The spring weather is finally warming up and with that golfers can finally enjoy some of the courses in the Westman area.
While some courses, like Glen Lea and Northern Pines, have just opened up, the Killarney Lakeside Golf Club has been open since April 20 and has had people from Saskatchewan, Winnipeg and northern Manitoba come to play a few rounds. The club was lucky enough to avoid the late-season snow and the recent spat of rain and director of golf Jesse Moussa is happy to get the season into full swing.
"The golf course is in wonderful shape. The greens have weathered well and we’re looking forward to a good season," he said. "… Just getting open early has been a blessing for us. We started so late last year and it just helps out with membership, sales in the pro shop and everything all around."
Killarney’s course has a slightly different look to it this year as well.
Moussa has the front nine in a trial phase to give it a more natural look. He’s not using chemicals and fertilizers on areas rarely in play to create more of a grasslands look for golfers, while making sure it’s not distracting.
"We’ll grow it up to a four-inch height and then try the areas to make sure they aren’t affecting play," Moussa said. "We’ll take it from there and if we think it’s too much on the golfers, we’ll take it down. If we feel it’s not in play and we like the way it looks, we’ll let it go."
Meanwhile, Northern Pines opened on Tuesday and was followed by Glen Lea on Wednesday.
Glen Lea manager Jason Earl said he had more than 60 people on his course yesterday, with many looking forward to playing again on the weekend. He feels his course is in pretty good shape, although there are a few wet spots that are roped off. The course will have a new cart shed and workshop this year, but most golfers won’t notice any significant changes.
Earl is just excited to have the course open again.
"It’s great to be open," he said. "Really been itching to get the doors open for a month now, almost. Finally get those golfers out. It’s a great time of year."
Deer Ridge owner Chris Kading is waiting for a few wet patches on his course to dry up before opening. He said it’s day-to-day with the hopes of opening by no later than Saturday. Once the course does open, he thinks it will be in outstanding shape.
"The greens looked absolutely fantastic," he said. "Almost no snow mould anywhere, I can’t find a patch anywhere on the greens and they look overall probably better than they ever have collectively. This is probably the best year ever for the start. I’m pretty excited now."
The Wheat City course is still waiting for the Assiniboine River to crest before it opens, targetting the middle of May.
CHIP SHOTS: The inaugural Huggy’s-Shilo Senior Men’s Match Play tournament has been postponed to later in the summer. New dates have not been confirmed … Seminars on golf handicaps and rules are being offered by the Brandon Ladies’ Golf Club of the Wheat City course on Saturday at Grand Valley Community Church. The seminars are open to men, women and juniors and cost $10 for adults or $5 for juniors. For more information, call Bev Ranson at 204-725-2054 or Dot Burgess at 204-726-4807 … The Northern Pines women’s league will hold its registration day on Wednesday at the Trails West restaurant at 10 a.m. League games start on May 14 between 7 and 9 a.m. For more information, call Marg Stirling at 204-725-1897 … After a three-year absence, the Brandon Ladies’ Western Open tournament will return this season. It will be held at the Wheat City course on Aug. 10 with a shotgun start at 9 a.m. A junior flight for players 18 and under has also been added. For more information, contact Janice Meadows at 204-728-0708.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition May 1, 2014