By JONATHAN PENROSE
YLOA General Manager
The YLP golf course is a very important park amenity. It is a challenging 9 holes with a beautiful layout and some of the best greens in the valley.
We have an avid and passionate golf community here in the park that includes a number of dedicated volunteers who organize community tournaments, raise money to help support the course and host an annual fund-raising event for our local fire station.
While there are many members worthy of kudos, I’d like to publicly thank Roger Hoff and John Wandler for all they do.
I’ve been blessed to play two courses that have hosted PGA tour events and our greens compare very favorably — especially when you factor in our location and operating costs. We have a hidden gem right outside our doors and I encourage you to take advantage of it!
That being said, over the last several years we have experienced a decline in golf course revenues, an increase in operational costs and a buildup of deferred maintenance. After reviewing the situation and analyzing the numbers I believe we can reverse this trend and improve the value of the golf course for our entire community.
To do this I have created a new position and hired Ken Souza as Golf Course Manager. Ken has years of golf course experience having previously served as an assistant golf pro, worked in the pro shop and assisted with golf course maintenance. In this new role, Ken will coordinate our golf course operations and serve as a central point of contact for golf course activities. He will be responsible for supervising the golf course marshals, managing our relationship with Sierra Golf Management to maintain our course, acting as primary liaison to YLGA and developing new revenue sources from increased play and hosted tournament opportunities.
Beginning Monday, August 6th, we will be changing the golf course hours. The new schedule will be Monday to Saturday from 7 to 3 and Sunday from 7 to 6. We experience little to no play on hot afternoons and this change will reduce our labor expenses by 10-15%, even with the new position.
We plan to use 50% of these savings to address deferred maintenance — which should make the course more attractive to golfers outside the park and help bring in additional revenue. As an example, we will be repairing the cart path near tee box 1 within the next month.
Additionally, I am working with Ken Harrington to explore a sustained, consistent and affordable source of water for the course using a well that is not suitable for drinking water — though this will take some time.
All together, I believe these steps (and others we will discuss in the future) will enhance this valuable park amenity and provide greater value to our homeowners and residents.
If you are new to golf and/or want to get involved, please talk to Ken Souza at the pro shop.