February 2017
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Welcome to the NWGMA

 

About the NWGMA
The Northwest Golf Media Association was founded in 1995 by and for people who write, edit, discuss, produce and otherwise impart golf-related articles, books, columns for newspapers, magazines, television, radio, internet, social media and all other forms of communication. The nonprofit organization was originated to assist in the collaboration of efforts of the working media who cover golf in the region.

The NWGMA seeks to bring attention to the region’s golf heritage, and it hopes everyone in the media gives golf equal status with other sports. It also strives to educate the community about all facets of the golf industry and what each entity brings to the game of golf. Its members facilitate this by creating a network among colleagues for sharing story ideas and creating a community for discussing and disseminating Northwest golf news.

NWGMA Mission Statement
The Northwest Golf Media Association shall focus on the best interests of the game of golf in the Pacific Northwest with the assistance of individuals in the Northwest golf media.


 

From the News Room

 


Feb. 13 -- Baseball and golf a good tandem for Dave Sims -- See Story

Feb. 4; Kalispel G&CC Recognized by Pacific Northwest Golfer Magazine

Par-3 17th hole selected as one of the ‘Great Holes of the Northwest’

 Federal Way, Wash. – In the February 2017 issue of Pacific Northwest Golfer magazine, the par-3 17th hole (pictured) at Kalispel Golf & Country Club in Spokane, Wash. is recognized as one of the “Great Holes of the Northwest,” one of just four holes selected each year by the Northwest’s largest and longest-running golf publication.

 There are 10 tee boxes on this downhill par-3, each giving varying lengths and angles into the green, so it is different each time you play the hole. With ponds fed by natural springs down the entire left side and bunkering protecting the front left edge of the green, any tee shot from the left tee boxes, although a shorter distance, has a very narrow margin for error and requires a carry all the way. The longer tee shots will be from the straightaway boxes, and will allow for shots to chase onto a small green that slopes away from you and usually sits in the shadows cast by Rattlesnake Ridge, looming behind the green.

 In December 2015, the Kalispel Tribe finalized their purchase of Spokane Country Club, and renamed the historic club the Kalispel Golf & Country Club. Founded in 1898, the country club has a deep, rich history in Spokane, and was the site of the first U.S. Women’s Open, in 1946 (won by the great Patty Berg). The club continues to host regional and national championships, as well as USGA national championship qualifiers, and will be the site of the 2017 WSGA Men’s and Senior Men’s Best-Ball Championships.

 The purchase of the 119-year-old club by the tribe has added to their business ventures, the most visible of which is the Northern Quest Resort & Casino. Amidst many impending changes, including a complete remodel of the restaurant, the course will remain primarily private, with various tee times available to the public on most days. Visit www.kalispelgolf.com for information.

 


Feb. 2: Women's Golf Day set for June 6 -- See info

 


Jan. 27: Premier Golf Making Major Improvements to Puget Sound-Area Public Courses

At the Jan. 26 NWGMA meeting, Premier Golf President Bill Schickler and Jefferson Park GM Bill Meyer talked about the improvements at Premier Golf facilities, including Bellevue Golf Course and most notably Jefferson Park, during the NWGMA's first meeting of the year, held on Jan. 26.

Schickler said Premier currently operates 15 golf courses at 13 facilities, with virtually all of the region’s municipal golf courses (save for Tacoma) being run by Premier Golf.

Schickler said they’ve recently added Lynnwood and Cedarcrest in Marysville, but as of April 1, 2017, they’ll be losing Fort Steilacoom and Lake Spanaway to Kemper Sports, which will run those facilities as well as Chambers Bay. That will leave Premier Golf with 11 managed facilities. Schickler said Premier’s Seattle-area courses brought in approximately $25 million in revenue and that included 600,000 rounds of golf in 2016, with significant recent improvements at Bellevue, Jackson Park and Jefferson Park.

The duo showed off its new clubhouse at Jefferson Park, which saw the demolition of the historic 100-year-old clubhouse in the fall of 2013. Construction on the new clubhouse took place from November 2013 until May 2015, and re-oriented the clubhouse so that the upstairs banquet room can face out onto the driving range and with views toward downtown Seattle.

The range at Jefferson now has 50 covered stalls, with 25 of them heated. Also part of the clubhouse is a new pro shop, office space for the First Tee of Seattle and the Beacon Grill Restaurant, which has seen a huge demand from high school reunion committees, which have filled up many summer weekends in the banquet room which can seat from 100-120 people inside and up to 200 when you include the outside patio space adjoining the banquet room.
There are also a half-dozen dedicated stalls that banquet room users can have participants hit balls at, as the range overlooks scenic downtown Seattle.

The Beacon Grill is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and smokes its own meats in-house, including turkey, pork, and yes, its own bacon). The Beacon Grill recently received commendation by Golf Digest for having the Best Golf Grub in America, no doubt because of its house-smoked bacon.

The Bellevue Golf Course driving range was constructed during the winter of 2015 and improved a small unlit range with a new double deck heated range with 46 stalls, included 23 covered and heated stalls and 23 heated stall. Because of its cantilevered design, the range is “hidden” from the view of most golfers and people who go into the Bellevue clubhouse. Bellevue’s range garners approximately $600,000 annually, which is just above the $500,000-600,000 generated at Jefferson, but well behind the $1 million-plus generated at Interbay for Premier Golf.

Jackson Park’s driving range was constructed in 2014 and also a double decker. The range was built on the site of the old 10th hole, with a new 10th hole constructed elsewhere on the property. That meant par at Jackson went down a stroke, but Schickler said they are looking at ways of getting that stroke back, most probably by lengthening a par-4 into a short par-5. The biggest benefit for Jackson Park patrons is the new 50-stall covered driving range, which also is big enough to allow regular-flight range balls to be used. Schickler said most of their facilities use the Srixon limited flight ball so that balls don’t clear facility nets and cause outside property damage.

Schickler said the company is doing very well, with Interbay, Bellevue and Legion Memorial its best revenue producers. The company has launched a highly successful mobile app, with over 50,000 downloads and also has a very successful Premier Club frequent player program, with over 100,000 people joining and more than 44,000 having earned Premier Club points in 2016. The company is also looking at starting a new texting club, with deals and info sent by text to members.

Schickler (pictured) said his company has also seen huge increases in their Lynnwood course because it exists in a rain shadow. While the entire area is under rain, Lynnwood will be relatively dry and open for business.

Schickler also said he’s toured TopGolf facilities in the United States and he sees them being in a different kind of business, with an emphasis on food and beverage, not golf. Schickler said the challenges for his business including getting more women and children involved, especially since last year was the first year they had trouble fully subscribing their junior camps.

Meyer then led a tour of the Jefferson Park facilities, showing off the par-3 course where 6-inch cups are being used and where foot golf is being played. Foot golf has generated decent revenues for Jefferson, with unexpected high numbers in ball rentals (foot golf uses regulation soccer balls). Premier Golf President Bill Schickler and Jefferson Park GM Bill Meyer talked about the improvements at Premier Golf facilities, including Bellevue Golf Course and most notably Jefferson Park.

Schickler said Premier currently operates 15 golf courses at 13 facilities, with virtually all of the region’s municipal golf courses (save for Tacoma) being run by Premier Golf.

Schickler said they’ve recently added Lynnwood and Cedarcrest in Marysville, but as of April 1, 2017, they’ll be losing Fort Steilacoom and Lake Spanaway to Kemper Sports, which will run those facilities as well as Chambers Bay. That will leave Premier Golf with 11 managed facilities. Schickler said Premier’s Seattle-area courses brought in approximately $25 million in revenue and that included 600,000 rounds of golf in 2016, with significant recent improvements at Bellevue, Jackson Park and Jefferson Park.

The duo showed off its new clubhouse at Jefferson Park, which saw the demolition of the historic 100-year-old clubhouse in the fall of 2013. Construction on the new clubhouse took place from November 2013 until May 2015, and re-oriented the clubhouse so that the upstairs banquet room can face out onto the driving range and with views toward downtown Seattle.

The range at Jefferson now has 50 covered stalls, with 25 of them heated. Also part of the clubhouse is a new pro shop, office space for the First Tee of Seattle and the Beacon Grill Restaurant, which has seen a huge demand from high school reunion committees, which have filled up many summer weekends in the banquet room which can seat from 100-120 people inside and up to 200 when you include the outside patio space adjoining the banquet room.
There are also a half-dozen dedicated stalls that banquet room users can have participants hit balls at, as the range overlooks scenic downtown Seattle.

The Beacon Grill is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and smokes its own meats in-house, including turkey, pork, and yes, its own bacon). The Beacon Grill recently received commendation by Golf Digest for having the Best Golf Grub in America, no doubt because of its house-smoked bacon.

The Bellevue Golf Course driving range was constructed during the winter of 2015 and improved a small unlit range with a new double deck heated range with 46 stalls, included 23 covered and heated stalls and 23 heated stall. Because of its cantilevered design, the range is “hidden” from the view of most golfers and people who go into the Bellevue clubhouse. Bellevue’s range garners approximately $600,000 annually, which is just above the $500,000-600,000 generated at Jefferson, but well behind the $1 million-plus generated at Interbay for Premier Golf.

Jackson Park’s driving range was constructed in 2014 and also a double decker. The range was built on the site of the old 10th hole, with a new 10th hole constructed elsewhere on the property. That meant par at Jackson went down a stroke, but Schickler said they are looking at ways of getting that stroke back, most probably by lengthening a par-4 into a short par-5. The biggest benefit for Jackson Park patrons is the new 50-stall covered driving range, which also is big enough to allow regular-flight range balls to be used. Schickler said most of their facilities use the Srixon limited flight ball so that balls don’t clear facility nets and cause outside property damage.

Schickler said the company is doing very well, with Interbay, Bellevue and Legion Memorial its best revenue producers. The company has launched a highly successful mobile app, with over 50,000 downloads and also has a very successful Premier Club frequent player program, with over 100,000 people joining and more than 44,000 having earned Premier Club points in 2016. The company is also looking at starting a new texting club, with deals and info sent by text to members.

Schickler said his company has also seen huge increases in their Lynnwood course because it exists in a rain shadow. While the entire area is under rain, Lynnwood will be relatively dry and open for business.

Schickler also said he’s toured TopGolf facilities in the United States and he sees them being in a different kind of business, with an emphasis on food and beverage, not golf. Schickler said the challenges for his business including getting more women and children involved, especially since last year was the first year they had trouble fully subscribing their junior camps.

Meyer (left) then led a tour of the Jefferson Park facilities, showing off the par-3 course where 6-inch cups are being used and where foot golf is being played. Foot golf has generated decent revenues for Jefferson, with unexpected high numbers in ball rentals (foot golf uses regulation soccer balls).Premier Golf President Bill Schickler and Jefferson Park GM Bill Meyer talked about the improvements at Premier Golf facilities, including Bellevue Golf Course and most notably Jefferson Park.

Schickler said Premier currently operates 15 golf courses at 13 facilities, with virtually all of the region’s municipal golf courses (save for Tacoma) being run by Premier Golf.

Schickler said they’ve recently added Lynnwood and Cedarcrest in Marysville, but as of April 1, 2017, they’ll be losing Fort Steilacoom and Lake Spanaway to Kemper Sports, which will run those facilities as well as Chambers Bay. That will leave Premier Golf with 11 managed facilities. Schickler said Premier’s Seattle-area courses brought in approximately $25 million in revenue and that included 600,000 rounds of golf in 2016, with significant recent improvements at Bellevue, Jackson Park and Jefferson Park.

The duo showed off its new clubhouse at Jefferson Park, which saw the demolition of the historic 100-year-old clubhouse in the fall of 2013. Construction on the new clubhouse took place from November 2013 until May 2015, and re-oriented the clubhouse so that the upstairs banquet room can face out onto the driving range and with views toward downtown Seattle.

The range at Jefferson now has 50 covered stalls, with 25 of them heated. Also part of the clubhouse is a new pro shop, office space for the First Tee of Seattle and the Beacon Grill Restaurant, which has seen a huge demand from high school reunion committees, which have filled up many summer weekends in the banquet room which can seat from 100-120 people inside and up to 200 when you include the outside patio space adjoining the banquet room.
There are also a half-dozen dedicated stalls that banquet room users can have participants hit balls at, as the range overlooks scenic downtown Seattle.

The Beacon Grill is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and smokes its own meats in-house, including turkey, pork, and yes, its own bacon). The Beacon Grill recently received commendation by Golf Digest for having the Best Golf Grub in America, no doubt because of its house-smoked bacon.

The Bellevue Golf Course driving range was constructed during the winter of 2015 and improved a small unlit range with a new double deck heated range with 46 stalls, included 23 covered and heated stalls and 23 heated stall. Because of its cantilevered design, the range is “hidden” from the view of most golfers and people who go into the Bellevue clubhouse. Bellevue’s range garners approximately $600,000 annually, which is just above the $500,000-600,000 generated at Jefferson, but well behind the $1 million-plus generated at Interbay for Premier Golf.

Jackson Park’s driving range was constructed in 2014 and also a double decker. The range was built on the site of the old 10th hole, with a new 10th hole constructed elsewhere on the property. That meant par at Jackson went down a stroke, but Schickler said they are looking at ways of getting that stroke back, most probably by lengthening a par-4 into a short par-5. The biggest benefit for Jackson Park patrons is the new 50-stall covered driving range, which also is big enough to allow regular-flight range balls to be used. Schickler said most of their facilities use the Srixon limited flight ball so that balls don’t clear facility nets and cause outside property damage.

Schickler said the company is doing very well, with Interbay, Bellevue and Legion Memorial its best revenue producers. The company has launched a highly successful mobile app, with over 50,000 downloads and also has a very successful Premier Club frequent player program, with over 100,000 people joining and more than 44,000 having earned Premier Club points in 2016. The company is also looking at starting a new texting club, with deals and info sent by text to members.

Schickler said his company has also seen huge increases in their Lynnwood course because it exists in a rain shadow. While the entire area is under rain, Lynnwood will be relatively dry and open for business.

Schickler also said he’s toured TopGolf facilities in the United States and he sees them being in a different kind of business, with an emphasis on food and beverage, not golf. Schickler said the challenges for his business including getting more women and children involved, especially since last year was the first year they had trouble fully subscribing their junior camps.

Meyer then led a tour of the Jefferson Park facilities, showing off the par-3 course where 6-inch cups are being used and where foot golf is being played. Foot golf has generated decent revenues for Jefferson, with unexpected high numbers in ball rentals (foot golf uses regulation soccer balls).

​Submitted by Alfie Lau