The Board of Directors at Kimberley Golf Club (KGC) has some exciting news for the upcoming golf season, including new punch passes, membership benefits and events all summer long.
The Bulletin met with President of KGC John Birrell, Vice President Gord Jenkins, and Director of Golf Simon Jones, to discuss the upcoming season.
Jenkins explained that in the fall of 2017, the board had a meeting with their members at the Kimberley Conference Centre.
“We had very good feedback, the board and the golf club’s management have put together a new business plan, a new pricing structure and a new range of passes and memberships for 2018,” said Jenkins.
Birrell agreed, saying that KGC is growing members and golfers from a grassroots, community perspective.
“It’s an older club, it’s been around for over 90 years,” said Birrell. “We want to keep the course alive and support the community affordably.”
The club’s early bird membership drive netted 190 memberships for 2018, versus 141 last year for the same period ending December 31.
“This number included a conversion of 47 yard carders to members. Our total dollars are up over last year as a result of the early bird and new member program, it’s a strong support indicator,” Birrell said. “We have had a lot of positive feedback about our books of five and ten for next year and they make very good gifts for friends and relatives. It’s an easy entry finance wise.”
The books of five and ten are a punch pass system, similar to a gift card, with 18 holes per pass or nine holes per half pass. The Five Round Pass Book is $200 while the Ten Round Pass Book is $380.
Jones says that KGC also already has a number of small group bookings that they didn’t have at this time last year, along with four outside events planned including the EK Ladies Challenge, the BC Games, the EK Senior Men’s and one other event.
“This translates into increased revenue in all areas,” said Jones. “We will also be hosting junior and ladies clinics, which were very successful last year, and we will be offering a ladies night following the clinics.”
Jones says that last year both the ladies and junior clinics saw upwards of 90 participants, all at a fair price, “a membership for juniors is only $75.”
KGC will also see a number of returning staff members, including Food and Beverage Manager Joanna Heath, who will be heading up the Live on the Deck live music series all summer long. Last year, Jones says, the Live on the Deck Series saw anywhere from 80 to 150 people at each event.
“We have been very fortunate over the last number of years to have a very good management team and stable returning staff,” Jenkins said. “Our sales in both food and beverage and the golf shop have seen increases again this year and we have been discussing ways to change some of the things we do to save on wages for the coming year to help keep costs down.”
In terms of the course itself, Jenkins said they had numerous people comment about the good course conditions last season, despite a a year that was very dry and had forest fires close by. KGC will also see some changes with renovations to both #13 and 14 tees.
“In both cases it will allow easier access to the tee boxes for our equipment and a set of forward tees making it more playable for some,” Jenkins said. “We were fortunate to have Tom Jost offer to trade machine work for a spousal membership, saving us dollars on the project.”
KGC also invested in a new used rough mower (2200 hours) for the coming season to replace the old one, which ended the season with a cracked block at 9000 hours.
With that, the t-sheets are now open via online booking. Jones says that in order to get your preferred t-time, booking in advance is recommended.
“Summer comes quick so call or book online now,” said Jones, who explained that in May the course will again offer their popular Demo Days. “For someone who wants to buy new clubs or check out the latest products, demo days are a great way to do so. Book a demo day now because they fill up quickly.”
In terms of when the course will officially open for business, Birrell says some time at the end of April. The pro shop will likely open in April, but you can go online to book a t-time or call and leave a message at the course until then.
“We’ve got a new menu, new product, new lines, and new prices,” said Jones. “We’re looking forward to an exciting season.”