BRUCE BUMSTEAD/BRANDON SUN
The spring weather as has limited Westman golfers’ ability to hit the links so far, but that will change soon, with the Shilo Country Club scheduled to open today.
Everyone who works at golf courses around Brandon is desperately hoping for the weather to warm and clear up so the golf season can officially begin.
The Shilo Country Club is set to open today, but Glen Lea and Northern Pines are waiting for sunshine with temperatures around 10 or 12 before they open their doors. That could mean Monday or Tuesday, but they’re keeping their fingers crossed that it could be as early as this weekend.
"We’re ready to go," said Rich Bull, who owns Northern Pines. "Just waiting for a nice day. … Just have to put the flags out. There’s no point in opening it when it’s too crappy to get golfers. We’re watching the forecast every day."
Bull said Northern Pines wintered well, while Glen Lea manager Jason Earl was also happy with how his course came through the snow-filled months.
While those courses are patiently waiting for the weather to improve, the Shilo club is going full steam ahead with its plans to open. However, manager Scott Ramsay is also hoping for better weather.
"It would be nice if the weather would be consistently better," he said. "The cold weather has a huge impact on us because fewer people play and that’s less revenue. We’re excited to get the doors open, but not so much about the weather."
Despite the cold weather and late snow delaying its opening, Ramsay likes the shape his course is in.
"The (greens are) good," he said. "There’s no disease or mould or anything. What’s going on now is they’re basically dormant from the cold. They’re coming out of dormancy and they’re looking like they’ll be outstanding real soon."
Shilo will look similar to past years when the course opens today, but that will change late in May with a new green for the 18th hole.
Meanwhile, Deer Ridge has yet to set an opening date, and the Wheat City is targetting the second week in May.
Wheat City staff is waiting for the remaining snow to melt and crews are trying to pump the sitting water from the course. Manager Bryce Wilson said he wants to make sure the full course is ready before it opens as he doesn’t want to risk any more damage. The Wheat City reopened fully last year after more than a year of rebuilding following a 2011 flood.
CHIP SHOTS: The inaugural Huggy’s-Shilo Senior Men’s Match Play tournament needs players. The event, which has 36 holes of stroke play qualifying before flights of match play, will take place on weekends starting on May 3. The entry fee is $200 per player or $125 for Shilo members. For more information, contact Alex Peters at 204-724-5116 … The Glen Lea Senior Golf League for competitors 55 and older will hold its annual meeting on Tuesday at the course at 10 a.m. Past, present and future members are invited to attend. For more information, contact the course at 204-728-9090 or to enter a new team call Marv Pidhorny at 204-727-0105 … Glen Lea’s 18-hole Golf Club will hold its spring meeting on Tuesday at 7 p.m., at the course’s clubhouse. All golfers who have played in the league or any prospective members are invited to come. The deadline to join the league is May 1. For more information, phone Cheryl at 204-728-4379 or the clubhouse at 204-728-9090 … The Wheat City Women’s 9-hole League will hold a luncheon/meeting on Wednesday at Canad Inns at 11:30 a.m. New members are welcome and may register there. For more information, call Gayle Lyburn at 204-725-3377 or Isobel Robertson at 204-728-4192 … The Wheat City Senior Men’s Golf Club, for people 55 and older, is having its registration day and general meeting on Wednesday at the course’s restaurant. Registration is set for 9 a.m., followed by the meeting a half hour later. For more information, contact Bruce Ray at 204-726-0013 or Ben Laursen at 204-728-2060 … Seminars on golf handicaps and rules are being offered by the Brandon Ladies’ Golf Club of the Wheat City course on May 3 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 … After a three-year absence, the Brandon Ladies’ Western Open tournament will return. It will be held at the Wheat City course on Aug. 10 with a 9 a.m., shotgun start. A junior flight for players 18 and under has also been added. For more information, phone Janice Meadows at 204-728-0708.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition April 24, 2014