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Central Jersey - Young Professional Searching for New Club

 nyjets0326 ·  
nyjets0326nyjets0326  5WRX Points: 0Handicap: 17Members Posts: 5
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Hi all, long time reader, first time to post... Anyway, I am a current member of Glenwood Country Club in Old Bridge and it may just be the very best deal in golf. However, it is just that... golf. The country club is great but it's a very no frills kind of place. The golf course is a challenge to say the least and it's usually in good shape. Nothing manicured but way better than a municipal course. The practice facility is awesome (unlimited range balls) and the pace of play is literally unbeatable. I have shown up at 7am and waited 5 minutes on a Saturday multiple times. I have been able to record well under 3 hour rounds with a buddy on non peak times.



However... I want to start making connections and I feel Glenwood kind of lacks that. I want to start taking clients out for a round. Not saying I can't do that at Glenwood, but it would be nice to really "wow" them. I love the people and love the staff but it's very blue collar. I do not have anything against that, as I wish I took up a trade instead of going the sales route but I recently toured Beacon Hill and was absolutely overwhelmed by the "welcomingness" of the members and felt that connections made here would last a life time. That being said, that's what I am hoping to get out of another country club. I just can't justify paying more than $4K/year for golf. I know this sounds stupid and cheap, and yes I am. But that's what I am looking for - a junior membership (32 years old) with a nice country club feel to it. I am touring Jumping Brook in a couple of weeks and that seems to be very much in the price range - $3K/year.



I heard good things about Forsgate ($4K), Forest Hill and especially Battleground... Any input would be much appreciated!
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  • Bonneville85308Bonneville85308  1800WRX Points: 218Members Posts: 1,800
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    Sounds like you have a great thing going...good course, low membership cost, fast rounds/not crowded, etc. I’d stick with it.



    I am going to take a devils advocate position and say that if I were your client, taking me to the other clubs you mentioned would not impress me any more than Glenwood. Take me to Plainfield or Baltusrol, then I will be impressed.



    My own observation working in a large publicly traded company is that “client golf” is mostly a thing of the past unless you are in financial services trying to woo a client or potential client with a whale sized portfolio. The supply chain guys at my company aren’t playing golf with the widget salesmen anymore. I’d carefully consider how often you would really use the club for this purpose. Also, I am open to making new friends with any fellow club member, but the first time you try to sell me something or try to make me your client, I am going to distance myself.
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  • nyjets0326nyjets0326  5WRX Points: 0Handicap: 17Members Posts: 5
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    That's a great answer, thank you! I also definitely appreciate the client advice. What about the connections piece though? I was at Beacon for a tour and one of the members playing with me was asking if I was happy with my current role and if I'd consider leaving... It's things like this that really intrigued me about a more (don't judge me) affluent club. Maybe I'm getting some crazy jaded caddyshack view of what actually happens around these clubs but that's what I'm not seeing at Glenwood.
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  • Z1ggy16Z1ggy16  8740WRX Points: 1,113Members Posts: 8,740
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    $4k going to be tough to beat. I hear NJ National is around $6k dues (unsure on bond) and Echo Lake is around $13k dues (I hear around $20k bond). I also don't know if NJN has a pool/tennis/other activities, but I do think it has a nice restaurant. Echo I think also has sister clubs, but I don't know which ones and any rules or stipulations around it.



    Honestly, I'd stick with what you've got for the reasons the guy above me states. I've played Neshanic (really nice public, you probably know that though) and Echo Lake really wasn't that much nicer. The greens were a bit more true and fast, but the scenery, the fairways and hole layouts themselves were all about the same. $4k for unlimited golf at a course on par with Neshanic or better with no waiting at all...I'd lock that in for as long as I could.
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  • mtokashmtokash  2WRX Points: 5Handicap: 18Members Posts: 2
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    As a 30 year old bogey golfer in Central Jersey, I've always been interested in Glenwood. What you mentioned above (Blue Collar, lack of connections, only golf) is what I was kind of expecting with it though. Might be worth checking out as a starter though since you rave about it.



    I've been lucky enough to play Forsgate a couple times and have attended a few events held there. Great space, fun courses, seemed a little stuffy though which might be the vibe you're looking for. In my limited time there it seemed like an older crowd.



    Good luck on your search, and J-E-T-S Jets Jets Jets!
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  • JagpilotohioJagpilotohio 45+ inch drivers are evil. Columbus, OH 7267WRX Points: 566Handicap: 1.8Members Posts: 7,267
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    nyjets0326 wrote:


    That's a great answer, thank you! I also definitely appreciate the client advice. What about the connections piece though? I was at Beacon for a tour and one of the members playing with me was asking if I was happy with my current role and if I'd consider leaving... It's things like this that really intrigued me about a more (don't judge me) affluent club. Maybe I'm getting some crazy jaded caddyshack view of what actually happens around these clubs but that's what I'm not seeing at Glenwood.




    You want to join a more “affluent” club and your total budget is $4000 a year for Golf and you’re admittedly cheap?? Good luck with that.
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  • Wander BreadWander Bread  81WRX Points: 35Handicap: 4.2Members Posts: 81
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    I have a few buddies that are junior members at both Forest Hill Field Club and Upper Montclair (under 40) and they really like it. Upper Montclair definitely going to be above 4k a year all in though. Forest Hill Field Club may be doable.
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  • mmckee02mmckee02  291WRX Points: 87Handicap: 3Members Posts: 291
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    Not sure of the current dues at Forsgate, but they have some of the best template greens around. I would suggest looking into it!



    MM
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  • nyjets0326nyjets0326  5WRX Points: 0Handicap: 17Members Posts: 5
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    I am going to tour Forsgate very soon looks to be about $4,000/year all said and done jumping brook will be around $3K, I appreciate all the input! Mtokash, shoot me a PM and I'd be more than happy to have you play Glenwood with me!!! Jag, yeah I said I'm cheap man, but thanks for pointing out the obvious!



    Anyone have any experience with Jumping Brook or Battleground? I'm playing Jumping Brook next weekend but I can't get anyone to call me back or give me any info about Battleground.
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  • nyjets0326nyjets0326  5WRX Points: 0Handicap: 17Members Posts: 5
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    Thanks Newbie, I will definitely check them out!
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  • Twism86Twism86  454WRX Points: 79Members Posts: 454
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    Just saw this thread and wish I lived closer to Glenwood! As im 32 as well I would join in a heartbeat for those prices. No frills, has a range and can grab some food is my kind of "CC." Would love to be able to just show up, hit a few balls and play whenever I wanted. The more social aspect of other clubs, with a pool and area to hang out are nice as well.
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  • DougNJDougNJ  224WRX Points: 77Handicap: 4.4Members Posts: 224
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    nyjets0326 wrote:


    I am going to tour Forsgate very soon looks to be about $4,000/year all said and done jumping brook will be around $3K, I appreciate all the input! Mtokash, shoot me a PM and I'd be more than happy to have you play Glenwood with me!!! Jag, yeah I said I'm cheap man, but thanks for pointing out the obvious!



    Anyone have any experience with Jumping Brook or Battleground? I'm playing Jumping Brook next weekend but I can't get anyone to call me back or give me any info about Battleground.




    My Dad is a member at Jumping Brook and I play there from time to time. It’s a fun course that has small greens. It’s a fun club. It’s not really a country club though. Central Jersey for that amount will be tough to get what you want. I’m at another club locally and we have a jr membership, it’s just golf though and I don’t think it’s around that numbers.
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  • NJgolfer11NJgolfer11  161WRX Points: 82Handicap: 8Members Posts: 161
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    nyjets0326 wrote:


    Hi all, long time reader, first time to post... Anyway, I am a current member of Glenwood Country Club in Old Bridge and it may just be the very best deal in golf. However, it is just that... golf. The country club is great but it's a very no frills kind of place. The golf course is a challenge to say the least and it's usually in good shape. Nothing manicured but way better than a municipal course. The practice facility is awesome (unlimited range balls) and the pace of play is literally unbeatable. I have shown up at 7am and waited 5 minutes on a Saturday multiple times. I have been able to record well under 3 hour rounds with a buddy on non peak times.



    However... I want to start making connections and I feel Glenwood kind of lacks that. I want to start taking clients out for a round. Not saying I can't do that at Glenwood, but it would be nice to really "wow" them. I love the people and love the staff but it's very blue collar. I do not have anything against that, as I wish I took up a trade instead of going the sales route but I recently toured Beacon Hill and was absolutely overwhelmed by the "welcomingness" of the members and felt that connections made here would last a life time. That being said, that's what I am hoping to get out of another country club. I just can't justify paying more than $4K/year for golf. I know this sounds stupid and cheap, and yes I am. But that's what I am looking for - a junior membership (32 years old) with a nice country club feel to it. I am touring Jumping Brook in a couple of weeks and that seems to be very much in the price range - $3K/year.



    I heard good things about Forsgate ($4K), Forest Hill and especially Battleground... Any input would be much appreciated!




    I agree that Glenwood is a "blue collar" club. I played there and for the money it is tough to beat if you are looking for golf only. The clubhouse though has a VFW feel and look.



    I agree with you on Beacon HIll. It is a wonderful club and an awesome clubhouse. A shorter course but if you do not hit it straight, it is a struggle. If your budget is $4k, it is not going to work, unless you worked out an amazing deal.



    Forsgate is an excellent club with 2 courses. I have only played the Banks course and love it. They had a Palmer only membership for under $4k a few years ago, but I do not know anything about that course.



    I live in Monmouth County and IMO, Jumping Brook is the most challenging private club and yes, more challenging than Hollywood. The greens at JB are extremely fast and tough. If you go past the pin on the first hole by a few feet, you could 3 putt. I am not a huge fan of the club, however, for your budget that could work for dues.



    New Jersey National was mentioned and I could not agree more. It may be the best deal in North Jersey for a private club. Beautiful course, large driving range and friendly atmosphere. You can walk anytime at no additional charge. The restaurant is open to the public but if that does not bother you go for it.



    Also, remember that dues does not include carts, caddies, food/beverage, assessments (if any).



    Where do you currently reside in NJ because that will be a factor with travel? I have played over 80 courses in NJ, with about half being private. I am more than happy to assist if you have any questions.
    Posted:
  • ButterCutter2ButterCutter2 NYC 338WRX Points: 95Handicap: 4Members Posts: 338
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    if you can get access to the banks course at forsgate for 4k a year, that is a steal that tony soprano would really approve of. jumping brook is okay, but it's no forsgate. the banks course is a real gem.
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  • NJgolfer11NJgolfer11  161WRX Points: 82Handicap: 8Members Posts: 161
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    nyjets0326 wrote:


    I am going to tour Forsgate very soon looks to be about $4,000/year all said and done jumping brook will be around $3K, I appreciate all the input! Mtokash, shoot me a PM and I'd be more than happy to have you play Glenwood with me!!! Jag, yeah I said I'm cheap man, but thanks for pointing out the obvious!



    Anyone have any experience with Jumping Brook or Battleground? I'm playing Jumping Brook next weekend but I can't get anyone to call me back or give me any info about Battleground.




    Battleground is excellent. I played it a few years ago and the course was in excellent shape. It is challenging and fun at the same time. The members I met could not have been any nicer.



    They offer memberships for just golf and one that combines golf/pool, etc.



    I liked it better over Jumping Brook.



    Between there and Forsgate, I would probably choose Battleground but you can go wrong with either place.



    Good luck in your search!
    Posted:
  • ButterCutter2ButterCutter2 NYC 338WRX Points: 95Handicap: 4Members Posts: 338
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    i understand that golf course architecture is subjective, but for the life of me, i struggle to understand how one would prefer a 1960s hal purdy layout, even if redone 15 years ago by robert mcneill who has a good but not great renovation portfolio, to the 18 holes that are the banks course at forsgate. i totally concede the palmer course at forsgate stinks, but the banks track with its template holes is an architectural gem. charles banks got his start in the biz working for macdonald and raynor, and then at times working with just raynor to do courses. hard to find a better architectual lineage than that. if cost is the same and course quality matters, forsgate cant be beat. i found the place welcoming with a country club feel and a lot of kids running around, but again it gets back to those **** 18 holes put together by charles banks.
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  • BRS2014BRS2014 Respect the game  320WRX Points: 0Members Posts: 320
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    bnr204 wrote:


    i understand that golf course architecture is subjective, but for the life of me, i struggle to understand how one would prefer a 1960s hal purdy layout, even if redone 15 years ago by robert mcneill who has a good but not great renovation portfolio, to the 18 holes that are the banks course at forsgate. i totally concede the palmer course at forsgate stinks, but the banks track with its template holes is an architectural gem. charles banks got his start in the biz working for macdonald and raynor, and then at times working with just raynor to do courses. hard to find a better architectual lineage than that. if cost is the same and course quality matters, forsgate cant be beat. i found the place welcoming with a country club feel and a lot of kids running around, but again it gets back to those **** 18 holes put together by charles banks.




    The Palmer Course is a Hal Purdy Course redone by Palmer.



    OP- what did you find?



    FYI - 2 years ago Battleground (Another Hal Purdy Course) was $6k plus carts for your membership. If your budget is $4k all in, you probably should look to stay at Glenwood until you want to spend over that amount. As a former member of Glenwood, you can’t beat it on value and accessibility. The conditions leave much to be desired! I think you’re better off at the Monmouth County courses if conditions matter to you.



    You aren’t going to find a course with the “amenities” you desire without approaching 10k+ all in.
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  • ButterCutter2ButterCutter2 NYC 338WRX Points: 95Handicap: 4Members Posts: 338
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    On -, @brs2014, i was comparing battleground (hal purdy) to the banks course at forsgate.
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  • BRS2014BRS2014 Respect the game  320WRX Points: 0Members Posts: 320
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    No comparison as far as golf courses go. Forsgate 100%



    Fun fact about Battleground is that Jim Nantz used to work there.

    In my opinion a few of the holes 10-12 don’t fit the property.
    Posted:
  • gmoneygmoney  381WRX Points: 73Members Posts: 381
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    BRS2014 wrote:


    No comparison as far as golf courses go. Forsgate 100%



    Fun fact about Battleground is that Jim Nantz used to work there.

    In my opinion a few of the holes 10-12 don’t fit the property.




    I agree,



    The reason they don't fit the property because they sold off that land on the other side of the entrance drive to build homes. Not uncommon theses days. They new holes are definitely awkward and not at all like the original layout and feel..



    It's just an ok place..
    Posted:
  • dpb5031dpb5031 Jupiter, FL 5710WRX Points: 1,219Members Posts: 5,710
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    Old York may be a good option if you dont mind commuting a bit further down the TPK (Int.7).



    The course is better than Battleground and/or Forsgate plus they have great deals for "young execs" (under 40). There are several welcoming men's groups with a bunch of really good guys and a good game.
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  • BRS2014BRS2014 Respect the game  320WRX Points: 0Members Posts: 320
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    dpb5031 wrote:


    Old York may be a good option if you dont mind commuting a bit further down the TPK (Int.7).



    The course is better than Battleground and/or Forsgate plus they have great deals for "young execs" (under 40). There are several welcoming men's groups with a bunch of really good guys and a good game.




    Old York is trash! Quirky course with poor drainage!

    They sent a few groups over to Forsgate a few weeks ago because they were under water!

    Just one man's opinion with some facts sprinkled in image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />
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  • ButterCutter2ButterCutter2 NYC 338WRX Points: 95Handicap: 4Members Posts: 338
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    there's likely someone on this board who's a member of old york, so calling it trash wouldn't be very kind. i've never played old york, but it would stun me if a modern gary player course (old york) is better than forsgate banks...banks course portfolio is small but special.
    Posted:
  • BRS2014BRS2014 Respect the game  320WRX Points: 0Members Posts: 320
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    bnr204 wrote:


    there's likely someone on this board who's a member of old york, so calling it trash wouldn't be very kind. i've never played old york, but it would stun me if a modern gary player course (old york) is better than forsgate banks...banks course portfolio is small but special.




    Ok, but it is trash. image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />
    Posted:
  • dpb5031dpb5031 Jupiter, FL 5710WRX Points: 1,219Members Posts: 5,710
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    BRS2014 wrote:

    bnr204 wrote:


    there's likely someone on this board who's a member of old york, so calling it trash wouldn't be very kind. i've never played old york, but it would stun me if a modern gary player course (old york) is better than forsgate banks...banks course portfolio is small but special.




    Ok, but it is trash. image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />




    Well, I just moved out of state so I'm no longer an Old York member image/stop.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':stop:' /> but was for 24 years (since they first opened in 1994). I was also one of the guys who played Forsgate recently because OY's front 9 was closed after 3+ inches of rain. The creek that runs through the front 9 flows into the Delaware river which is still tidal in that area, so extraordinarily heavy rains (3 inches or more in one shot) can cause issues if it marries up with high tide in the river. Usually happens once or twice per season. It is true that the Banks course drains extraordinarily well.



    Back in the mid 90s OY was a Golf Digest Top 10 in the state and the design was a refresh of a layout that existed back in the 60s and 70s, not a Gary Player original. Old York has had plenty of members through the years come over from Forsgate and all find OY to be the more the challenging course. Preference in terms of design is entirely subjective. I enjoy the Banks course at Forsgate, but the Palmer course not so much. I've never gotten bored playing OY; I'm not so sure I'd be able to say the same with a steady dose of Forsgate. To each his own...
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  • mh8587mh8587  3WRX Points: 7Members Posts: 3
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    Hi All - I wanted to bump this thread as I'm in a similar situation to the OP. My wife and I moved to Westfield in late March, and we are looking at joining a nearby club. Echo Lake and Shackamaxon are the two closest that I'm aware of. Does anyone have any idea of cost for an under 40/junior membership?

    Thanks!

    Posted:
  • NJgolfer11NJgolfer11  161WRX Points: 82Handicap: 8Members Posts: 161
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    On -, @mh8587 said:

    Hi All - I wanted to bump this thread as I'm in a similar situation to the OP. My wife and I moved to Westfield in late March, and we are looking at joining a nearby club. Echo Lake and Shackamaxon are the two closest that I'm aware of. Does anyone have any idea of cost for an under 40/junior membership?

    Thanks!

    Shackamaxon will be a lot cheaper than Echo Lake. I am not sure what the initiation fees are now, but I remember Shack being under 10k and Echo Lake being around 45k, but that could have changed.

    Both courses offer golf, pool, dining, etc. Echo Lake is a much better course IMO.

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  • mh8587mh8587  3WRX Points: 7Members Posts: 3
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    On -, @NJgolfer11 said:

    On -, @mh8587 said:

    Hi All - I wanted to bump this thread as I'm in a similar situation to the OP. My wife and I moved to Westfield in late March, and we are looking at joining a nearby club. Echo Lake and Shackamaxon are the two closest that I'm aware of. Does anyone have any idea of cost for an under 40/junior membership?

    Thanks!

    Shackamaxon will be a lot cheaper than Echo Lake. I am not sure what the initiation fees are now, but I remember Shack being under 10k and Echo Lake being around 45k, but that could have changed.

    Both courses offer golf, pool, dining, etc. Echo Lake is a much better course IMO.

    Thanks! I also recently heard about Forest Hill Field Club in Bloomfield, about 25 minutes from where we live. They seem to have several membership levels, including a House membership that comes with 10 rounds/year, which might be a good start with a newborn.

    Posted:
  • easye732easye732  14WRX Points: 4Members Posts: 14
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    Anyone have a sense of what Deal runs (under 35 y/o)? It's minutes from my house, love the course and facilities, but thinking it may be out of reach for now.

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  • NJgolfer11NJgolfer11  161WRX Points: 82Handicap: 8Members Posts: 161
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    On -, @easye732 said:

    Anyone have a sense of what Deal runs (under 35 y/o)? It's minutes from my house, love the course and facilities, but thinking it may be out of reach for now.

    From what I recall, Deal was a $20k initiation fee. Under 35, the dues I want to say were about 5k or so, but that did not include caddies, carts, food/beverage.

    Posted:

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