How did you get into the sports turf industry?
My dad has worked with Grant (McKnight) on and off since before I was born. When he started Natural Sand Company and then DuraEdge my dad started working there again. I started working at the plant bagging product. Then I began working on the construction side with Homefield. I worked with Mack (Jaehnig) on his crew for about six months, before getting the opportunity to come to Utah and work with Cam (Toone).
Did you have any mentors in the industry?
Mack was the first guy I worked for on the field construction and install side and I learned a lot from him. Then after coming out West, Cam has been a good mentor and also Brian Soukup. Brian works with the Salt Lake Bees. Seeing how a professional groundskeeper takes care of their field has helped me pick up things that help me now on other jobs.
What are your favorite parts of your job?
Getting to travel around and going to different colleges and professional stadiums. It’s pretty cool to work at places you see on TV afterwards and can say, “hey I was there.” Also, showing up to a job and seeing what it looks like before and getting to see the transformation afterwards is also rewarding. Seeing the reactions from the coaches and groundskeepers is pretty cool too.
What are the biggest challenges in your line of work?
When you get to a job, figuring out how to make things work together can be challenging, especially with the grading side of it. You need to figure out where you want the water to shed off the fields and each field is different. It’s a harder part of the job, but you get to do some creative problem solving. In the end though it’s pretty rewarding.
What are some of your favorite activities outside of work?
I like being outside and enjoy most outdoor activities. In Utah, I like being in the mountains and doing some hiking. I just got a dirt bike so I’ve found some trails around here to ride too which is fun. Being in Utah, I get to do some skiing in the colder months and I’ve always enjoyed golf as well.
About DuraEdge Products
Based in Grove City, PA, DuraEdge Products specializes in the production of top-quality products and services for the baseball and softball industry to provide long-term soil solutions, and to cover all the bases for safe and playable infields for the Sports Turf Industry across the United States and abroad.