As the snow has slowly melted away in central Alberta golf courses in the area have been preparing to open for the season.
Golfers can dust off their clubs and hit the links as soon as this weekend while other courses might be slightly delayed.
General Manager of Riverbend Golf and Recreation Area Rob MacPherson said they’ll be open on Wednesday, May 26, and expect a busy day.
“The weather is supposed to be good. We’re planning to start booking tee times on Sunday for that Wednesday opening,” he said.
“It’s shaping up to be a busy season. Our bookings and past sales are as strong as ever so we’re expecting a good year.”
MacPherson said the course made it through the winter well and due to frost they’re still working on getting the course ready.
Meanwhile, Balmoral Golf Course is opening its doors on Saturday, April 22, and began taking tee times earlier this week. This year is also their 60th anniversary since they opened to the public in 1963.
Clubhouse manager Luke Parenteau said the course is still a bit brown but the greens are in great shape.
“This Saturday morning is pretty booked up and the phone has been pretty busy. It’s filling up on Saturday and a little bit more on Sunday,” he said.
“The melted snow kind of sunk into the ground really quick so it’s not super wet yet. From what the grounds crew says it’s looking pretty good.”
Parenteau expects them to do well this season however he said there will be fewer people golfing since the last three years saw an increase due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The boom from COVID is going a bit down but from what it sounds like there were a lot of new people who started golfing during that time. We’re just trying to make sure they keep at it,” he said.
The Red Deer Golf and Country Club, which is a privately owned course for members only, will open on Wednesday.
General Manager Mike Kenney said they expect to have a full tee time sheet on opening day.
“The course appears to be in excellent condition. We still haven’t taken all the tarps off all the greens yet but so far everything looks excellent,” he said.
Both the Alberta Springs Golf Resort and Spirit Creek Golf and RV Park have no official opening day yet but depending on a few factors are hopeful to open late next week.
Some courses opened to the public on Friday including Lakewood Golf Resort in Red Deer and Wolf Creek in Ponoka. Meadowlands Golf Club in Sylvan Lake will be open for business on Saturday.