Above: Alejandro Guzman putts in a junior golf tournament. [Bryan Mordt] 

One of my favorite movies is “Caddyshack,” the original, not the sequel. If you put Bill Murray, Rodney Dangerfield, Ted Knight and Chevy Chase together, how can it be anything less than great fun?

Lee Shappell

Which brings us to golf. In Maricopa. In February. It’s the height of the season, so we have prepared an extensive special golf package in this month’s InMaricopa magazine for you and our numerous winter visitors.

Maricopa’s two area courses are in pristine condition. The WM Phoenix Open this month is a big deal whether you drive to Scottsdale or watch it on TV. Manufacturers roll out their 2023 club lines this month. My wife promised me a new set for my birthday a while back to replace my 1986 sticks, but I’d deliberately held off until now so I could grab some 2022s cheap. Not so fast. I went in last weekend, giddy, and paid full fare for a set of 2023 Ping G430s. Now all I have to do is pay somebody to hit them for me.

You need not know a niblick from a mashie to appreciate what February means to the industry in Maricopa and to a game that started out primarily for the rich — and is now played by millions of poor players. I admit to being among the latter. People ask me what my handicap is and I tell them, “My swing.” But I dutifully keep my head down while striking the ball, not because I think it helps my game but because I don’t want to look up and see my playing partners laughing.

Our Justin Griffin put together our amazing golf package. And what about that cover photo? Our Bryan Mordt was flat on the ground when he photographed that artsy bunker shot featuring The Duke’s general manager Bryon Gribbons.

Elsewhere in the magazine, you’ll find what could become the biggest story in this edition. Brian Petersheim Jr. tells us about Mark McCoin, who lives in Senita, and how he and his late father patented a rotary engine that runs on hydrogen and a transmission to pair with it. McCoin wants to mass-produce them here. That’s only the beginning. He recently initiated contact with Kathryn DeLorean of DeLorean Next Generation Motors about teaming on his engine and transmission in her cars — and building them here. They’re now in discussions. Stay tuned.

And — hoo, boy — did the Pinal Regional Transportation Authority ever spend a bucket of money trying to win the Proposition 469 election in November to get us a wider State Route 347. It lost. We got our hands on the campaign finance reports. Did the authority get its money’s worth? We present, you decide.

We hope you enjoy our February edition of InMaricopa magazine. Thank you for being a reader!

Meanwhile, I’m headed for the first tee. If you want to come along, I’ll show you that it is possible to make a snowman in Maricopa.

Lee Shappell is Editorial Director of InMaricopa.