Sunday, July 04, 2010

Corpus Golf Scene as Microcosm

The Corpus Christi Caller-Times has a good at the struggling golf scene in Corpus. As noted here before, Corpus has gone from its golfers clamoring for new places to play because of overcrowding at the two municipal tracks, to courses shutting down for lack of play. The newspaper's articles points out that at their peak a few years ago, Oso Beach Municipal and Gabe Lozano Sr. Golf Center attracked 150,000 rounds a year between them. That's an astounding amount of play for two golf courses. But that total has sinced dropped by half. And not because golfers are playing other courses - other courses are closing; many Corpus golfers apparently just stopped playing.

The article begins:

Corpus Christi golf courses are facing closure, financial trouble and sinking player interest.

It's a trend mirrored nationwide, and it's likely to get worse before it gets better, experts say.

Pharaohs Golf Club closed Wednesday after 46 years of operations because owners couldn't justify dipping further into their own pockets to keep it afloat.

It's the most recent bad news for Corpus Christi's golfing community.

Due in part to the economic downturn and also to player's declining interest, free time and discretionary spending, thousands of courses across the country are in danger of closing or have.

Kings Crossing Golf Course closed in July 2009. In May, owners of the Newport Dunes course in Port Aransas filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, less than two years after opening.

Rounds of golf played at Padre Isles Country Club have dropped 35 percent and memberships dropped by 57 percent since levels peaked in 2001, General Manager Charlie Eskridge said.

"If it was just for golf right now, I'd probably close," he said.

Read the full article.

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