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Cambrian ranked RTJ#039;s top stop

Although golf may be a game for the individual, maintaining a great course requires a team – something the staff at Cambrian Ridge knows a lot about.

"The key to our success is teamwork. It takes all of us – the food and beverage staff, the golf shop staff, the maintenance crew – it takes all of us to make the customers happy," stated Sean Curry, the director of golf at Cambrian Ridge. "We essentially have 280,000 bosses – the number of members of the Retirement Systems of Alabama."

That teamwork, along with a great course, has brought Cambrian Ridge to the forefront of the best golf courses, both nationally and internationally.

In 1994, only months after the opening of the course, Cambrian Ridge received its first honor and was voted by Golf Digest as the third best new golf course in the country and 13th in the list of America's Top 50 Affordable Courses. Not too long after that, Southern Living gave the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail the People's Choice Award for favorite public courses from 1996 – 2000.

"What I love most about working at a public course is the variety of people that I get to meet," said Curry. "Basically, you never know who you'll see. Between March 1 and April 30, people from every state and several countries come here to play golf."

But the winnings didn't stop there. In 2000, Golf Magazine named Cambrian Ridge as the 37th best course in the country and USA Today ranked the Trail in the Top 10 of the best travel destinations in the world.

Cambrian Ridge's most recent award came

this month when Golf Digest ranked it as the number one course on the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail and the sixth best course in the State of Alabama.

According to The Trail Guide, "the main objective of the Retirement Systems of Alabama was to utilize the Trail' to help expand tourism, recruit new industry and attract retirees, thus strengthening the state while improving the quality of life for all Alabamians.

"The idea behind the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail was to bring more tourism to Alabama through golf. With courses throughout the state, one could fly to Mobile and play the course there , rent a car, and then within a couple of hours, be at another course , say in Dothan or here in Greenville, until finally reaching the top of the state in Huntsville. Some people take a week to travel the Trail, some people take two weeks" said Curry.

Construction on the first course began in 1992 in Birmingham and within one year, all of the courses were opened.

As for future expansion, Curry said he thinks any plans now would be to add holes to existing courses.

As for the future, Cambrian Ridge has a lot planned. On June 2-3, fifty teams from six different states will come to Greenville to participate in the Third Annual Father-Son Championship.

"Our goal was to have 100 players and we made it," said Curry.

September also will bring some activity to the course with a National Golf Association championship scheduled and a visit from Microsoft, which produces the number one best-selling computer golf game called Links. "Microsoft will be here to feature Cambrian Ridge and Greenville in its 2002 edition of Links. Now that's really something to say about the number one small city in America that also has the number one golf trail."