Lake golf

The day to day usage of these properties, whether it be operating a boat on the lake, renting a dock, or playing a game of golf are subject to fees paid by the users. With respect to the golf fees, these contract or daily fees pay for the daily preparation of the course for play. The cart fees pay for the lease of carts and cart related costs which include a payroll expense for attendants. Other expenses of golf relate to the operation of the Pro Shop and retail shop.
Recently a Board of Directors work session on golf was conducted. The meeting missed its mark due to ridiculous rumors circulated that the course might be closed. What needed to be conveyed at the meeting was that contracting Billy Casper has succeeded in bringing up the quality of the play areas of the golf course to tournament grade over the past 18 months. The cost for preparing the course daily for the use of the golfers is approximately $ 1,500 per day. However, the fees collected for play cover little more than 50% of this cost. The services provided by the Pro Shop come at an addition cost of $100,000 per year covering marketing, management, shop attendants, printed materials and utilities.
In past years the operating losses for golf have been funded by other sources of revenues such as boat registration fees, profits from marina fuel and dock operations, cable commissions and surplus dues. Shouldn’t these funds be available to maintain and improve their related areas not pay for shortfalls in golf?
The subject of the meeting should have been how to rectify this problem.
Comments were made concerning hiring a marketing consultant who would help attract a greater number of players from outside of the community. The additional income could help cover the shortfall.
This is like holding a tiger by the tail. Create more expense (marketing, printing, telephone and discounts to the public) in the hope you attract sufficient new revenue to cover the original shortfall plus the additional costs of marketing.
Can we expect to attract enough players from outside to pay for the costs? Will the increase in numbers require additional parking, a bigger and better pro shop, a better selection of tee times and a restaurant? Will members have to fight for tee times? Should the association be attempting to operate a public course?
Can member golfers afford the quality experience Billy Casper has made possible without having to compromise? Can operating expenses be reduced by using volunteers to attend to the carts and pro shop? Remember the youngsters who would caddy for tips? Is a merchandise shop necessary when an on-line catalog for golf would reduce overheads? It does at the marina. Can tee reservations and contracts/fees be handled on-line? If we increase daily fees, shouldn’t we see more interest in contracts?
The directors should encourage greater support from the member golfers by asking that they tailor the services they want to a cost that they are prepared to pay for?
This are the topics which should be discussed.

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