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TriCure™ delivers strength at Stourbridge GC

TriCure™ delivers strength at Stourbridge GC: A fateful combination of high footfall, hot weather and a failing irrigation system has seen the tees at Stourbridge Golf Club struggling to retain all-important grass coverage in recent years.

That was until Head Greenkeeper Steve Harvey switched to a granular feeding programme with trusted nutritional partner Headland Amenity. This, coupled with the increased field longevity and flexibility of application of TriCure AD™ Granular wetting agent, has resulted in a transformational improvement in tee strength and playability.

TriCure™ delivers strength at Stourbridge GC

TriCure™ delivers strength at Stourbridge GC

Previously holding the Guinness World Record for the smallest acreage 18-hole course, the maintenance of Stourbridge for Steve and his team of four is challenging – with the sites free-draining nature only compounding issues with footfall crossover and compaction. “A wetting agent and fertiliser programme has always been available to us throughout the season but being liquid-based previously, we seemed to struggle to get applications out due to a mixture of staff availability, sprayer pressure or weather windows” explains Steve.

“The well-documented drought of summer 2018 really took it’s toll on the tees. We didn’t have irrigation capacity to maintain these as well as the greens, so we lost massive amounts of grass cover which in turn led to a lot of weed ingress, particularly Yarrow which really took hold. 2019 saw record rainfall and an increase in visitor numbers which meant that when we got to the spring of 2020, where COVID restrictions also began limiting the mechanical maintenance we could carry out, the tees were not in a good way.”

Steve switched the tee programme over to C-Complex® 5-2-10 and Xtend® 15-2-20+MgO later in the season, with TriCure AD™ Granular wetting agent, applied in five applications at a rate of 12.5g/m2 through the hottest and driest months. “The ease of application and logistics compared to trying to manoeuvre the sprayer round the small, misshapen, push-up tees has resulted in a more targeted approach and results which speak for themselves. We have the freedom and flexibility to apply TriCure when spray windows wouldn’t have previously allowed, and the field longevity we get on our free-draining profile is significantly improved. Following the success of the programme last year, continuing it this year is a no-brainer to sustain the strength and resilience the tees now demonstrate.”

Containing the same active ingredients as in liquid TriCure AD™ soil surfactant, TriCure AD™ Granular offers an effective alternative to spraying – preventing hydrophobic conditions on areas that may otherwise be hard to access. TriCure AD™ Granular utilises DG-Lite dispersible granule technology as a carrier to ensure fast solubilisation with no pick-up or residue left after normal irrigation.

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GreenMech’s EVO delivers big performance

GreenMech’s EVO delivers big performance: Reflecting the growth in the company and scope of the projects undertaken, Maidstone-based Day Tree Fellers have just purchased their 4th GreenMech woodchipper – going from the pedestrian CS100 unit up to the mighty 45hp EVO 165D-45LE unit in the space of just six years!

Delivering powerful, yet surprisingly quiet, performance the EVO 165D-45LE hasn’t missed a beat since Owner Les Day took delivery of the unit in December 2020.

GreenMech’s EVO delivers big performance

GreenMech’s EVO delivers big performance

Les, along with one of his sons, started Day Tree Fellers in 2015 before another two sons came on board to complete the current line-up. “When we first started out, we looked at a couple of different chipper manufacturers and were instantly impressed by GreenMech’s willingness to help and their general service level” explains Les. “At the time we went for the 4” CS100 pedestrian unit, and quickly followed that up with two turntable QuadChip 160’s.”

As the nature of their work evolved to span both domestic and commercial projects, it became evident that they needed even more productivity and the ability to process even larger timber. “What the EVO 165D-45LE lacks by way of a turntable, it more than makes up for in other areas! It works so quickly offering fantastic throughput rates but I particularly like that you can manually slow the feed rollers down to process any particularly large diameter timbers. The higher horsepower Kubota diesel engine handles this with ease and will hopefully give us years of reliable service.”

“Along with the No-Stress control system, another thing that’s impressed me is how quiet this machine is which is excellent, particularly for work in domestic areas.” As standard, the entire EVO range features an all-steel bonnet and additional fan to help reduce overall sound power and sound pressure. This, combined with GreenMech’s disc-blade chipping system, means the EVO is one of the quietest chipper collections available.

“It’s also been great that the experience we’ve had with GreenMech and their dealer network throughout the latest purchase was just as good as we enjoyed all those years ago – the factory were even able to accommodate fitting my machine with a bespoke folding output chute to suit my available storage. Nothing is too much trouble and it’s that level of service, and the reliable performance, that keeps me coming back every time.”

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100% fescue delivers 100% satisfaction

100% fescue from Johnsons delivers 100% satisfaction: Doing a fantastic job at retaining the natural links characteristics, Perranporth Golf Club Course Manager Rob Cook has been delighted with his switch to Johnsons J Fescue mix.

Having used Johnsons Sports Seed at his previous club, Rob swapped with confidence two years ago, sowing the greens with a combination of Chewings and Slender fescues, with another 100% fescue blend, J Premier Fairway, employed across the fairways.

100% fescue from Johnsons delivers 100% satisfaction

100% fescue from Johnsons delivers 100% satisfaction

Picking up where the previous Course Manager had left off, maintaining the fescue species and low inputs was something Rob was keen to continue with when he took over three and a half years ago. “Once I used the stock of seed we had, I got in touch with my local Johnsons rep Ian Barnett who went through the mixtures available. J Fescue was the obvious choice for the greens, and for the fairways I was after a mixture of all the fescues – Hard, Sheeps, Strong, Chewings and Slender Creeping Red Fescue. J Premier Fairway ticked all of the boxes, straight off the shelf. The results have been absolutely fantastic!”

Rob usually overseeds the greens between one and three times a year, the last time was September 2020 – the germination from which is still visible. “J Fescue delivers high shoot density and strong colour which lasts. Ordinarily, I would be planning to overseed again in April but with the greens in such good condition and the upcoming return of golfers we believe we’ll be able to wait until our next maintenance week in September.”

“On the fairways we have a ‘members volunteer divot party’ who divot all 18 fairways with the J Premier Fairway mix over a two-week period – and through lockdown it’s been even more frequent.” The combination of more frequent seeding and the higher quality cultivars included in J Premier Fairway has meant that the artificial fairway mats that members were required to use over the winter period are a thing of the past! “We’ve made fantastic strides forward in terms of year-round plant health and strength.”

“With divot work ongoing and a bumper season of play expected, I’ve got no doubts at all that the surfaces will be fit and ready to cope with the sustained levels of play” Rob concludes.

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Redexim range delivers versatility for overseeding

Redexim range delivers versatility for overseeding: The provision of favourable germination and establishment conditions are essential to the success of any overseeding operation.

Seeds will differ in terms of the amount of light, moisture and temperature required which will therefore determine the time and the method in which it should be delivered. The Redexim range of overseeders encapsulate a variety of working widths, hopper capacities and delivery methods – all of which are fully adjustable to suit a variety of different seeds.

Redexim range delivers versatility for overseeding

Redexim range delivers versatility for overseeding

The Redexim Speed-Seed range delivers seed into pockets generated by a spiked sarel roller. This  creates 990 holes per m2, with the seeds swept in via a rear-mounted brush. The recently re-modelled range features a new variable seed rate calibration system – which makes ratio adjustments simple and accurate, while a new mixing bar and individual seeding elements ensure good, even distribution and less wastage. Available in four width options – ranging from 1.1m up to 2.3m – the Speed-Seed is ideal for fine turf and quick delivery across larger areas where drill lines need to be avoided.

For improved seed to soil contact, or in situations where high germination rates are the priority, disc seeders could be considered. The Overseeder 3D collection features discs spaced at 75mm which create a groove in which to accurately deposit the seed at depths of up to 30mm, before the roller seals the ground to protect the seed from the elements and/or the beaks of hungry birds. Thanks to its individually mounted coulters, the Overseeder 3D takes undulating ground easily in its stride, making it a great choice for golf – with a dedicated 3D 1575 lightweight version further suiting fine turf applications. In addition to the 1.5m working width of the 1575 model, a 1.2m and larger 2.0m width are also available.

Also in the disc seeder category, the Redexim Double Disc series contains three machines, the 1430A, 1830A and 2230A, offering working widths of 1.4m, 1.8m and 2.2m respectively. The concept of the Double Disc range is to deliver seed into the soil via two rows of discs, in slits 3cm apart and to a maximum depth of up to 20mm, to ensure maximum germination. A massive 230 litre hopper capacity completes the specification. The whole Double Disc range comes complete with 3-point linkage as standard, but a trailed wheel kit is available as an option.

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Kubota delivers in small, medium and large

Kubota delivers in small, medium and large: It’s Kubota all the way for the Mere Resort near Knutsford, Cheshire, where Course Manager John Quinn is in no doubt about the right choice of horsepower for a multitude of turf preparation tasks.

The 7003yd par 71 course is highly popular with hotel and corporate guests as well as members, presenting a variety of challenges from its James Braid-designed heathland and parkland setting. It also plays host to the Mere Trophy, a popular amateur tournament, won in the past by Ashley Chesters and Ernie Els.

Kubota delivers in small, medium and large

Kubota delivers in small, medium and large

John has been at the resort for five years, quickly rising up the ranks to be Course Manager, and as part of his upgrading plan looked to replace some older tractors.

“We already had an L Series and its performance and durability made the choice of Kubota a ‘no brainer’,” he says. “I decided what we needed was a small, medium and large tractor, and Kubota had the models to fit the bill, which were delivered in the summer of 2019.”

For power in a compact package and Kubota’s exclusive Bi-Speed turn for manoeuvrability, the 37hp ST 371 is ideal for greens and tighter areas but is also handy with a trailer and has the muscle to pull a small slitter.

The 50hp L2501 is a real workhorse, tackling leaf clearing duties with a Trilo vacuum and aeration with the Vertidrain.

“Its predecessor was a great tractor and to be honest would still have done more hours, but it made sense to have the latest model as there have been significant improvements. The greenkeepers all find the new L series really easy to use as it’s a lot smoother to operate, and the pto engagement is more straightforward.”

Big jobs are down to the 74hp M4072 which is fitted with a Kubota LA1365 loader, which pulls a high capacity Omarv flail collector and tackles all sorts of materials handling work from loading seeders to top dressers.

“Having the choice of tractors means that we can handle all the implements that we need, or can use them together – for example with a chipper on the ST blowing into a trailer behind the M4072, which still leaves the L2501 to work on the greens,” explains John.

“We’ve specified pallet forks as well as a bucket for the loader to get the most out of its materials handling capabilities.”

Also picked out by John as a good feature is the drop hitch, which makes hooking up big implements much easier. “The tractors are really well thought out – there’s even a slot for a spare hitch which means that you have it with you when you need it rather than leaving it on the shelf in the workshop!”

Fuel economy comes in for praise too – even when working with implements requiring high revs such as the flail collector.

“You just have to compare the savings made from having the tractors – our pto-powered blower is considerably more economical than the petrol blower it replaced.”

All servicing is carried out in-house and John reports that the tractors are also good to access and work on.

“We’ve not needed any parts yet, but our dealer GGM Groundscare is local and offered us very good support as the tractors were delivered and set up.”

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EVO 165D delivers powerful performance

EVO 165D delivers powerful performance: An EVO 165D from GreenMech has become the dominant machine on the arb fleet of Swansea-based Rooted Tree & Landscapes.

Owner Craig Mylan has been a loyal user of GreenMech woodchippers since he started the company in 2008 with the EVO becoming his fourth machine, and it’s the most powerful yet – transforming the way they carry out both commercial and domestic tree works.

EVO 165D delivers powerful performance

EVO 165D delivers powerful performance

“I first saw the EVO 165 at its launch at the 2019 Arb Show and the first thing that really hit me, or didn’t hit me more to the point, was the noise! We have a duty to our customers and our operators to look at things like reducing noise and this machine demonstrates real progress” explains Craig who heads up a team of six. “There are so many new developments on this machine – simple things like the foldable chute which makes storage of the unit that much easier.”

From a performance perspective, the re-designed flywheel and large infeed chute have resulted in labour and time savings when it comes to processing large volumes of woody waste. “The more powerful pull-through means we can feed in material without having to sned it down first. It then chips whatever we feed in quickly and efficiently before throwing it out again cleanly. It is without doubt the most powerful machine we’ve used in terms of torque and bite.” With its 165mm chipping capacity, the EVO isn’t the largest machine in Craig’s fleet, however it has been used on a range of projects both large and small.

Another factor that has kept Craig loyal is the superior back up support he’s received from those in the GreenMech dealer network. “I’ve worked closely alongside Julian Cullis of GreenMech since way back when, who has always kept me abreast of new and future developments. We’re also fortunate to have Chipper Hire South West not too far away who have a fantastic fleet of GreenMech machines to hire if we need them. With the EVO, the support we received from our local dealer Powercut in Carmarthen has again been first-class.”

“For us independent companies” Craig concludes, “our success depends on reliable and robust equipment that’s capable and working to its full capacity. The fact that the new EVO is a great machine is one thing, but the whole GreenMech ethos to support their users every step of the way is another to really be applauded.”

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INFINICUT Delivers At Chesterfield FC

INFINICUT Delivers At Chesterfield FC: Equipped with the TurfClean™ cassette and a duo of INFINICUT® mowers, Head Groundsman at Chesterfield Football Club Liam Reynolds is delivering a premier finish at the clubs Proact Stadium.

Such is the standard of surface preparation and aesthetic quality that Liam was recently awarded runner-up in the National League Groundsman of the Year Awards for 2019.

INFINICUT Delivers At Chesterfield FC

Together with his colleagues at Premier Pitches, Liam took over the maintenance at Chesterfield FC in 2016. In addition to the wealth of experience within the team, Liam also brought with him a fleet of machinery including two INFINICUT® mowers from MTD Specialty Turf Products. “We have two 34” mowers, one Floating Head and one Fixed Head. These are used in conjunction with one another, with the INFINICUT® FL being our mower of choice for match day preparation. They deliver such exceptional cut quality, which doesn’t go unnoticed by the spectators, players and managers alike who all comment on the stripe definition and overall appearance.”

The most recent addition to his armoury is the TurfClean™ hygiene cassette, which Liam uses in the INFINICUT® FL for post-match clean-up. Fitted with an angled comb beneath a rotary brush, the TurfClean™ effectively collects divots, debris and organic matter while standing the grass plant up to help ensure a healthy sward. “With the two adjustable rollers on the FL, we can adjust both the height and the angle of the TurfClean™ cassette to clean deep down into the turf canopy or raise it up to just remove debris off the top.”

“It’s brilliant even in the wet” Liam explains. “Once debris is collected in the comb, the rotating brush then gives no option but to throw the collected material into the box, leaving nothing behind.” In use after every match and training session, the TurfClean™ also comes into its own through the winter, when the plant is at its most vulnerable. “When growth is slow, we will use the TurfClean™ during prep instead of cutting and it puts down a fantastic stripe without risking any unnecessary stress to the plant. The sharpness of cut delivered by the INFINI’s, together with the hygiene we’re achieving with the TurfClean™, has dramatically improved the health and condition of our surface.”

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J Premier Delivers At Bournemouth

J Premier Delivers At Bournemouth: If it ain’t broken, then why fix it?! That’s certainly the motto of Ian Lucas, Head of Grounds at AFC Bournemouth, when it comes to the choice of grass seed across both the Vitality Stadium and two pitches at King’s Park training ground. When Ian joined the club 18 months ago, Johnsons J Premier Pitch mixture was the seed of choice across the two first-team facilities, and having delivered reliable coverage, colour and wear tolerance, it looks to be a decision that’s set to stay.

Supported by a grounds team of seven, Ian is now into his third season of using J Premier Pitch. “I had obviously heard of the mixture but had not used it previously so when I inherited the seeding programme of my predecessor, it was my first real experience of the Johnsons Sports Seed mixture. It hasn’t disappointed!” Ian oversows with J Premier Pitch at a rate of 45g/m2 during renovations in April and at a lower rate of 15g/m2 in October, depending on the weather conditions and how the pitch is wearing.

J Premier Delivers At Bournemouth

Through the season, they adopt a ‘pre-germinated seed’ strategy for ongoing recovery and repair of high wear areas. “It’s a well-known-tactic but not one that seems to be frequently employed in the industry” he explains. “We fill a bucket ¾ full of Premier Pitch, then top it up with water and place it in a heated container for three to four days until it pops, before applying it to areas such as goal mouths and corner spots. This method shaves up to two weeks off germination, giving us a real advantage especially during the colder months.”

“We’ve achieved good wear tolerance, disease resistance and the germination we need throughout the year. The colour is one of the main things for us, and the J Premier Pitch is unbeatable for this, backed up by the respective cultivar ratings in the STRI listings.” Ian will discuss requirements with his local DLF technical support advisor Ian Barnett, who keeps him up to date on new developments and provides guidance on seed selection. “He’ll always pop in at key times, such as renovations, and advise us on current supply to ensure we get delivery in time – vital to keeping us on track.”

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Vredo Delivers Precision In Russia

Vredo Delivers Precision In Russia: Six Vredo Compact DZ214.075 overseeders have been used in-between matches at the 2018 World Cup in Russia because of their exceptionally high rate of germination.

Precision is seen in a number of different ways at a World Cup, be it Neymar’s left foot in the iconic yellow of Brazil, Harry Kane’s eye for goal or the goal decision system that makes sure every shot over the line counts.

Vredo Delivers Precision In Russia

In-between the moments where the world is watching are the times where Vredo’s precision comes to the fore. Simply put, the machines are being used because they guarantee germination, and this was a deciding factor for Russian dealer Unisaw.

The Dutch manufactured 1.4-meter-wide machines place seed directly into the ground with 7.5cm spacings and use a unique Double V-shaped disc system, is supplied in the UK through Campey Turf Care Systems. The decision to use the machine at the biggest competition in world football was made in co-operation with Russian dealer Unisaw with the reputation of the machine playing a big part.

Having the machines at a World Cup is a source of pride for Vredo export manager, Pieter Teunis Hoogland, who worked closely with Igor Rudakov from Uniclaw to complete the deal.

“The best field managers in the world are familiar with the detailed development of the Vredo Overseeders and they don’t want to take any risks during the World Cup because of the importance of the tournament to Russia and the world,” Pieter said.

“The venues opted to go for certainty and no-nonsense machines, and Vredo is ahead of its game for this target group.”

The pitches at Samara, Saransk, Ekaterinburg, Rostov-on-Don, Volgograd and Kaliningrad are all being overseeded with the Vredo Compact DZ214.075. The surfaces at these stadiums vary between hybrid and natural grass and Vredo’s track record on both surfaces was another factor that made them the perfect option.

Overseeding hybrid fields with a Vredo seeder has proven to be a successful combination for many years. For instance, the hybrid fields of the Gelredome Arnhem, Real Madrid, Manchester United and Borussia München Gladbach etc are effectively overseeded by Vredo Overseeders with perfect play turf.

The precise nature of the machine comes from the V-shaped disks that place the seed directly in the ground at a pre-set depth, which can be adjusted between 5mm and 25mm deep. Once the seed is in direct contact with the soil the slit is closed by the compaction roller, re-establishing a level surface and providing the conditions for maximum germination.

For more information, visit: www.campeyturfcare.com

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Aqua-Zorb Delivers Results

Aqua-Zorb Delivers Results: The Course Manager at the highly exclusive Birch Grove Estate in Sussex, Pete Smith, has reported ‘phenomenal’ results from using Sherriff Amenity’s Aqua-Zorb wetting agent to bring his fairways back to life.

Situated in 1200 acres of undulating Sussex countryside, lies Birch Grove Estate. It is the former home of Sir Harold Macmillan, former Prime Minister, and visitors to the house have included Sir Winston Churchill, General Charles De Gaulle and, just a couple of weeks before his assassination, John F Kennedy.

'Phenomenal' Results From Aqua-Zorb

While these extraordinary visitors would have no doubt enjoyed the luxuries and stunning views afforded by Birch Grove, they would not have had a chance to play a round of golf on the magnificent 18-hole course in the grounds.

It wasn’t until 1986 when new owner and Asian businessman, Larry Yung, gained planning permission to build the course on the provision that it was to be purely for private use. Work eventually began on the Donald Steel designed course in 1994, and it was completed in 1996. However, for reasons unknown, Yung began to lose interest in his course and for next few years it was maintained as a 9-hole course with barely any golf played on it.

This all changed in 2011 when the current owners purchased Birch Grove and decided to return the course to its former glory. Having played a part in the original construction, Pete Smith – experienced greenkeeper and then course manager at the Cavendish Club, was brought in to reinstate the course.

Following a highly successful renovation, the 18-hole course is now 7,000 yards long, with the greens and tees constructed to USGA specification. The course remains ‘purely by invitation only’ and a maximum of 150 rounds of golf are played a year on it. It could be argued that Birch Grove Estate is the most exclusive golf course in the country.

Pete along with two other full-time greenkeepers tend to the course and no stone is left un-turned. So when his fairways started to take a turn for the worse, he was quick to find a solution.

“We have irrigation on the greens, tees and approaches but we don’t have fairway irrigation and I have never really used a wetting agent on them,” says Pete. “However, this year has been ridiculously dry and it got to the stage where in early July I was starting to look at the fairways thinking that they are actually going beyond dormant. We were starting to lose large parts of the fairway where we have not had any irrigation or any rainfall.

“So after speaking Joseph Dormer (Amenity Specialist for Sherriff Amenity), he suggested using the Aqua-Zorb Liquid as a curative effect and we thought we’d give it a go.”

Aqua-Zorb Liquid from Sherriff Amenity is a concentrated non-ionic turf wetting agent that will enable water to move faster and deeper into the soil profile. One application can last all season and it is renowned for treating the cause of Localised Dry Patch. Aqua-Zorb can also improve drainage, alleviate compaction, reduce the quantity of irrigation required, suppress the formation of dew and greatly improve the quality of the sward.

Upon applying Aqua-Zorb it is recommended that the operator should immediately irrigate with a minimum 3mm of water, or spray during rainfall – which, with no fairway irrigation, Pete relied on. However, what he thought would be a passing shower actually turned out to be far much more.

“Without fairway irrigation I was reliant on rainfall so I waited until it started raining before applying the Aqua-Zorb. It ended up absolutely chucking it down – literally the last couple of fairways I was spraying the product on were virtually flooding with surface water sitting on them. I ended up with about 16mm of rainfall which is pretty much four times the water volume that is required. At the time I was convinced that, due to the heavy rain, it wasn’t going to work. I believed it would just wash off and I thought I had just wasted all of the product.

“But coming back two days later I was amazed to see the fairways ‘greening up’ – the results were truly phenomenal. The proof, bizarrely that it worked, was that I missed a couple of areas, and you could clearly see where I had applied the wetting agent and where I hadn’t. At the time of spraying, I thought it wouldn’t matter if I left a 2ft line between my spray widths because it I felt it would leach and move with the heavy rain water that was coming down.

But it didn’t, it just stayed there and that actually gave me the evidence that the Aqua-Zorb had actually done an amazing job. I said to Joseph that it must have been like super glue!

“I will absolutely, un-questionably, use Aqua-Zorb in the spring next year as my six month fairway wetting agent. I will put it down with 100% confidence because I know how heavy that rainfall was. It was quite incredible seeing the results from this year and I know I won’t have to worry anymore about my fairways burning off or be concerned about losing them if we have another dry spell.”

As well as being a fan of Aqua-Zorb, Pete was also quick to praise the customer service he receives from Sherriff Amenity’s Joseph Dormer.

“Customer service is excellent – Joseph is relatively new in his role and having previously been a greenkeeper he is extremely knowledgeable. I know that he is always on the end of the phone for any back-up or agronomy issues.

“Not a lot of people are aware of actually how good this product is but Joe has looked into it, researched it and is confident in it. He hasn’t pushed it onto me – he simply came to me in a time of trouble and found me a solution. I took his advice and I’m pleased I did!”

For further information, please contact Sherriff Amenity on 01638 721 888 or visit www.sherriffamenity.com

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