Fisher's three State Am titles came in 2005, '08 and '09. As a past champion, he doesn't have to qualify to get into this year's field.
"We're happy to get him back,'' Tackett said. "We hope his golf speaks for itself. It makes your State Amateur the best when you have the best players playing.''
Rain, rain go away
This summer's series of drenching rains has left Kanawha Valley golf courses doused and confused. They've had to battle to keep their layouts playable.
"It's been very bad for us,'' said Jimmy Harrison, the pro at Sleepy Hollow Golf Club in Hurricane. "A little bit of rain is good, obviously, but what's gone on the last three weeks . . . we've only been able to mow back our greens one time in three weeks, which is a really bad thing for us, having Bermuda fairways like we do.
"Heat and water are good for greens, but in the last month, it's been really bad. I'll bet we've had 15 inches of rain in the last month. It makes it tough for a golf course superintendent, that's for sure. It's not been a good thing for us.''
The National Weather Service in Charleston said a total of 7.12 inches of rain fell at Yeager Airport in June, followed by 2.92 inches so far in the first 10 days of July. That total of 10.04 inches exceeds the average by about 4.3 inches, and there have been reports of 12-plus inches in some localities.
"This much rain doesn't help anything,'' said Barry Evans, golf pro at Berry Hills Country Club in Charleston. "It's not getting a tenth of an inch. We're getting three-quarters of an inch or an inch and the ground gets saturated. Everybody thinks water is good, but in this amount, it's not.
"We have XGD drains for 12 of our greens, but the ones that don't we can have problems in. You have to be careful about algae when you get this amount of rain. We had to close one day [this summer] because it was really too wet, and you could damage the greens.''
Standing water has been a problem at Big Bend Golf Course in Tornado.
"On hole No. 4, we've had a lake here for about the past week over to the side of the rough,'' said Josh Wolfe, who works in the golf shop.
"It's well over the amount of rain we usually get, and it's very tough to get the course ready. You're not able to mow the rough and fairways and greens, and it leaves them long and slow. We've been cart path only for a week now.''
The forecast, however, finally calls for a break in the wet weather starting this weekend - and not a moment too soon for area courses.
"We're definitely looking forward to a dryout,'' Harrison said. "We have our member-guest [tournament] next weekend.''
"Play goes down when it's raining,'' Evans said, "and that's a concern, too, because revenue goes down and everything else. But for the most part, it hasn't affected us too much. We're in about as good a shape as you could be.''
Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or rickr...@wvgazette.com.