PUBLIC COURSE UPGRADE – ST. MARK GOLF CLUB

PUBLIC COURSE UPGRADE – ST. MARK GOLF CLUB


St. Mark was probably one of the worst golf
courses in North County, for sure. Our ownership at the time fell on some hardship. We had a lot of poor mistakes. We definitely tried to cling to membership. If you took all the golf courses 20 years
ago, compared to what they are today, we had probably 90% of the golf courses private. And now, today, it’s probably 90% public. And the reason being is — there isn’t that
membership base as there was, you know, 25, 30 years ago. And you need to, you know, change, morph to
the times. Otherwise, you’re gonna be left behind. And we kind of got in that weird in-between
area. So, the first thing is getting an influx of
cash to do some capital improvements here on the golf course and on the facility. That was a huge improvement and a huge stride
forward.>>We did all new tee boxes on both golf courses,
and, slowly, just getting turf health and greens health back into shape where we want
it to be. Last year, we did all new irrigation controllers
and sprinkler heads around the greens. In our advancing-up program, you see new sprinklers. And then we just got some new equipment to
replace an aging fleet and then some stuff we never had before that we feel is gonna
help us, you know, to the next level.>>Our golf course was built in the early
’60s, so you can see that it is not the newest layout. There’s not as much elevation changes as maybe
some of the newer golf courses. But, I mean, Harry Rainville designed it. It is great, challenging golf courses. There’s all push-up greens. We redesigned a few holes to give it a new
look and feel. We’ve also changed the aspect of when somebody
comes to the golf course, you’re not selling them a round of golf. You’re selling them an experience. They’re gonna come here an hour before their
tee time, hit some balls, maybe eat something. They’re going to hang out when they’re done
playing golf. So we need to make it a fun, more enjoyable
experience from top to bottom, so once they get in the parking lot and they leave the
course. Their kids are gonna spend 6, 7, 8 hours of
their day here. So we’ve incorporated music on the driving
range. We’ve got music playing all over through the
clubhouse. We’ve kind of relaxed our dress code and,
you know, opened it up to more of the younger crowd, as well. In the past five years, we’ve started to do
some golf tournaments and we found out adding the microbrewers and the beers are key. People want it. It’s a huge hit right now. I mean, the 78 freeway is right around the
corner. It’s called the “Hop Highway.” There’s a reason for it. There’s a million microbrewers. And that’s the hot thing right now, and you
need to cling to it. And that’s the way we’re going. At the Tap In Tavern, Executive Golf Course
— it’s a par 58. You walk into the clubhouse. The guy can serve you a beer. He can check you in. We have 65 beers that are available. We have a full-service simulator in there
to hit some balls before you go out and play some golf. Music’s playing. You’re having a great old time. There’s 6, 7 big-screen TVs in there. And it’s a whole different vibe. It’s more like a Dave & Buster’s golf course
kind of feel. We do this great thing on Saturdays, starting
at 3:00. It’s called the Happy Hitting Clinic. And for 25 bucks, you get to hit as many range
balls as you like. You get an appetizer. You get an alcoholic beverage or a non-alcoholic
beverage of your choice. You get a full-service instructor out there
giving you lessons, and as well as, after you’re done hitting some range balls, getting
a few tips, and you feel good about yourself, we’ll stick you in a golf cart and you go
play some golf. And I think a lot of golf courses talk about
helping the game, and they really don’t have a plan or really bend over backwards to do
it. We want to do it. We want to give you the best deal we can for
that 25 bucks. We’re doing it on a Saturday afternoon. And we want to get new golfers to play the
game. And we want to make it a lot more — How can
I say? It’s not as intimidating as going to the driving
range, and everybody’s super-quiet. Like we said, we got music playing. We got a bar set up on the driving range. People are having a good time, and it’s more
of a fun thing, like going bowling, instead of, you know, you feel like everybody’s watching
you on the driving range, as well, and making fun of you. You want — I mean, we’re all bad golfers
compared to everybody on the PGA Tour, so everyone just needs to have fun and relax. You can find out more at stmarkgolf.com. S-T-M-A-R-K-G-O-L-F.com. And that’s where you will find a whole bunch
of information about the club and what we do have to offer here.

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