Golf courses become more popular during COVID-19

By Justin Miller, Staff–

Unlike most sports, golf has been positively affected by COVID-19. With people having an increased amount of free time profits and sales have increased as more people give the outdoor sports a try.

Mark Hanson is the local director of the Professional Golfers Association (PGA) at the Davis Municipal Golf Course. Hanson says business has actually increased since COVID-19, “compared to 2019 profit numbers.” 

“The course has had to adapt to COVID-19 guidelines such as mask requirements and social distancing as best they can,” Hanson said. “For example, only one person can be in every cart. ” 

Hanson also had to raise the holes to keep people from touching inside. Staff also had to take away the sand rakes in the sand traps in order to make sure players stay safe.

With outdoor sports impossible for most people, golf has filled that void as an outdoor sport. Because of this demand has increased at local courses.

Hanson has adjusted to the increased demand and extra work with a price increase for the rates of the games and cart rentals.

West Sacramento resident Joe Adamson often practices golf at Antelope Greens, a golf course in Antelope, California. “I spend two to three times a week, about 2-3 hours at a time on either on the green or at the golf range. I do it because it’s the best time to get together with friends and do a little competition while having a good time,” Adamson said.

His bank account charges have increased a couple of hundred of dollars with his increase in play.

Michelle Salisbury is the varsity women’s golf coach at Davis High. She enjoys teaching golf and helping athletes work on their skills. With the new pandemic-influenced sports schedule, the team’s practice and competitions have been impacted. The golf team is normally in the fall season,  which starts in August and ends in November, but with the new seasons in place this year, the golf season now runs from March to May.

 “It is a much shorter season this year and will only be the center matches; we won’t do the twice weekly dual matches,” Salisbury said. 

The practices will be held at the Wildhorse Golf Course in Davis around three times a week. The main challenge they’re facing is that they are not able to get together and practice, or do fundraising for the team. Salisbury hopes to have a full women’s team of 10-12 students, but with seasons combined this year, the team she may be looking for more players. Salisbury has made adjustments like most school sports this year, but is curious about how the spring will turn out.

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