Thinking about joining a private club....pros and cons

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  • mantanmantan Members Posts: 2,574 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 17, 2016 #32
    tsecor wrote:


    how diverse is it?




    Not sure if it's a trolling type question, but one factor I do look for is the overall makeup/feel/vibe of the membership group. Is it a an older more established club that's more cliquish/stuffy. Is it a younger membership that has a lot of families. Demographically, DFW is DFW and outside of some of the big money older clubs, you're pretty much going to get a cross section of society. Especially since so many people have moved into the area in the last 30 years.



    I'm still taking an honest assessment of the total cost. It was good advice to think of it costing a bit more than anticipating for all things and making sure I'm totally comfortable with the outlay. With a kid heading off the college this fall, some expenses are going to go up. (but free time as well!) I'm also looking at the net increase as opposed to the total cost....



    I'm still on the fence...but need to visit the other club again.
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  • tsecortsecor Loading........ Members Posts: 4,336 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    mantan wrote:

    tsecor wrote:


    how diverse is it?




    Not sure if it's a trolling type question, but one factor I do look for is the overall makeup/feel/vibe of the membership group. Is it a an older more established club that's more cliquish/stuffy. Is it a younger membership that has a lot of families. Demographically, DFW is DFW and outside of some of the big money older clubs, you're pretty much going to get a cross section of society. Especially since so many people have moved into the area in the last 30 years.



    I'm still taking an honest assessment of the total cost. It was good advice to think of it costing a bit more than anticipating for all things and making sure I'm totally comfortable with the outlay. With a kid heading off the college this fall, some expenses are going to go up. (but free time as well!) I'm also looking at the net increase as opposed to the total cost....



    I'm still on the fence...but need to visit the other club again.


    why would that be a trolling question? Its an open and honest question....what would you be looking for? a very diverse club or something with "old texas money"?



    myself, i do not believe in pvt clubs because it excludes people.......but i do not care if everyone else does not feel the same way....have at it, its just not for me
  • GolfNuts4GolfNuts4 Members Posts: 741 ✭✭✭✭✭
    If you are trying to justify it by a price X rounds played, you are not looking at it holistically. Private clubs price per round will almost always be higher than public golf. It is a lifestyle, not just golf.
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  • mantanmantan Members Posts: 2,574 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    tsecor wrote:

    mantan wrote:

    tsecor wrote:


    how diverse is it?




    Not sure if it's a trolling type question, but one factor I do look for is the overall makeup/feel/vibe of the membership group. Is it a an older more established club that's more cliquish/stuffy. Is it a younger membership that has a lot of families. Demographically, DFW is DFW and outside of some of the big money older clubs, you're pretty much going to get a cross section of society. Especially since so many people have moved into the area in the last 30 years.



    I'm still taking an honest assessment of the total cost. It was good advice to think of it costing a bit more than anticipating for all things and making sure I'm totally comfortable with the outlay. With a kid heading off the college this fall, some expenses are going to go up. (but free time as well!) I'm also looking at the net increase as opposed to the total cost....



    I'm still on the fence...but need to visit the other club again.


    why would that be a trolling question? Its an open and honest question....what would you be looking for? a very diverse club or something with "old texas money"?



    myself, i do not believe in pvt clubs because it excludes people.......but i do not care if everyone else does not feel the same way....have at it, its just not for me




    I probably read too much into it. As a black guy, there isn't a ton of diversity in any of the clubs....but there are clubs that are pretty welcoming in accommodating (especially if they have a lot of transplant members) and those that are a bit cliquish.



    Most of the private clubs I'm looking at seem to base their decision almost exclusively on if you can pay or not. At least the ones in the tier that I'm looking at. You have to get on a lot higher tier of what I'm looking for to find the clubs that require a sponsoring member and hoop jumping to qualify for membership offer....
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  • DZClarkDZClark Members Posts: 191 ✭✭✭
    pingizzle wrote:

    mantan wrote:



    If in Fort Worth you should come check out Mira Vista! It's a fantastic club!




    Been out to Mira Vista when Michael Martin was there. Saw Monte there too. Tremendous facility....but I live in Flower Mound, so it's about 49 miles door to door....


    pingizzle wrote:


    Sounds like I am in the same boat as you. I just moved to the DFW area and am looking to join a club also. I am interested to see what responses you get here.




    Welcome to DFW! For the longest time it was a picnic for public golf. Lots of capacity, cheap prices, lots of great courses. Not quite what it used to be...




    Thanks for the welcome. Ironic as we are in Flower Mound as well. I played Trohpy Club in a tournament yesterday and was not overly impressed with the facilities. This was on my short list of courses to consider given the proximity to FM. I am going to look at Lantana as well. Where are you considering?






    Member of Trophy Club CC here, live a golf cart ride away. Sorry to hear that you were not impressed with the club. I will tell you it is not over the top, but it is a very welcoming club. My family have been members now for a year, and I could not be more pleased. This is the second Club Corp club and I have had no issues with any employees at either club (Stonebridge Ranch in McKinney was the other). TCCC is very family friendly. My 2.5 year old daughter loves to go play in the late evening and the weekends usually see a large number of family's with kids, eating outside and playing on the hillside.



    It may not be for everyone, but the 36 holes of golf allow for plenty of access to the course and you will not find a friendlier golf staff than TCCC.



    As far as course membership, I love it. It is hard to justify on a per round basis, but the access to play 3-8 holes late in the day, the range and practice facilities, just the feeling of community that comes from the club. In our case, the kids are able to meet other kids and develop that love of being at the club.



    Best of luck in your search and I am happy to answer any questions you have.
  • Flames20Flames20 Members Posts: 373 ✭✭
    Biggest con for me is assessments!
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  • SadTromboneSadTrombone . Members Posts: 6,781 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    tsecor wrote:
    mantan wrote:

    tsecor wrote:


    how diverse is it?




    Not sure if it's a trolling type question, but one factor I do look for is the overall makeup/feel/vibe of the membership group. Is it a an older more established club that's more cliquish/stuffy. Is it a younger membership that has a lot of families. Demographically, DFW is DFW and outside of some of the big money older clubs, you're pretty much going to get a cross section of society. Especially since so many people have moved into the area in the last 30 years.



    I'm still taking an honest assessment of the total cost. It was good advice to think of it costing a bit more than anticipating for all things and making sure I'm totally comfortable with the outlay. With a kid heading off the college this fall, some expenses are going to go up. (but free time as well!) I'm also looking at the net increase as opposed to the total cost....



    I'm still on the fence...but need to visit the other club again.


    why would that be a trolling question? Its an open and honest question....what would you be looking for? a very diverse club or something with "old texas money"?



    myself, i do not believe in pvt clubs because it excludes people.......but i do not care if everyone else does not feel the same way....have at it, its just not for me




    I'm coming over for dinner tonight. I'll also be taking your car to work for the next six months.



    Don't exclude me. image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />
  • HackerD  HackerD Student of the game Members Posts: 3,196 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    2bGood wrote:


    Pros

    - LOTS of golfing buddies. It make take some time but if you pick the right course you make lots of friends that love to golf

    - Way more options for competitive golf

    - Better access to the Tee

    - Playing a few holes in the evening just to relax

    - you will golf more

    - Might be good for work in many ways



    Cons

    - You will spend more on golf as you will be paying for golf wether you play or not

    - You will golf more




    ^^^ this



    But take into account who you typically play with and whether joining will disrupt that. If already know people at this course that's a plus.
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  • A.G. Pennypacker A.G. Pennypacker Members Posts: 489 ✭✭✭✭
    This is my first year as a member at a private course. We have a short season here in the great white north (last year was one of my longest at Late April - Early Nov), so the cost makes it tough to justify.



    As mentioned, biggest pros are pace of play (usually never over a 4:10 round. Yesterday I played in 3:40) and you get out a lot more. Previously, it was really tough to justify paying $100/rd for each my wife and I if the weather wasn't great, or tee time wasn't perfect.... now we just go, regardless of time or weather. Already paid, might as well be there. I've golfed as much in the last 6 weeks as I did in almost the entire season last year.



    TL;DR - if you have the money, and your family will golf with you, go for it! You won't regret it.
  • A.G. Pennypacker A.G. Pennypacker Members Posts: 489 ✭✭✭✭
    I forgot to mention RE: membership demographics. Our club is all old. Quite old. And we're both under the age of 30. The average age of membership where we are is going up by 0.5 years every season, but with every year that's passed we see more and more young families joining. Just because a club is old now, doesn't mean it will stay old.



    Also, with older members, usually pace of play is always predictable (and fast), which is a really nice benefit.
  • ChipDriverChipDriver Members Posts: 3,058 ✭✭
    mantan wrote:


    Title says it all. Living in DFW, I never thought I'd join a country club. There are a lot of public courses in town and I thought I'd feel 'stuck' playing the same course.



    But the golf market has changed over the last year. For about 10 years there was a bit of a glut of courses. It was pretty easy to get on, prices were fairly low and other than peak times, pace of play was pretty good. But with the floods of last year damaging a lot of courses, supply has dried up and it seems like long rounds are becoming the norm. And courses that used to pride themselves on outstanding conditions seem to be mailing it in.



    With the kids getting older, I'm thinking of joining one of the Club Corp courses in town. The initiation fees at entry-mid level courses are pretty reasonable and I'd have the ability to play several of the courses in town for free each month and some of the upper end ones for a fee.



    Looking at the monthlies, my golf spend would be slightly higher. The biggest downside is there is a course by my house that I play/practice at. The closest Club Corp course is by my office (about 20 minutes away). It would be great for practicing/playing after work, but wouldn't be as convenient on weekend.



    Thoughts?




    In my personal opinion - just b/c you join a CC doesn't mean that it should be your ONLY course, but it should at least be one of your favorites. You become more efficient with your time, and better at your game - and your rounds are easier to get, faster to play, and more improvement b/c the CC course is (ostensibly) a favorite and is challenging. So when you go to your other courses- you'll be better there too.



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  • tsecortsecor Loading........ Members Posts: 4,336 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    tsecor wrote:
    mantan wrote:

    tsecor wrote:


    how diverse is it?




    Not sure if it's a trolling type question, but one factor I do look for is the overall makeup/feel/vibe of the membership group. Is it a an older more established club that's more cliquish/stuffy. Is it a younger membership that has a lot of families. Demographically, DFW is DFW and outside of some of the big money older clubs, you're pretty much going to get a cross section of society. Especially since so many people have moved into the area in the last 30 years.



    I'm still taking an honest assessment of the total cost. It was good advice to think of it costing a bit more than anticipating for all things and making sure I'm totally comfortable with the outlay. With a kid heading off the college this fall, some expenses are going to go up. (but free time as well!) I'm also looking at the net increase as opposed to the total cost....



    I'm still on the fence...but need to visit the other club again.


    why would that be a trolling question? Its an open and honest question....what would you be looking for? a very diverse club or something with "old texas money"?



    myself, i do not believe in pvt clubs because it excludes people.......but i do not care if everyone else does not feel the same way....have at it, its just not for me




    I'm coming over for dinner tonight. I'll also be taking your car to work for the next six months.



    Don't exclude me. image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />


    you can have my car. Its nothing to write home about image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />



    and you are welcome for dinner anytime. I can cook a little bit, so you wont be disappointed image/wink.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=';)' />
  • putting_fore_doughputting_fore_dough Banned Posts: 170
    Club Corp SUCKS. All they care about is selling you a $12 Jack and Coke and $40 Steak. They could care less about golf course conditions. I've fought with them for 8 years now about the conditions at my old club. Do yourself a favor and find a private club not managed and owned by ClubCorp.



    However, If you don't mind playing on mediocre (at best) course conditions and having your membership whored out to everyone....CLub Corp may be for you.
  • mwmgolfxmwmgolfx Members Posts: 453 ✭✭✭✭


    This is my first year as a member at a private course. We have a short season here in the great white north (last year was one of my longest at Late April - Early Nov), so the cost makes it tough to justify.



    As mentioned, biggest pros are pace of play (usually never over a 4:10 round. Yesterday I played in 3:40) and you get out a lot more. Previously, it was really tough to justify paying $100/rd for each my wife and I if the weather wasn't great, or tee time wasn't perfect.... now we just go, regardless of time or weather. Already paid, might as well be there. I've golfed as much in the last 6 weeks as I did in almost the entire season last year.



    TL;DR - if you have the money, and your family will golf with you, go for it! You won't regret it.






    pace of play at a Club Corp club is not necessarily good. Was interested in one and played there Saturday. 4:40 round and it was slack period. hate to see pace during Dec-march time frame when all the snowbirds are back. Seemed totally un-interested in the senior handicapped player. Parking was a disaster. I play at a resort couse normally that has more play with quicker pace of play normally. I fully expected a private course to be at last playing a little faster than most public courses in the area. And from talking to the couple I played with that plays the course about 1-2 times per month, the pace we experienced is pretty normal for that course.
  • cvalcval Members Posts: 56 ✭✭
    edited Jun 1, 2016 #46
    Was following thing thread and was wondering if you made any decisions. I was also thinking about Lantana or maybe Ridglea of Mira Vista.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • baddomesbaddomes Members Posts: 5,758 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭


    Club Corp SUCKS. All they care about is selling you a $12 Jack and Coke and $40 Steak. They could care less about golf course conditions. I've fought with them for 8 years now about the conditions at my old club. Do yourself a favor and find a private club not managed and owned by ClubCorp.



    However, If you don't mind playing on mediocre (at best) course conditions and having your membership whored out to everyone....CLub Corp may be for you.




    OP, the good news is that you won't have to deal with guys like these at ClubCorp clubs. They all leave to go yell at the staff at other clubs. Conditions must have been horrible at this guy's club. He only stayed there for 8 years after they were deemed unfit.



    I'm a member at a ClubCorp club in Virginia and can honestly say I've never been given the hard sell on a Steak. Or any food. My course is in good shape, and I've played 20+ other ClubCorp clubs around the country and have always thought they're, at worst, in good condition as well. The membership is way less uppity than other places I looked at (that's a good thing), and the ONE program is worth it if you travel at all. I just wish there was one closer to downtown DC, where mixed drinks are regularly $12.
  • Roadking2003Roadking2003 AustinMembers Posts: 5,960 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Be careful with generalizations regarding Club Corp. They are not all the same. Just because one had slow play has no bearing on the others. I had a very good experience with the one I was a member of for six years.
  • theebdktheebdk Members Posts: 429 ✭✭✭✭
    Most of the reasons for joining a private have already been mentioned. I belong to a club with two regular courses and one executive course, all different in variety. I will just mention my plans for friday afternoon. I will get off an airplane returning from an out of town meeting. Will hit the range around three and then decide which course to play. Show up without a tee time and play either 9 or 18. Usually play with others but will go out as a single unless the wife joins me after her work. For some reason later friday afternoons are not very busy. I cannot wait for tommorow.
  • kdphankdphan Members Posts: 210
    I joined a private club recently



    the most important factors for me were:



    -proximity of course to where I live (about 15mins)

    -I can play whenever I want to and not have to wait (I play at around 6am)

    -How fast I can be done with a round (so far by myself and a few buddies we can finish at 3hrs). Longest was less than 4hrs when I was paired up with 3 other members.



    I know $ per round isn't worthwhile if I only play once or twice a week or sometimes not even at all. But having an 8 months old child, time spent with him is my top priority. To fit golf into my life, a private club was my only option as I can go play early mornings and get home by 10am and spend the rest of my day with him and my wife.
  • PepperturboPepperturbo Midwest and SouthwestMembers Posts: 15,839 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Private club and country club golf will be comparatively more expensive than public golf; presuming you use the facilites, get involved socially and play in club events, which are extra. The biggest reasons for joining a private club is social and quality of golf. If neither of those mean much, don't waste your money.
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  • d_macld_macl Members Posts: 4

    " I have never understood joining a club if you do not want to join in with the club membership."
    Did a trial membership (6 mos) at a local club. Glad I only did a trial, as I learned about what would be a better fit. Was looking forward to meeting some golfing folks and a little friendly competition. Instead, all of the member tournaments/events required you to have a handicap. This required 20 x 18 hole rounds. My membership ended before I had established a handicap. I never ended up playing with any other members. Was never invited to play (maybe don't include people without handicaps in the results, or something?) ; was not what I expected at all. Was fun at times but overall an awkward isolating experience.
    Costs were about 500 bucks a month. I like to walk, but figured out that I didn't like walking that course, as the 9th hole was a couple miles from the clubhouse. Wasn't really designed for walkers, and realized that was important after carrying clubs a couple miles back to the car after 9. Fees were interesting, I guess typical. Cart fee was 30$ per person, so when I took my son we had to pay $60 for the cart. Never understood why you didn't pay for one cart. It'd be like renting a car, then having your passenger pay to rent the same one LOL. Standard in the golf industry I guess?
    I'll keep looking for a club that doesn't frown upon walking; a bonus would be allowing you to wear a hat in the clubhouse:)

  • d_macld_macl Members Posts: 4

    " I have never understood joining a club if you do not want to join in with the club membership."
    Did a trial membership (6 mos) at a local club. Glad I only did a trial, as I learned about what would be a better fit. Was looking forward to meeting some golfing folks and a little friendly competition. Instead, all of the member tournaments/events required you to have a handicap. This required 20 x 18 hole rounds. My membership ended before I had established a handicap. I never ended up playing with any other members. Was never invited to play (maybe don't include people without handicaps in the results, or something?) ; was not what I expected at all. Was fun at times but overall an awkward isolating experience.
    Costs were about 500 bucks a month. I like to walk, but figured out that I didn't like walking that course, as the 9th hole was a couple miles from the clubhouse. Wasn't really designed for walkers, and realized that was important after carrying clubs a couple miles back to the car after 9. Fees were interesting, I guess typical. Cart fee was 30$ per person, so when I took my son we had to pay $60 for the cart. Never understood why you didn't pay for one cart. It'd be like renting a car, then having your passenger pay to rent the same one LOL. Standard in the golf industry I guess?
    I'll keep looking for a club that doesn't frown upon walking; a bonus would be allowing you to wear a hat in the clubhouse:)

  • d_macld_macl Members Posts: 4

    " I have never understood joining a club if you do not want to join in with the club membership."
    Did a trial membership (6 mos) at a local club. Glad I only did a trial, as I learned about what would be a better fit. Was looking forward to meeting some golfing folks and a little friendly competition. Instead, all of the member tournaments/events required you to have a handicap. This required 20 x 18 hole rounds. My membership ended before I had established a handicap. I never ended up playing with any other members. Was never invited to play (maybe don't include people without handicaps in the results, or something?) ; was not what I expected at all. Was fun at times but overall an awkward isolating experience.
    Costs were about 500 bucks a month. I like to walk, but figured out that I didn't like walking that course, as the 9th hole was a couple miles from the clubhouse. Wasn't really designed for walkers, and realized that was important after carrying clubs a couple miles back to the car after 9. Fees were interesting, I guess typical. Cart fee was 30$ per person, so when I took my son we had to pay $60 for the cart. Never understood why you didn't pay for one cart. It'd be like renting a car, then having your passenger pay to rent the same one LOL. Standard in the golf industry I guess?
    I'll keep looking for a club that doesn't frown upon walking; a bonus would be allowing you to wear a hat in the clubhouse:)

  • caniac6caniac6 Members Posts: 2,896 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    You should have checked out the layout of the course before you joined. Also, the staff should have tried to pair you up with some guys. As a provisional member, they should have bent over backwards to make you feel welcome so you would become a regular member. Sounds like you joined the wrong club.

  • d_macld_macl Members Posts: 4

    @caniac6 said:
    You should have checked out the layout of the course before you joined. Also, the staff should have tried to pair you up with some guys. As a provisional member, they should have bent over backwards to make you feel welcome so you would become a regular member. Sounds like you joined the wrong club.

    I think it was valuable, in that I learned that I really like to be able to walk 9, and end up back near the clubhouse. (I didn't necessarily appreciate that when I signed up; I did play the course before doing the provisional membership) The staff seemed super friendly but never did try to pair me up with any regular members.

  • caniac6caniac6 Members Posts: 2,896 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    @d_macl said:

    @caniac6 said:
    You should have checked out the layout of the course before you joined. Also, the staff should have tried to pair you up with some guys. As a provisional member, they should have bent over backwards to make you feel welcome so you would become a regular member. Sounds like you joined the wrong club.

    I think it was valuable, in that I learned that I really like to be able to walk 9, and end up back near the clubhouse. (I didn't necessarily appreciate that when I signed up; I did play the course before doing the provisional membership) The staff seemed super friendly but never did try to pair me up with any regular members.

    I belonged to a private club for a couple years. They were really in financial trouble, and started to take some outside play. Thr pro refered to the non members as riff raff. I told him he should treat everyone that walked through the door as a member. I left the club to save some money when my son went to a private high school. The pro was fired. The club was bought by a wealthy member, and he made a lot of improvements, and the club is now doing well.

  • Hack DaddyHack Daddy Members Posts: 883 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Arb8889 said:
    Careful with club Corp, weird policies and less than stellar quality of employees. Have a nice sit down with the head pro where you can get all the answers you need

    The realest advice you'll get in the this thread regarding club corp...

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  • Bluefan75Bluefan75 Members Posts: 3,998 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    @d_macl said:
    " I have never understood joining a club if you do not want to join in with the club membership."
    Did a trial membership (6 mos) at a local club. Glad I only did a trial, as I learned about what would be a better fit. Was looking forward to meeting some golfing folks and a little friendly competition. Instead, all of the member tournaments/events required you to have a handicap. This required 20 x 18 hole rounds. My membership ended before I had established a handicap. I never ended up playing with any other members. Was never invited to play (maybe don't include people without handicaps in the results, or something?) ; was not what I expected at all. Was fun at times but overall an awkward isolating experience.
    Costs were about 500 bucks a month. I like to walk, but figured out that I didn't like walking that course, as the 9th hole was a couple miles from the clubhouse. Wasn't really designed for walkers, and realized that was important after carrying clubs a couple miles back to the car after 9. Fees were interesting, I guess typical. Cart fee was 30$ per person, so when I took my son we had to pay $60 for the cart. Never understood why you didn't pay for one cart. It'd be like renting a car, then having your passenger pay to rent the same one LOL. Standard in the golf industry I guess?
    I'll keep looking for a club that doesn't frown upon walking; a bonus would be allowing you to wear a hat in the clubhouse:)

    I find the handicap thing a bit odd. Don't you start to get a cap once you hit 5 scores? And then as more get added they start to take more? This doesn't make sense.
    Lots of other reasons it sounds like you dodged a bullet, but I think there was a miscommunication somewhere.

  • az2auaz2au Members Posts: 1,895 ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    @Bluefan75 said:

    @d_macl said:
    " I have never understood joining a club if you do not want to join in with the club membership."
    Did a trial membership (6 mos) at a local club. Glad I only did a trial, as I learned about what would be a better fit. Was looking forward to meeting some golfing folks and a little friendly competition. Instead, all of the member tournaments/events required you to have a handicap. This required 20 x 18 hole rounds. My membership ended before I had established a handicap. I never ended up playing with any other members. Was never invited to play (maybe don't include people without handicaps in the results, or something?) ; was not what I expected at all. Was fun at times but overall an awkward isolating experience.
    Costs were about 500 bucks a month. I like to walk, but figured out that I didn't like walking that course, as the 9th hole was a couple miles from the clubhouse. Wasn't really designed for walkers, and realized that was important after carrying clubs a couple miles back to the car after 9. Fees were interesting, I guess typical. Cart fee was 30$ per person, so when I took my son we had to pay $60 for the cart. Never understood why you didn't pay for one cart. It'd be like renting a car, then having your passenger pay to rent the same one LOL. Standard in the golf industry I guess?
    I'll keep looking for a club that doesn't frown upon walking; a bonus would be allowing you to wear a hat in the clubhouse:)

    I find the handicap thing a bit odd. Don't you start to get a cap once you hit 5 scores? And then as more get added they start to take more? This doesn't make sense.
    Lots of other reasons it sounds like you dodged a bullet, but I think there was a miscommunication somewhere.

    You can also use rounds already played to populate it.

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