Welcome to 2024.  I hope that you had a wonderful holiday season and had some quality time with loved ones.  The weather has certainly been bearable and it looks like we may get a little snow in the near future.  I am sure the ski areas could use it.  It was the rainiest year in memory and I was thinking the other day, what a great year to own a bowling alley.

Our newest structure at LKCC is all framed up and water tight for the winter.  We now have a new 34’ x 100’ maintenance building with radiant heat, 3 garage doors and a 16’ x 16’ addition on the end for 3 bathrooms and a utility room.  The building will have an office for Mike and a structural location for a 12 foot heavy duty lift and will be a huge upgrade for our crew. 

I don’t have the final numbers for 2023 but I am very confident that LKCC had a 100th birthday year that will always be remembered.  I was visiting with some very special friends last night that live in Lovell but are not golfers.  They both commented on how busy the course seemed all summer.  I agreed and mentioned the fact that it rained almost every day in May and June.  They knew our General Manager and had several very positive interactions with her.  Of course I took all the credit and mentioned I have taught her everything she knows.  They both laughed and knew that was not true.  As I processed our conversation, I began to wonder if maybe she has the ability to get customers to come and just leave money for no apparent reason.  Like a magical spell or something…  But then it came to me.  Remember the chorus of the theme song in the TV show “Cheers”.  “Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name and they’re always glad you came.”  There is the answer.  Quality people equals successful business.

I was at the bank several years ago and ran into a legend in the local business world.  He and his 2 sons run a very successful construction company.  This man was about my father’s age and to say I respected what he had done would be a gross understatement.  I know both his sons and have had many conversations with them.  I tightened my cap and approached him.  I started with “Hi I’m Azel’s son Brad.” We talked for 10 minutes as I tried to absorb every ounce of knowledge I could.  As we parted ways to get into the teller line, He asked me, “How is your business going Brad?”  I told him it was going well but would never be at the scale of what he has to deal with every day.  Without hesitation he looked back at me and replied, “It’s all the same equation.”  I will never forget those words.  They have echoed in my mind for years.  Do quality work, the best you can do in everything you do and you will find success.

My mother passed away on Dec. 18th at her home in Fryeburg.  It was not unexpected and it was the most peaceful setting anyone could ask for.  She was so grateful to be there but also grateful to be able to go be with my father again.  When your 86 and have a great quality of life, what else can anyone ask for?  One night we were chatting in front of the pellet stove and out of the blue she asks me, “Did my parents take you aside when you were younger and tell you to take care of me when I got old?”  I was speechless so she repeated the question.  I grabbed her hand, gave her a kiss on the cheek and whispered in her ear, “No mom, you taught me that.” 

We will celebrate her life today with memories, reuniting with friends and family, looking at many pictures and of course (in the Littlefield tradition) having way more food than an army could eat.  I am so grateful for the outpouring of condolences and especially seeing friends I have not seen for years.  I really feel like the luckiest guy in the world.

Yours in golf,