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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


Addressing gulf on golf

Returning the Ocean Pines golf course to local control by ending the contract with Landscapes Unlimited was the right move for the Ocean Pines Board of Directors, who ascertained correctly that saving money in this instance is as good as making it.
Even though Landscapes did make improvements in the operation, the course looks to be close to $100,000 off budget this year, thereby activating the $50,000 opt-out trigger in the original contract.
Also per that agreement, which took effect in May 2015, the board was paying Landscapes close to $80,000 a year to run the course. By lopping off that bill, the board has taken a big step toward making up some budgetary ground.
But even though this management change makes sense, it isn’t going to solve all the golf club’s problems, as some of them are tied to an industry that isn’t growing as it once did.
As of 2016, the number of rounds played had been flat for five years, as Baby Boomers age out of the market and Millennials have been slow to embrace the sport.
The bright hope for golf now is its introduction to the youth market, which has its own obstacles, most notably the sport’s associated expenses.
Bearing that in mind, the community should not expect miracles to arise out of the club’s return to local management, as it will have to wrestle with issues that are industry-wide.