CLAY COUNTY — Mike Shriner has had his eye on the gig for a while, 22 years to be exact.
“I said when I was at age 19 that I wanted to be the Paradise Pointe superintendent,” said Shriner, who started his role with the Clay County golf complex at Smithville Lake in April of 2018. “My best friend’s dad was the superintendent at one point. I knew at age 16 that I’d be a superintendent.”
The superintendent said he always had an appreciation for the local golf courses near Smithville.
“I loved this property when I was young,” said Shriner, who served as the Shiloh Springs superintendent in Platte City for 12 years prior to taking the Paradise Pointe job. “I worked here as a seasonal back in 1996-97, so I was familiar with the course layout and itself. My parents built a house over here so when I worked over here, just the familiarity with the golf course; I knew it was a place that I wanted to be.”
After 16 months on the job, Shriner fielded questions from the Courier-Tribune about challenges the course has recently faced, the importance he places on building relationships with golfers and why he’s looking toward to the future.
How would you assess your first year-plus
on the job?
“It’s been a little bit of a whirlwind. Last year when I started we had drought conditions. Year two started with the lake flooding so I’ve seen both sides of the spectrum, but it’s been extremely busy. We’ve done a lot of projects already, we’ve put in new pump stations to provide for the water. We’re focusing our efforts on the greens and trying to get people to believe that the little details make a difference. The greens have been more consistent and they’ll be rolled more often,” he said.
How has the implementation of the new irrigation system impacted operation?
“Our irrigation system was lacking a lot. It should be more predictable on the consistency that we can provide. The players have been very positive. The things that we’ve done have been disruptive, but the players have been receptive,” Shriner said. “I’m getting compliments weekly that they’re seeing improvement to the course. … I haven’t had time to truly focus 100% of my time on giving good turf conditions, but I’m getting positive feedback.”
Why do you choose
to spend your time
on the course with your players?
“That’s just who I am. ... Mother Nature is kind of undefeated. If she wants to win, she will. It’s probably why I stayed at Shiloh so long, it was more the people than the course,” the superintendent said. “I want to give the people and the golfers what they want.”
What does the future hold for Paradise Pointe?
“I’m very excited and I think we’ll reach all the goals we have set out. We want to hold better events out here that the people deserve like the high school state championships and other bigger events,” Shriner said.