Area golfers hit the courses
Area golfers were quick to hit the Maple and Oak Golf Courses at Perham Lakeside. The golf course opened for the season on April 18 with a steady stream of golfers throughout the day.
Perham Lakeside Clubhouse Manager Mike Kunza said it was an extremely busy opening weekend and expects that it will continue with the nice weather predicted for the coming days.
“We had great turnout and golfers were extremely happy to be able to get out on the course,” Kunza said. “Everybody was extremely respectful of the distancing guidelines that were put in for golf courses. It was a solid weekend.”
Kunza said people were just excited to get out and excited to play. He said it was a cooler weekend, but overall people were extremely happy to get out to do something.
The courses opened up with social distancing protocols in place with one golfer per cart, unless they lived in the same household. The golf course placed foam noodles in the hole, so if the ball hit the foam noodle, it was considered holed. It’s the same tactic that was put in place in area golf courses such as Wadena’s Whitetail Run and Ottertail’s Thumper Pond Golf Course.
Kunza said he felt patrons respected the rules in place, helping the opening weekend go well.
“People respected the guidelines. It was a little different getting people out, especially with four people in a group with four carts. That was a little bit different to see,” Kunza said. “People were very respectful. People were just excited to get out and play and were going to follow the rules as best as they could.”
Kunza expects to see more golfers out on the course with the nicer weather forecasted for the weekend.
“I think we will see the bulk of our business comeback this weekend,” Kunza said. “People want something to do and they are excited to be able to do something finally and the golf course can provide that for a lot of people.”
The Oak and Maple courses were the only two courses opened during the opening weekend, while the Pine course is expected to open this weekend.
Interested golfers can visit www.perhamlakesidegolf.com for more information.
It was a busy start to the 2020 golf season at Thumper Pond in Ottertail, according to Thumper Pond Golf Professional Andrew Martinson. Despite the wet and windy conditions, Martinson said golfers were taking advantage of the opportunity to get outside and play for the first time this season.
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz said golf courses in Minnesota could open up with restrictions on April 18. Thumper Pond opened for the new season on April 20. Golf Course maintenance staff were prepping the course over the weekend, making sure they were ready to go for opening day.
“It is going pretty good and the phones have been pretty busy,” Martinson said. “There is a lot of excitement about getting people back on the golf course. Our members are chomping at the bit to get back on the golf course.”
Martinson said Thumper Pond will have limited access in the pro shop. The course is allowing golf carts on the course, however, there will be one person per cart limit unless golfers are from the same household then the limit is two to a cart.
Martinson said they are disinfecting everything multiple times a day and the carts get disinfected every time they get used. They are using foam noodles that stick out an inch or two above the hole. If the ball hits the foam noodle, it is deemed holed, according to Martinson. The reasoning is it allows golfers to get their ball without having to put their hands in the hole.
Martinson said the first golfers were excited to play their first 18 holes at Thumper Pond and said they weathered the storm.
Martinson said the course came out in great shape and is in the expected spring conditions at this time.
“It’s in great shape,” Martinson said. “We are just hoping to start getting a little bit of action out here. Obviously, we want to keep people keeping a social distance around here. We are having everyone book tee times online or they can call, so we don’t get too many people gathering in the parking lot or on the first tee.”
Interested golfers can visit www.thumperpond.com/golf for more information and to sign up for a tee time.