Family membership with children proposed
BY KEVIN BONESKE
In an effort to attract more people to Rhinelander’s city-owned Northwood Golf Course, which has accumulated losses in the neighborhood of $1 million and is currently undergoing a business review of its operations, one of the promotional efforts proposed for next year by the course’s golf professional, Dan Buckley, is to offer a family membership that would include a couple along with the children.
“We are currently offering a singles membership and a couples membership,” Buckley said at Tuesday’s Golf Course Advisory Committee meeting. “It was suggested that we should put kids on that (couples membership)…. If you have a couple, why not include (the children)?”
Buckley said having a family membership wouldn’t be an additional cost to the golf course.
“It maybe brings (in) those families and opens up the avenues for other families that we don’t have,” he said.
Buckley said the couples membership could be marketed for next year as also including children.
“Let’s teach these kids how to play,” he said. “Start a marketing program of let’s bring these kids up. We teach them core values, we teach them how to be honest, how to count the scores, good etiquette and things like that.”
Committee chairman Tom Kelly said he favored memberships for next year that included juniors, singles and couples/families with the latter category being able to have children up to age 17.
Golf course superintendent Joe Andersen said the proposed family membership could be included as part of the 2018 fee structure to be presented at the committee’s next meeting Oct. 3.
To attract new memberships for next year, Andersen said he favors continuing the practice of those buying a 2018 membership to be able to play the balance of this year’s golf season at no extra charge. Committee members agreed that practice could continue.
The manager of Mulligan’s Restaurant at the golf course, Dave O’Melia, said one idea he had for a possible promotion next year is a Friday “golf and fish” for $20 , in which $10 would be for golf and $10 for a fish fry.
“Chances are they’re going to rent a cart,” O’Melia said. “It might help both ends of the business.”
Buckley also suggested a coupon promotion for the schools to buy one green fee and get the other free next year if a cart is also paid for to golf on the course, though that offer wouldn’t be valid in July.