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Frustration building higher at Ontario golf courses as lockdown order extended again

Courses are losing thousands daily as shutdown drags on


May 14, 2021
By Turf & Rec

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A motion that might have enabled golf courses to reopen sooner than the June 2 stay-at-home deadline was defeated yesterday. Turf & Rec photo

Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s announcement yesterday wasn’t what the province’s golf courses wanted to hear. Hopeful that golf might be able to reopen – even if the stay-at-home order was extended another two weeks – the opposite happened. The lockdown was, in fact, extended until at least June 2, and golf courses have been included, again, in the order.

Golf courses in Ontario are becoming increasingly frustrated with each passing day of the lockdown as lost revenues in green fees are amounting to thousands of dollars daily. Yet, they’re pouring significant amounts of money into maintenance to ensure greens, tees and fairways don’t succumb to neglect.

It’s a burden that many courses are finding difficult to bear. This is certainly the case at the Sawmill Golf Course in Fenwick, where not only is golf not being played, but instructional, revenue-generating clinics are being canceled. The lack of golf has led to its staff complement of 30 reduced to six. The Listowel Golf Club has been forced to trim its staff by two-thirds for similar reasons.

To read more of this story from TSN, click here.

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The general manager at the Stratford Municipal Golf Course says he can’t fathom why some businesses are allowed to remain open while golf courses are shuttered, especially when data confirms no COVID-19 cases have originated from golf courses. While the premier says the potential for mobility is the reason for golf’s extended closure, National Golf Course Owners’ Association statistics suggest 85 per cent of all rounds played during the pandemic are taking place within 20 minutes of golfers’ homes.

To read more of this story from MyStratfordNow.com, click here.

Golf Ontario executive director Mike Kelly argues mobility is not an issue with golf, adding data from 2020 clearly shows golf is being played in the home communities of golfers. He also noted medical professionals are suggesting golf and other outdoor recreational activities are healthy pursuits that are safe.

To read more of this story from NewsTalk 1010, click here.

The general manager at The Landings Golf Course and Teaching Centre in Kingston took exception to Ford’s comment about golfers “picking up their buddies,” playing golf and then enjoying some “pops” together afterwards. He said it’s an “anecdotal” story that lacks any scientific sense.

In the same story, published by The New Westminster Record, Ian Leggatt, former Canadian PGA Tour pro and current general manager at Toronto’s St. George’s Golf & Country Club, said Ford is an embarrassment to Ontario and its golf community, suggesting he should stay away from “pops” before addressing the public.

To read more of the story, click here.


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2 Comments » for Frustration building higher at Ontario golf courses as lockdown order extended again
  1. Steve Brown says:

    Why does Doogie think it is acceptable to open provincial parks, including boat launch facilities, will keeping golf courses closed?
    Does Doogie think there is no issue with mobility in getting to the parks, what does he have planned to police stay at home orders in these parks?
    Doug Ford is a hypocrite and really needs to lay off the “pops” before making any further decisions!!

  2. bob dale says:

    Toronto is shutting down roads for cyclist and walkers people are congregating in parks. Look at the roads do you really think people are staying at home.

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