PMMA enjoys Grasshopper longevity and versatility

Mar 13, 2009

At Presbyterian Manors of Mid-America (PMMA), longevity is celebrated, as is active living, well into the golden years. Thus, it is fitting that PMMA emphasizes the same longevity and performance in other aspects of its communities, and a perfect example of that emphasis is found in PMMA’s landscaping equipment. “We’ve had our 721D FrontMount™ Grasshopper for more than 10 years,” says Brian LaRose, director of environmental services at PMMA in Newton, Kan. “It was here when I got here, and before that, we had another Grasshopper.” Gary Layne, the director of environmental services at PMMA in Salina, Kan., echoed LaRose’s sentiments. “My predecessor switched from the old mowers he used to Grasshopper mowers,” says Layne. “I’ve been here for one year so far and that tradition will continue.” To LaRose and Layne, the reasons for continuing to use Grasshopper mowers are clear: versatility and durability. “We see weather from each end of the spectrum,” says LaRose. “From bitter cold and snow to extreme heat and drought – and everything in between – you name it, we see it here.” And that is why the Grasshoppers have to be versatile and durable. In Salina, Layne says that during the mowing season, his maintenance crew runs the community’s two FrontMount™ Grasshopper mowers over more than 20 tend-able acres for 15 hours each week. In the winter months, when snow blankets the Kansas landscape, his crew uses the dozer blade and rotary broom implements to keep the sidewalks and parking lots cleared for the residents. And in Newton, LaRose runs his Grasshopper at the same pace. “We have about 15 acres to tend, which means 15 to 20 hours every week during the mowing season.” He says that the mowers must be able to run week to week and season to season, and that the Grasshopper does just that. Still another reason LaRose says he prefers Grasshopper is reliability. “For our application, reliability is essential,” he says. “If it snows, I need to know that the mowers are going to start right up so we can clear the lots and sidewalks; they haven’t failed yet.” Both LaRose and Layne have used other mowing and stand-alone equipment in the past, but both say that the Grasshoppers’ versatility with the implements is another positive feature that sets Grasshopper apart. Both communities use rotary brooms, dozer blades and PowerVac™ collection systems, and the Newton community mulches leaves during the fall season. “Plus, you can’t argue with a mower that is easy to use,” says LaRose. “I have a 77-year-old resident here who is a volunteer. We taught him to use the Grasshopper in 15 minutes; the Grasshopper’s easy and smooth operation is ideal for our application here at PMMA.” “What can I say, they are just good pieces of equipment,” says Layne. And when it comes to longevity, as far as LaRose is concerned, Grasshopper mowers are best for PMMA. “When you have a good thing going, why change it?”

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