   Line up your putt while waiting your turn unless you distract others about to putt; then consider putting out continuously; and

 ·   When your group is falling behind or the following one is waiting for yours to leave the green, move on before bagging clubs and scoring. 


From the USGA


Recommendations on how to play promptly


New rule: Recommends that players make each stroke in no more than 40 seconds, and usually in less time.

Current rule: No recommendations are given.


Playing out of turn in stroke play


New rule: no penalty.  “Ready golf” is encouraged when it can be done in a safe and responsible way.

Current rule: No penalty, but the current Rule implies that playing out of turn is wrong or is not allowed.


Other changes to help pace of play


Other new rules: Reduced time for search, allowing more areas to be marked as penalty areas, expanded use of red penalty areas, the simplified dropping procedure and allowing a player to putt with the flagstick in the hole.


New alternative form of stroke  play



New rule: A new “Maximum Score” form of stroke play is recognized, where a player’s score for a hole is capped at a maximum score. (In the FGC, the cap is three over par, e.g., 6 for a par 3, 7 for a par 4, and 8 for a par 5) that is set by the Committee.


13.  HANDICAPS: Handicaps for each day’s round will be calculated by the FGC system from a player’s Handicap Index posted on the club website for that course.  A player should pick up his ball    after the getting the maximum strokes allowed for a hole. Initial handicap for new FGC members shall be their GHIN score or 24 for A and 30 for AAA League players.

  • For handicap calculation purposes only: The league handicapper shall adjust the scorecard results when calculating the handicaps as below:
    • For 20 and above handicap players: No adjustment is needed--covered by the 8 maximum strokes/hole rule. 
    • For 10-19 handicap players: No higher than 7 on any hole. 
    •  For 9 and below handicap players: No higher than double bogie on any hole.

14.  WHEN THE RULES APPLY. These rules apply to all A league outings and tournaments.


15.  DRIVING ASSIGNMENTS AND SAFETY: Drivers who do not feel medically or physically comfortable driving should ask the month’s MoM to schedule someone else. Also, drivers should not     drink alcoholic beverages on the day of play.


16.  SUGGESTIONS: Please submit in writing your suggestions on rules and guidelines to the FGC Board for possible future inclusion.

Click on "Rules" for 2019 rules as modified.






The following history was written by John O'Sullivan to commemorate the death of Gerry Safferman:

The Fearrington Golf Club was launched in July of 1990. As a prelude to a brief history of that period and Gerry Safferman's role in those early days, a listing of the FGC presidents follows: Gerry Safferman {1990), Dave Earnest {1991), Frank Henrici {1992), Jim Leftwich {1993), Don Jones (1994), Dick Melville (1995), Bill Hay {1996), Dick Maag {1997), Don Judd {1998), Walt Lambert {1999), Ray Ivey (2000), Chuck Giardino (2001), Judy Gurlitz (2002),John Karvazy {2003), Jim Kirkhoff(2004), Snuffy Howe(2005) and Mike Cotter(2006). The first two of these presidents are now deceased and five others no longer reside in Fearrington but the legacy of all lives on as evidenced by the continued existence and advancement of the FGC. The comments which follow are of course restricted to the formation and early activities of the FGC with particular emphasis on the involvement of Gerry Safferman in that regard.

Gerry and Lillian arrived in Fearrington in August of 1984. Longtime residents of Long Island, they had mutual interests in dogs, film, music, sailing, and golf--not necessarily in that order. Gerry also had a major interest in military history especially that of the civil War. They both looked forward to their annual visits to Gettysburg, some other civil War battleground, or, for a change of pace, to Annapolis. During their working lives, Lillian was an attorney and later in retirement served as President of the FHA. Gerald's background was insurance; to his credit never once did he broach the subject in my presence.

As the Saffermans arrived, the O'Sullivans were leaving. Mary and I taught at city Colleges of Chicago and were returning to Chicago for the fall semester. We had our Fearrington house constructed in May of 1979 but would not occupy it full-time until May of 1988 when I followed Mary into retirement. Like ships that pass in the night we would not get to know the Saffermans very well at this point but agreed that people whose most visible possessions upon arriving in Fearrington were two dogs and two sets of golf clubs were likely to take root on Shadowbrook and in Fearrington very quickly.

During the latter half of the 1980's the Fearrington population increased dramatically and along with that also its supply of golfers. For years there had been talk of forming a Fearrington golf club. There was plenty of golf activity but it was largely unorganized. Not having a course of their own, the Fearrington golfers formed loose units of players who would wander the fairways and woods of the Hillandale, Finley, Sanford, and Twin Lakes golf courses. Some of our golfers belonged to the Triangle Seniors and would participate in monthly tournaments offered by that organization. For those not already members, however, the Triangle Seniors group had a waiting list of about two years. There were also members of local country clubs who could get as much golf as they liked at such as the Chapel Hill Country Club, for example. In addition, reduced rates for golf for a large number of courses were available for seniors by payment of a nominal annual fee to the sponsoring organization. The "Sandhill Seniors" was the most popular such discounted golfing arrangement available to FGC seniors.

Obviously there were ample opportunities for Fearrington golfers to play under a variety of conditions but there was no linkage, no common bond. To give form and substance to a uniquely Fearringtonian golfing experience, a local club was a precondition. Gerry Safferman saw this need and urged others to give serious consideration to the formation of a local club to meet our common golfing needs. As a result of Gerry's prodding, the first meeting of Fearrington golfers was held at the Gathering Place on Wednesday, July 25, 1990. Although a membership listing may be of little interest to more recent members of the FGC, such a listing may prove nostalgic to longtime members of the FGC. For that reason let's take a look at the charter members at that first FGC meeting in the order in which they signed the attendance roster:

Bob Herring, Don O'Rourke, George Steward, Bill Williams, Mario Rosica, Walt Kornman, Jack Cowan, Ed Zelles, Ralph Gleason, Bob Totte, Bob Anderson, Chuck Helmick, Bob Condolff, Don Pike, Frank Kappler, John Wait, Bill Hartland, Frank McCloskey, Jim McManus, John O'Sullivan, John Dalzell, Bill Lawder, Pete Gaffney, Des Reilly, Gerald Safferman, Ed Hyatt, Jim Cochran, Harold Cray, John Hunt, and Bob Shock.

Of the thirty members at that first meeting of the FGC ten have died, ten have moved from Fearrington, and ten still reside in Fearrington but two have discontinued their membership in the FGC.

The first meeting unstructured as it was did hold out the hope that through a free exchange of comments, ideas, and suggestions some kind of focus or sense of direction would emerge. The consensus was that there was an apparent need for a local Fearrington golf association that would enable each golfer to playa greater variety of golf courses and to share golfing experiences with many new partners. To get some sort of organizational structure started, the following volunteers agreed to assume the positions that follow until a more permanent arrangement could be made:

Steering Committee Bob Herring

Tournament Committee Bob Condolff

Treasurer and Records John O'Sullivan Secretary Bob Shock

It was further agreed that in order to have some specific golfing FGC operation on the drawing board that the group would hold its first monthly tournament at the Sanford Golf Course the fo1lowing month.

A followup meeting was held at Gerry Safferman's house at 1PM on Saturday, July 28, 1990. At that meeting the following officers and chairmen were appointed and agreed to serve for the balance of 1990:

President Gerald Safferman Vice president John Dalzell

Treasurer John O'Sullivan Secretary Bob Shock

Chairman, steering committee Bob Herring

Chairman, tournament committee Bob Condolff

It was decided that each FGC member should be charged an initiation fee of $10 with annual dues to be set at the first end-of-the year annual meeting in December. At this time the FGC was called the FGA (Fearrington Golf Association). At a later date, Bob Condolff pointed out that the USGA defined our group as a club, not an association. Not to be out of step with the USGA, FGA quietly became FGC. The formal change of name did not occur until September of 1991. As scheduled, the first FGC tournament was held at the Sanford Golf Course on Wednesday, August 22, 1990 at which forty-four players competed. A modified Callaway system was used to determine the winners and prizes were awarded during the course of a hamburger cookout.

The second FGC tournament was held at the Quail Ridge Golf Course on October 31, 1990 at which fifty-five FGC players competed. Prizes were awarded the winners and all players enjoyed a picnic spread under a tent adjacent to the clubhouse. The success of our first two tournaments confirmed the belief that this was a club whose time had come.

At the time of the 1990 annual meeting on December 6th, the FGC membership had increased to seventy-eight consisting of sixty-seven men and eleven women. At the annual meeting President Safferman expressed satisfaction with the FGC in that we had gotten our club launched and operational although much remained to be done to make for a well balanced golfing organization. It was hoped that 1991's FGC leadership would result in the adoption of FGC By-laws, establish FGC rules of play (if USGA rules were to be modified), increase the FGC membership (especially the number of women), continue to improve our image on local courses (speeding up play, in particular), and to launch an annual fundraising tournament for a worthy cause.

At this meeting the first annual election was held and resulted in the election of the members slated by the nominating committee at the October 1 meeting. These members were to meet in January to determine which offices each would hold. The listing which £ollows indicates the elected officers and the positions for which they were chosen in January, 1991.

Dave Earnest President ,George Steward Vice president, Bob Shock Secretary John O'Sullivan Treasurer and Bob Condolff Tournament Chairman.

At this point the FGC was an operating reality and Gerry decided it was time for him to step aside from an active leadership role. However, Gerry never ceased to point out to all who would listen that while quite properly enjoying FGC activities we have a continuing obligation to give back to the community from which we have received so much. This we should do both as a club and as individuals.

While not choosing the ordeal, Gerry himself almost gave his all when he was seriously wounded by sniper fire in the Spring of 1945 at Okinawa. After many months of hospitalization and years of chronic pain it was fitting that both he and his wife Lillian spent much of their retirement back in the hospital--UNC Hospitals as long-term volunteers. As mentioned earlier, Lillian also served a term as FHA president. During the last two years of Gerry's life, their years of caring for others made their mutual burdens easier to bear.

On a personal note over the years Gerry and I discussed many issues--some important, some not. At times our positions were polarized but Gerry never allowed the exchange to become bitter or personal. At some point we could both retreat gracefully as Gerry would say "Whatever!" followed by "Goodnight, kid." But, Gerry, just so I can get the last word in, "Goodnight, kid."


Past Presidents


2019   George Lankevich

2018   Vince Tollers 

2017   Gene Rogers

2016   Gary Kibler

2015   Gene Rogers

2014   Gordon Barg

2013   Ron Wiegerink

2012   Richard Parish

2011   Denny Holland

2010   Ed Bonahue

2009   El Tremblay

2008   Bruce Birch

2007   Jim Clark

2006   Mike Cotter

2005   Snuffy Howe

2004   Jim Kirkhoff

2003   John Karvazy

2002   Judy Gurlitz

2001   Chuck Giardino

2000   Ray Ivey

1999   Walt Lambert

1998   Don Judd

1997   Dick Maag

1996   Bill Hay

1995   Dick Melville

1994   Don Jones

1993   Jim Leftwich  

1992   Frank Henrici

1991   Dave Earnest

1990   Gerry Safferman



Memorial Trophy Winners

2018       Jack Kowal, John Karvazy, Malcom Laner, and Frank Huisking 

2017       Malcolm Laner, Boyd Webb, and Richard Beane

2016       Gary Kibler and Peter Vig

2015       Joe Labenson and Matt Reardon

2014       Richard Parish and Tom Townsend

2013       Pat Murphy and Paul Cannon

2012       David Chapman and George Lankevich

2011       Joe Lyons and Jack Tredinnick

2010       Richard Siebold and John Custer

2009       Bert Bowe and Robert Eby

2008       David Ayres and Ed Bonahue

2007       Bert Bowe and Robert Eby

2006       Joe Lyons and Chuck Giardino

The winners from 2006-2017 are listed on the trophy.  Subsequent ones from 2018 will be awarded Golf Bag Tags.

2020 Officers

President – Michael Manning

Vice President/ President Elect - Jim Leatherberry

Treasurer – Gene Rogers

Secretary – Frank Huisking

Membership – Jack Kowal

Tournaments/Players - Tad McArdle with Ward Johnson assisting


"A" MOM Coordinator - Boyd Webb

 "AAA" MOM Coordinator - Dave Chapman

GHIN Coordinators - Gary Kibler and Bob Baker



ANNUAL DUES: $25 payable by March 1st. Send checks to David Chapman, Treasurer, or drop them in the FGC mail box at the Kiosk by the Gathering Place. Initial club membership amount for new members remains at $20.

It would be nice to have some kind of welcome-to-FGC message here.