Bathurst, Coffs Harbour, Coonabarabran, Lord Howe Island and Nelson Bay golf clubs have been announced as finalists in the Country Club of the Year category of the NSW Golf Industry awards.
Bathurst Golf Club has become a perennial host of Golf NSW Championships over the last few years, including the NSW Senior and Mid Amateur Championships, and as a host of a NSW Open Regional Qualifying event, the Bathurst Open. It is also the host site of the largest Jack Newton Junior Golf Masters event outside of Metropolitan Sydney. The club has shown a year on year growth of its membership base since 2013 by almost 15%, making it one of the fastest growing clubs in NSW.
Coonabarabran Golf Club is still striving to help its’ community in as many ways as possible. The club allows its facilities to be used by its community for free, whether it be for a meeting or a fundraising night like the recent Westpac Chopper Cocktail Blingo night, which raised over $5000 for the rescue organisation.
Coffs Harbour Golf Club, the host course for the 2018 NSW Women’s Open, proved to many what a determined, committed membership could do on a short time frame to ensure the tournament’s success. Besides hosting the Women’s Open, the club has spent a lot of time improving the quality of the golf course, and built a business with several diversified streams of income to ensure its financial health and not be solely reliant on Golf competitions or membership.
Lord Howe Island Golf Club, possibly the State’s most remote course, has been successful in reducing its debt in recent years as well as increasing its membership base. It has an active volunteer program that assists in running several initiatives including the MyGolf Junior Program. Due to its strong membership growth, the club has recently employed its first full-time greenkeeper. A sign of the increase in participation in the sport on the World Heritage listed Island is its’ annual Open tournament, which this year has attracted 72 starters, up from 22 in 2017.
Nelson Bay Golf Club has bounced back remarkably after a fire ravaged its clubhouse in September 2015. One of the largest employers in the Port Stephens Area, the club provides a substantial economic spin-off to many local suppliers and tourism operators around the town. The club has a strong golfing base and fields 11 representative pennant teams in district competition. Over 75,000 rounds were played in the 2017/18 financial year, and the club hosted over 200 functions.
Stuart Fraser, CEO of Golf NSW said the five finalists were good examples of how vital regional and country golf clubs were to their communities.
“So many regional and country towns rely on the business and goodwill that our clubs generate.
“All of the finalists are fine examples of how much is done by the sport to ensure the health of the community across the State.
“They are great examples for others in the industry who are looking for the key to not only keep the doors open, but how to build a healthy club for all members to benefit from,” Mr Fraser said.
The winner of the Country Club of the Year will be announced at the NSW Golf Industry Awards night on Monday, 22 October, at Curzon Hall, Marsfield.
Tickets to the night are now on sale and cost $140.00 each or $1300 for a table of ten.
For more information, please visit www.golfnsw.org