Jump to content
pulledabill

Driving range wants and needs

Recommended Posts

3 hours ago, Golfspy_CG2 said:

I cant believe nobody jas mentioned balls or mats.  This is a driving range.  They are as essential to his siccess as beds and a shower are to a hotel. 

Dont skimp on balls   Get a good quality range ball—Stixon makes a good one—and please for the love of all things good---dont get the restricted flight balls.  Make sure he rotates them in on a regular basis.  Keep them clean and I'm good repair.  

Don't skimp on mats.  Good ones are expensive but if you get cheap ones that wear down in 5 months people won't come.  

Covered hitting area and heat are essential if you're in a seasonal climate.  

Ideally it would be nice to have a hitting studio.  That has permanent walls and interior and then an open garage door type access to hit onto the range.   And the door can close down in extreme cold and be an indoor instruction area.  

Hire a PGA pro if he is serious about lessons/fittings and club sales.   Most OEM have a very reasonable fitting cart program. And as Har mentioned, lots of demo days! 

Also right after balls and mats, to me is the actual range area.  As Cnosil said.  Lots of short gsme targets.  Well defined flags and landing areas for the longer shots.  Hopefully a nice looking grass area that you can clearly see your shots land. 

A lot have mentioned a practice bunker.  Nice thought.  We have one for short and long shots. And is litteraly never used.  Remember we are the 1% here.  Most average Joe consumers aren't going to come in and spend $10 or $15 on a bucket of balls and go "waste" them in bunker shots.   They want to bang the driver 50 times.  Ha    it's a nice thought.  But trust me it will get next to no use.  

Rather she that money spent on balls and the labor time spent on keeping the range grass looking nice. 

All the ideas about reduced or free things for kids to get them involved with Dad or the family are great and we do pretty well with that.  Consider a kids clinic in the summer. 

Those are the main things right off the top of my head. 

Very nice!  The range at my course uses mats during the winter and removes them in the spring.  However, there is enough room between the mats for people to tee up a driver (if they can get a tee in the frozen ground).  There are supposed to be no iron shots off the grassy area between mats; some do it of course, but generally most people respect it.  There's about 20 yards front to back on the teeing ground, and we do have yardages indicated to the various colored flags.  My biggest complaint is that the course architect continued his theme of mounds on the course into the driving range which makes no sense.  The colored flags are in top of the mounds, but you can't see balls landing over the first mound until it gets to the second mound.  Stupid!

Our range does have a teeing area at the far end of the range which is used for lessons.  It's inconvenient to give group lessons on the main teeing area when people are warming up to play.  I suppose that's not really an issue if it's just a driving range, but a separate area is really nice for lessons. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How is he trying to position it?  Upscale, or down home?  That should factor into the investments he wants to make.  Does he think he can turn it into a hangout and do some food and beverage?  Or just keep it simple and stick to selling range balls and just have vending machines?

 

The most important thing a range can have in my book is flat ground to hit off of.  Seems simple, but the grass tees at the biggest range near me slope horribly from back to front.  I go there when I want to hit off downhill lies.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We used to have a range that was open late with lights. They had a nice snack bar and sold beer/wine.

Also, club repair, regripping, outdoor fitting
..

Sent from my SM-G935V using MyGolfSpy mobile app

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm lucky in the target department. When the weather cooperates the range I use in Midland Michigan has probably 20+ 4x8 plywood "targets" which are sponsored by various business's from town. He has them at various ranges, just pull out a range finder and pick one and let loose. It makes an impressive"thump" when you hit one and everyone looks to see who did it.

Chris

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
An acquaintance of mine bought the local driving range that Ive spents quite a bit if time at the last couple years. He has what I feel is reasonable idea and plans to make the place more appealing to all levels of play. 
Since Ive been out of the game for surgery, Ive spent some tine in their passing time while recovering. We do a litttle brainstorming from the owners side and the consumers side.
So I thought I would run it through here. What do you want, need, or woukd like to see in a driving range? Merchandise? Services? 
Do you buy anything from your driving range or is it just a place to grind for an hour and leave me alone. 


Do I buy anything? Not normally but having access to tees and gloves would be awesome. There is a driving range in San Antonio that has a full service maintenance shop. It’s been many years since I lived there but if memory serves me well it was a great side hustle received very well by the patrons. The owner of the range rented out the space and received a percentage of the income. He did the same with a couple teaching pros. They ran their business kind of like a Barbershop. It was a great business model for the owner. Lots of services, very little financial risk.

- Good quality mats are a must

- well maintained putting area

- distance markers and targets

- ball dispensing vending machines

- lights for night practice

- Grill and snack bar

- Simulator Bay for rent and teaching.

- Special Days and times for specific demographics (Thursday night ladies night and run beer specials for their wannabe coaches male friends and husbands).

- Saturday morning first tee for kids. Run discounts and grill dogs for lunch.

- design a cool/fun T shirt for sale in the pro shop at a reasonable price

- coordinate demo days a plenty. Everyone loves a demo day.

I’m sorry I probably could go on for hours




Sent from my iPad using MyGolfSpy
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/11/2019 at 8:49 PM, romeopapazulu said:


I was wondering about the maintenance myself. If someone is hacking balls out if there all day long, how often do you need to replace sand?
Then again, if no one ever uses it, maybe maintenance isn’t too bad. But in that case, you are right it is better to put a few more bays in.


Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

Yes, but the sand area doesn’t have to be a full bunker. You need a 5’ x 5’ square about the same size as a mat, and doesn’t have to be deep, a couple inches of sand, it will be relatively low maintenance, and it will be enough to be able to take full swings out of. Made specifically to hit longer irons out of, this is not a green side wedge bunker, and should not be used as such. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I’m not sure how to do it easily but something I’ve always wanted was a small “hilll (mound would be more like it) where I could practice with the ball above or below my feet or upslope/downslope shots.


Sent from my iPad using MyGolfSpy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I’m not sure how to do it easily but something I’ve always wanted was a small “hilll (mound would be more like it) where I could practice with the ball above or below my feet or upslope/downslope shots.


Sent from my iPad using MyGolfSpy
Can't imagine what this baby costs but it is definitely going to solve that issue https://www.trueliegolf.com/

Sent from my Pixel 3 using MyGolfSpy mobile app

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BYOB. Targets galore. Heated section. Sign me up everyone goes to top golf I go there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Short game area. That would be my absolute first choice.

Aside from that, a well-maintained grass hitting area and/or good quality mats. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I use a range, I want to know a few things: grass or mats? If mats, are they the cheap kind that are wore down already or the newest tech that replicates hitting off grass? If they're the latter I'll visit that place often. Cheap mats are useless to me and don't lead to repeat business.

Grass is great but I can deal with mats if weather doesn't permit. 

A short game area is always nice, but better would be a nice well kept putting green. I've visited a few ranges that had a putting green that was cheap plastic or was more hairy than a yeti.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...