Golf Course Gears Up For 2023 Season

The Swan Hills Golf and Country Club (SHGCC) Board and Directors met on Thursday to discuss and plan for the upcoming season. The SHGCC is facing significant challenges as it heads into 2023 with a list of expensive repair work to be completed on golf course mechanical equipment and inside the clubhouse. In addition, most of the club’s routine operating expenses (equipment maintenance and repairs, fuel, fertilizer, green treatment, etc.) have risen significantly.

The SHGCC is starting the year with just over $3200 in the bank. The required repairs and maintenance of the golf course’s mechanical equipment are estimated at roughly $25,000. Further repairs are also needed on multiple pieces of equipment in the clubhouse kitchen, including the grill, hood range, fire system, emergency lights, fire extinguishers and ice machine.

With increasing operating expenses and a daunting list of repairs to be completed, the SHGCC has had to make some tough decisions to raise some of the club’s prices. The daily green fees for non-members are set to increase by roughly 10%. Membership fees will also increase by 10%, but not until May 16, so anyone who purchases their membership by May 15 will still be paying last year’s rates.

The golf cart shed fee will increase from $250 to $500/year, which may seem dramatic, but some context is in order. The cart shed fee has remained constant at the SHGCC for roughly 20 years, while the practice has changed significantly at most other courses in the province. Many golf courses no longer allow members to use and house their personal golf carts on-site, and the going rate starts at around $900/year for the courses that do allow this feature.

As a new feature this year, the SHGCC will now be available to book for private functions and tournaments. The entire golf course will be made available for the exclusive use of private groups of up to 72 golfers for a daily fee. This package includes the green fees for each participant.

The SHGCC will be participating in a casino fundraising event in St. Albert from June 22 – 23. Twelve volunteers are needed to run this event successfully; eight have signed up. Please get in touch with Bev Arsenault if you would like to volunteer for this event.

For local businesses, the SHGCC is conducting a sign drive. For an annual donation, the club will put up a custom sign at one of the course’s tee-off boxes, providing maximum exposure for your company.

The SHGCC has a full lineup of exciting events planned for 2023. In addition to the annual Oilmen’s and Lady’s tournaments, the club will host a Mixed Open and a Junior tournament. There will also be a skills competition and night golf (including a family night golf event).

For those that would like to join the SHGCC Committee, they are looking for a Secretary on the Executive Board as well as Directors. There will also be an Oilmen’s meeting to help plan the upcoming tournament on March 2 at 7:00 PM at the curling rink. The SHGCC is currently looking for a clubhouse manager and staff, so keep an eye out for upcoming job postings.

Curling fans should get in on the 2023 Brier Curling Raffle for a chance to win $1000. Contact Chase Simard, Danelle Mast, Scott Berry, or the front desk of the Derrick Motor Inn to purchase your squares.

The Swan Hills Golf and Country Club is an integral part of the Swan Hills community; we are fortunate to have such fantastic recreational facilities just outside town. Please help to support our SHGCC as they navigate one of their most challenging years to date.

Dean LaBerge, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Grizzly Gazette