Approximately 50 members attended the annual fall meeting of the Morrisburg Golf Club on Sunday afternoon with much of the discussion this year centering around the summer-long problems with several of the greens.
With three greens severely damaged by blue algae, and several others showing slight damage, it was a long tough season for both the club’s board of directors and the greens staff, as they did their best to work on the problem and provide the members and paying guests the best playing conditions as was possible.
With the season now behind them, and the course officially closed to all play as of this past Monday, October 29, the board members laid out the plans for next spring’s work on the troubled one, two and three greens.
According to treasurer Sean Boulerice, greens two and three are to be sodded in the spring, while the first green which has been showing signs of recovery since it was seeded in September, will continue to be worked on.
Greens chair Shawn Hummel, along with Boulerice and club president Jason Broad, have solicited much appreciated help from several area greens professionals and it is following their advice that the club will proceed next spring.
“We started off pretty tough,” said Hummel in his report. “There was a lot of maintenance required on the equipment and we were looking at a lot of water damage on the fairways. We decided to go ahead and fix the fairway drainage problems (where required).”
Questioned as to how long the second and third greens, could be expected to be out of play after sodding next spring, Boulerice said they were hoping that it would be six weeks max, after the sodding.
Boulerice said the sodding can be done as soon as the ground reaches a temperature of 50 degrees and that will be dependent on the weather. “So we are hoping to get an early spring and to get at it in April,” he said.
With declining membership, which is being felt throughout the golf industry, and the fear of losing more members due to the problems with the greens, at the advice of the executive, the Morrisburg Golf Club members voted a fairly hefty drop in membership fees for the 2013 season.
“We feel that by lowering our prices, we would be very price competitive,” said Boulerice explaining the board has looked at other clubs’ pricing and what they have been doing to attract members and green fee players.
The drop sees the fee for single member golfers drop from last year’s $540 to $450 (before applicable taxes and a club levy that is being collected to help pay for the beautiful deck added to the clubhouse two years ago).
All membership categories were adjusted to correspond to the base rate change and come spring reduced green fees will be put into effect.
The club will also have membership gift certificates available immediately for people to purchase as Christmas gifts.
The meeting ended with the annual election of officers for the 2013 season which saw the majority of board members returned.
The main changes in the board are in the club captain positions as Monique Patenaude takes over for Lori-Anne Davies who finished out two terms, and Andy Patenaude replaces Bob Mann who handled the men’s duties in 2012.
Jason Broad was returned as president, Mick Mabo as 1st vice-president and Barry Henderson as second vice-president. Sean Boulerice remained as treasurer, Candace Jamieson as secretary and Shawn Hummel as greens chair. A seniors rep had yet to be found to replace Lawrence Larocque who has stepped down.