A lot of changes have taken place at Gardner Golf Course, according to information provided at the Sept. 7 council meeting.
According to Mike Mallory, manager,improvements include: new irrigation system, reseeding, new green, leveled tee boxes, installing zoysia sod on tee boxes and stripping zoysia to the fairways.
They are about 85-90 percent done, Mallory, said.
In 2018, the course had 5000-5500 rounds. In 2019, it increased to 7500 rounds. In 2020, play increased to over 15,000 rounds. The course is on pace to beat last year’s rounds this year.
Other improvements include: new tee boxes, improved the clubhouse, cleared trees, and cleaned up the shop area. They are working with city staff to cap old oil wells and move power lines across fairways.
The main complaint they get are cart paths.
Randy Gregorcyk, councilmember, asked if there is any opportunity to use leftover asphalt from the streets project on the cart paths.
The city contracts the asphalt, there isn’t any spare, according to staff. The city pays for the asphalt used.
Several council members inquired about a visioning session for the back 9 holes.
The 10 year agreement with JPM Enterprises, LLC, dba GreatLIFE Golf and Fitness to operate the Gardner Golf Course began April 17, 2018, and will expire on Dec. 31, 2028.
Under the terms of this agreement, the operator (GreatLIFE) is to manage, operate, and staff the Gardner Golf Course. According to the agreement this for the front nine holes of the Gardner Golf Course only. The operator will not operate or benefit from the back nine holes of the golf course.
When the agreement was approved, the city’s first and biggest obligation was council approval of a $867,240 contract with Midwest Irrigation, LLC, to replace the irrigation system at the Gardner Golf.
There had been prior discussion in 2014 that cited $3.4 million needed for improvements, which included a $1.3 million clubhouse.