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State of the Game? Salt Lake City closes 3 more courses.


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Hope it's doing better in your areas.   In my state it's dying.   3 City owned courses are going under, a fourth was slated for closure, but the City found out that if they used the land for anything other than golf, the title would revert back to the family that gifted the land to them.   So that one is safe.

 

No one is surprised.   One of the 3, Wingpointe, is a course I played last year on a Thursday afternoon for free because the Pro simply had errands and locked the shop while he was out.   Something that the lunch counter girl said he did quite a bit.  Most of the water hazards were drained, it was clear they'd given up.

bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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I think from what I have read on here and other blogs it depends on what part of our country you are in. Here I live in a tourist retirement area and it is thriving.  .I just found out yesterday that the Chinese group that bought my home course has bought several more making their golf group own 27 courses total. I think as far as cities and counties owning and managing courses that is going to be a thing in the past. I know the City of Myrtle Beach has operated the course on the former air base for over 20 years and has lost money and actually it is a good layout but the course and management simply sucked. They have caught so much flack the last few years over this that earlier this year they leased the course to the management group that formerly owned TPC Myrtle Beach. Of course this area is highly competitive for play from both tourist and local residents. Of course we had quite a few closures in the real estate boom of the early Millenium days but as far as course closures we have stabilized. IMHO in like your case cities and counties do not have any business trying to manage golf courses. Most governments have enough trouble trying to manage cities and counties much less a golf faculity.

Driver Homna  G1- X Stock Homna Regular shaft

4 wood Adams Tight Lies 

5 wood Adams Tight Lies 

24* Hybrid Adams A 10-OS Pro Launch Red R

Irons 5 thru PW 1980 Macgregor VIP Hogan Apex #2 shafts

SW- Wilson Staff JP II 56* shaft unknown

Putter 1997 Santa Fe rusty as heck

 

 

 

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Mark for starters I'm happy to see a post from you. I'm not hitting like but if there were a true button I would hit it and. I certainly appreciate your post.

 

With all due respect to Big Stu his situation is the unique one. Heck I live in a similar type place although mine is more blended. Courses that are associated with resorts do fine in our area. We had a two or three year down turn in tourism that has rebounded nicely at this point. Courses associated with Newer Real Estate developement and municipal courses have struggled and closed sometimes even regardless of the amount of play. One of the St Pete courses closed four years ago because the city felt the land was more valuable for sale to a developer or the airport it abuts. The property sits vacant. One of the two par 3's is closing at the end of this month. This will mean one municipal golf complex with an 18 and a 9 hole par 3 course for a city of 300K people.

 

I can't begin to count the number of courses within an hours drive of my house that have closed in the past 9 years and mind you I'm fifteen minutes from the Gulf of Mexico so that represents only a half circle.

 

Having written that we seem to have reached the new norm in our area. For the first time in several years I had trouble finding tee times this winter and I did have to pay a bit more for golf, it's always easy and cheaper in the summer here.

 

Perhaps we've reached the bottom of the Tiger boom drop out, economic down turn slam and now it's time for courses and the people who make the rules to figure out how to make it a great entertainment value again.

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Ping G410 - set at 12 degrees, fade setting - Fujikura Motore X R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood

G30 6-PW -  Aerotech FT 500 shafts

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Here in my area of the NW it is hit and miss. In Spokane WA they have a bunch of city and county courses, some have been around for over 50 years; they are all nice and get lots of play. Prices are reasonable; $30 and you call one phone number to make a tee time for any course.

 

Locally, I have 4 courses that I would call munis. However, the cities do not run them. They are contracted to either a person, maybe a pro, but mostly to a management group that has a pro. The city gets a percentage. They are all doing well because there is only 7 courses open to the public for a population center of about 200K people; many retirees.

We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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It all depends who you are in my area. Some have closed, some are thriving and some are squeeking by. Brookwood cc was a cheap public country club that closed. It was in horrible shape. Colonial CC was a nice mid level 2 course country club that had to shut down as well. One course was bought and is run as it's own entity now. The 3 high high level club around me are doing fine as is the top tier muni. The guy who ownes the 3 courses I'm a member of is doing great. I actually think that his cheap a$$ doesn't put near the money back into the courses as he could yet they are still decent mid level country club courses. 2 championship style courses on opposite sides of town and one executive course as well. One other country club, Castlewoods is somewhat struggling and there is rumor that the guy that ownes it our courses will buy it although that's always the rumor here if a private course is struggling. There are some smaller courses in the area that I don't frequent as much so I can't comment on how they are doing but my guess would be mediocre.

Driver- Tmag 2017 M2 tour issue 8.5* actual loft 7.8* w/ Diamana Ahina 80X 44"
Fairway Metal- Tour Edge Exotics XCG7 Beta 3W 13* w/ Matrix 7m4 X 42.5"

Utility- Mizuno MPH5 1 iron w/ Aldila RIP 85X (depending on course/ conditions)

Irons- Mizuno MP-18 FLI HI 3i and 4i w/ KBS C-taper lite X
          Mizuno MP59 5i and 6I w/ PX 6.5

          Mizuno MP69 7i-PW w/ PX 6.5

Wedges- Scratch 8620 Driver/Slider set.  50*, 56* bent to 55* w/ rifle spinner shafts

                and Titleist Vokey 60* M grind

Putter- Never Compromise Dinero Mogul
Ball- Bridgestone Tour B XS

Bag- Ogio Aquatech Cart Bag

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Now to really get into detail we have had a similar situation to what Rev described. We had quite a few golf course closings about 8 or 10 years ago. 4 that I know of the developers went broke in the housing slump and the land has just sat and has grown up. A couple of examples were Robber's Roost in NMB which I had some history at and loved. It has been closed and sat for the last 10 years now and I think finally last year they may have started developing a shopping center. Bay Tree also in NMB closed about 10 years ago and that land is still sitting and grown up. Deer track in Surfside closed both of their courses about 8 years ago now and same story the developer went broke and is being sued by the property owners and that is still undeveloped and grown up. Actually the recession may have saved a lot of the courses here because of low tourism the courses found out they could survive with the right management and a change of attitude because there are a lot of golfing retirees that can and do support the courses. But the golfing retirement thing has almost gotten as competitive as the tourism industry with a lot of other locations besides The Grand Strand area and Florida running what I call invitation ads in print and video media inviting people to retire here. 3 really come to mind here The Alabama Area with the RTJ golf trail, The  Mississippi / Alabama Gulf Coast area and of course the Scottsdale Arizona area. I have also seen lately a lot of promotion of the Branson Missouri and Hot Springs Arkansas areas respectively

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Driver Homna  G1- X Stock Homna Regular shaft

4 wood Adams Tight Lies 

5 wood Adams Tight Lies 

24* Hybrid Adams A 10-OS Pro Launch Red R

Irons 5 thru PW 1980 Macgregor VIP Hogan Apex #2 shafts

SW- Wilson Staff JP II 56* shaft unknown

Putter 1997 Santa Fe rusty as heck

 

 

 

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Public/daily fee courses in Minnesota for the most part seem to be doing okay - at least they're busy and remain in decent enough shape.  Did hear of one course that may close down after this season, but even Stevie Wonder could've seen that one coming - quirky, strange layout and badly maintained.  If it does close down, it won't be missed.  Other courses seem to be doing well.

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Driver:  Sub 70 639D - 9.5; :cleveland-small: Launcher HB Turbo; :mizuno-small: ST 190 
FW Wood: :tour-edge: Tour Edge EXS 220 - 15*; :mizuno-small: ST 180 14*
Hybrids:  PXG 0311 22
Utility Irons: :wilson_staff_small: Staff Model Utilities 18, 21, 24*;  Lynx VT Stinger - 16*
Irons::wilson_staff_small: D7 Forged; :benhogan-small:PTx Pro, :macgregor-small: VIP 1025 V-Foil MB/CB; :wilson_staff_small: Progressives (circa 1993)

Wedges:  :cleveland-small: CBX -2, :benhogan-small:Riviera 52-56-60; :wilson_staff_small: Staff Model
Putter:   :edel-golf-1:  Willamette,  :bettinardi-small: BB8,  :benhogan-small:Baby Ben

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There are some rumors this year about a couple of local 9 hole muni courses that are struggling, and one private course that's lost some membership, but overall the "Malaska Life" group has a number of courses it's managing and they're all doing quite well.  Golf & Fitness memberships with very reasonable membership fees and the courses are very busy.

What's In The Bag

Driver :titelist-small:

Titleist 913 D2 10.5* (set to 9.75* / Neutral) 46" Paderson KINETIXX Kevlar Green - R

Fairway Wood

Tom Wishon 949 MC 16.5* Fujikura Speeder 569-A

Hybrid  :cleveland-small: Hibore 22* Aldila VS Proto Blue

Irons  :ping-small: G series 5-P

Wedges :ping-small:Glide 54* SS / 60* TS - SCOR 53*

Putter     :nike-small: Nike Method 001 / P2 Reflex grip 35"

Ball

Master Grip Tour C4

Bag

Datrek DG Lite  

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The courses down here in South Texas are doing fine....

Driver:   :taylormade-small: M3 Tensei CK Pro Blue
3-Metal:: :callaway-small: GBB EPIC, FujiKura Pro Green

5-Metal:  :cobra-small: F-7, FujiKura Pro

Irons:   :mizuno-small: MP-18 SC, KBS Tour 120

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:   RTX-3  52 - 56 - 60
Putter:  EVN-Roll ER-5

Ball :  :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

Range Finder:  Busnnell Tour-X,  Garmin S20 

 

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In NJ judging by the promotions and tournament turnout... they are hurting. The county owns 6 courses and all are now offering multiple level of discounts and deals. The tournaments used to have 20 people a flight, but the last time I played they only had 12 or so. It's sad, but at the same time, courses will have to start coming down in price or offering more deals that persuade the weekly golfer to maybe go twice a week.

 Driver:   :callaway-small:  Epic Flash 12 Degree

Wood: :callaway-small:  GBB 3 Wood
Hybrid: :callaway-small: Razr 4 hybriid stiff stock shaft.
Irons: :callaway-small: X2 Hot 4 iron (pro version) 5 iron - Gap Wedge (non pro version).  KBS 120g Shaft stiff cut 1/2  inch bent 1°upright
Wedges: :vokey-small: 52° 56° and 60°.
All grips are Golf pride grips midsized
Putter (lefty):  Odyssey Metal-X #8 34", stock shaft bent 2° Superstroke grip
Golf Balls:   :titelist-small: 2018-9 Pro-V1x and Prov1s
Shoes:  :footjoy-small:  Dryjoy tours

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In NJ judging by the promotions and tournament turnout... they are hurting. The county owns 6 courses and all are now offering multiple level of discounts and deals. The tournaments used to have 20 people a flight, but the last time I played they only had 12 or so. It's sad, but at the same time, courses will have to start coming down in price or offering more deals that persuade the weekly golfer to maybe go twice a week.

Just looked it up. New this year is a few courses have 9 hole early morning. Step in the right direction, but still needs more courses and times IMO.

 Driver:   :callaway-small:  Epic Flash 12 Degree

Wood: :callaway-small:  GBB 3 Wood
Hybrid: :callaway-small: Razr 4 hybriid stiff stock shaft.
Irons: :callaway-small: X2 Hot 4 iron (pro version) 5 iron - Gap Wedge (non pro version).  KBS 120g Shaft stiff cut 1/2  inch bent 1°upright
Wedges: :vokey-small: 52° 56° and 60°.
All grips are Golf pride grips midsized
Putter (lefty):  Odyssey Metal-X #8 34", stock shaft bent 2° Superstroke grip
Golf Balls:   :titelist-small: 2018-9 Pro-V1x and Prov1s
Shoes:  :footjoy-small:  Dryjoy tours

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Personally, I think someone could build 9-hole courses in certain locations and do quite well.  Some locations are over developed, and some are golf course starved.  A good 9-hole course has to be easily playable in 2 hours, challenging but fun for all, and in good shape with reasonable alternative tee boxes for the 18-hole option.  The problem is people build an 18-hole course and try to market it as a "destination course".  I have seen those types go under after just a few years.  

 

I thought MGS was designing a course.  How's that going?

We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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Not too many worries it seems for the Sonoma County public courses. Weekdays can be slow sometimes, but weekends remain busy. The CC courses seem to be having bigger issues- they've dropped their initiation fees and lowered their monthly rates in many cases.

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PING i20 20*, TFC707H (S)
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PING i20 5-PW, TT DG S300, 1.5* flat (purple dot)
SCOR 50*,54*,58*, Genius 12 KBS Tour (S), 1.5* flat, -1/4"
STX xForm 3, 35"
 

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Not too many worries it seems for the Sonoma County public courses. Weekdays can be slow sometimes, but weekends remain busy. The CC courses seem to be having bigger issues- they've dropped their initiation fees and lowered their monthly rates in many cases.

 

And like one of the clubs here, they will eventually become semi-private where the public can play golf anytime but they don't have access to the clubhouse, pool, tennis, etc.  

We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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And like one of the clubs here, they will eventually become semi-private where the public can play golf anytime but they don't have access to the clubhouse, pool, tennis, etc.

 

Yep we have a lot of this too or we have no initiation fee incentives. There's an issue, either too many courses were built during the boom or the game is struggling. Probably something in between.

Ping G410 - set at 12 degrees, fade setting - Fujikura Motore X R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood

G30 6-PW -  Aerotech FT 500 shafts

SCOR 48,52,56,60

EVNRoll ER 5

Titleist Pro VIx optic yellow with revkev stamped on them

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I have to say, having played 3 of the 4 private courses close by there is only one that I would say is somewhat superior to some of the public courses. The others are just exclusive. So what- I like my golf on a nice, challenging course. You can have your exclusive, and I'll take Bodega Harbour or Windsor GC, or even Northwood GC any day.

PING i20 8.5*, TFC707D (S)
Callaway RAZR Fit 15*, neutral setting, stock shaft (S)
PING i20 20*, TFC707H (S)
Adams Pro a12 23*, Matrix Ozik Altus (S)
PING i20 5-PW, TT DG S300, 1.5* flat (purple dot)
SCOR 50*,54*,58*, Genius 12 KBS Tour (S), 1.5* flat, -1/4"
STX xForm 3, 35"
 

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I have to say, having played 3 of the 4 private courses close by there is only one that I would say is somewhat superior to some of the public courses. The others are just exclusive. So what- I like my golf on a nice, challenging course. You can have your exclusive, and I'll take Bodega Harbour or Windsor GC, or even Northwood GC any day.

 

Been wanting to try the golf course at Bodega Bay for a long time.  I think I will be traveling to SoCal in July; if I drive may have to stop there.  Home of Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds"!

We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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Been wanting to try the golf course at Bodega Bay for a long time.  I think I will be traveling to SoCal in July; if I drive may have to stop there.  Home of Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds"!

Yep- and worth the trip for the golf, scenery, crab, etc.

PING i20 8.5*, TFC707D (S)
Callaway RAZR Fit 15*, neutral setting, stock shaft (S)
PING i20 20*, TFC707H (S)
Adams Pro a12 23*, Matrix Ozik Altus (S)
PING i20 5-PW, TT DG S300, 1.5* flat (purple dot)
SCOR 50*,54*,58*, Genius 12 KBS Tour (S), 1.5* flat, -1/4"
STX xForm 3, 35"
 

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