Golf courses

Golf courses continue to see record numbers as golf craze continues

The Breckenridge Golf Club sign is pictured April 29, 2020. The golf course continues to see record numbers in response to the pandemic.
Liz Copan Archive/Summit Daily News

With ski season upon us in Summit County and the depths of winter on the horizon, most local golf courses have closed for the season.

During the 2020 golf season, the country saw a 20% increase in demand for golf courses, largely due to people wanting to escape the strongholds of COVID-19 closures. The same interest in golf was reflected in Summit County during the 2020 season.

This summer, when the closures seem to be gone for good and the vaccine is allowing people to gather again, things haven’t slowed down for outdoor recreation in Summit County.

According to Scott Reid, Director of Recreation for the Town of Breckenridge, the Breckenridge Golf Club has seen even greater golf excitement than last year.

“Our numbers have gone up significantly in terms of laps,” Reid said. “We had a record number of rounds bought and played for the season at Breckenridge Golf Course.”

Other courses in Summit County have seen a similar trend, including the Keystone Resort’s River and Ranch courses.

“Golf courses across the country continued to see momentum from 2020, (and) this was also true for our two courses at Keystone,” Keystone Resort PGA Golf Director Philip Tobias wrote in an email. “We were delighted to offer full service offerings to both courts.”

Breckenridge Golf Club manager Patrick Clary said Sept. 10 that “COVID has given us the greatest opportunity in the world to socially distance from everyone and get outside.”

Reid and Clary noted that the pandemic golf craze has extended for an even bigger year in 2021. Reid there contributes to some of the best golf conditions Breckenridge Golf Club has ever seen.

“Our golf maintenance team did a fantastic job of getting the greens back in shape at the start of the season and continued to keep them in good condition despite the high number of rounds,” said Reid.

“Last year we were somewhat affected by the impact of ice on our greens, so we had difficulty charging lower rates for a while,” Reid said. “In 2021, the strong demand continued, but the conditions were much better.”

The only issue Breckenridge Golf Club had during the 2021 season was the availability of tee times due to increased demand.

Clary provides the new record numbers for people who still want to be outdoors and socializing while engaging in activity.

“We don’t expect golf demand to decline anytime soon, and we are actively taking bookings for the 2022 season,” Tobias said.