The past two years have been difficult for the golf industry.
The worldwide pandemic has changed the way golf clubs have operated and introduced strict measures to help protect the golfing public.
Golf tournaments have virtually disappeared, indoor dining has been banned, and social get-togethers after a round of golf have been eliminated.
This spring saw golf courses shut down in an attempt to slow down the spread of the Covid virus. Golf courses lost substantial revenues and golf club employees were unable to work and bring home their regular paycheques.
When golf courses finally reopened at the end of May, demand for the game was at an all time high.
Tee times were hard to find as were golf clubs at most local golf shops. Men, women, and juniors have taken up the game in astounding numbers. This spike in demand for the game should help some courses recoup some of their revenues lost earlier in the year.
The government recently moved to Stage 3 in early July which allowed golf courses to slowly relax restrictions.
Amenities on golf courses that we used to take for granted are back. Benches to sit on, ball washers to clean our golf balls, and even rakes are back in the bunkers. Finally, we can again touch and remove the flags, but golfers do have the option of leaving the flag in when they putt. This rule change was introduced a couple of years ago to help simplify the game and help improve the speed of play.
We all must continue to socially distance ourselves and wear masks when we enter clubhouses and pro shops and dining indoors. These measures will help ensure the health and safety of all golfers and golf club staff moving forward.
I encourage everyone to get vaccinated. This is the best way we can ensure that the golf industry can get back to fully operating and getting back to normal.
Cameron Burechails (Teaching Professional)
The Georgian Bay Golf Academy @Batteaux Creek Golf Club