Streamsong Red 9
August 2020 Industry Report

Although we all have been preoccupied with implementing Covid-19 operational changes, it’s essential we don’t take our “eye off the ball” on non-pandemic management issues.

Current litigation against Silverleaf Club in Arizona carries an important lesson. Last year, the club terminated the membership of a family for “repeated acts of misconduct.” The family sued the club to recover their $100,000 membership deposit made a decade ago.

Two words – recalled and/or terminated – in Silverleaf’s membership contract will determine the outcome.

If the family’s membership was recalled, Silverleaf’s membership documents state a full refund of the $100,000 membership deposit must be paid within 30 days.

If the family’s membership was terminated, the club is not required to refund any membership deposits.

The court’s decision: “There are too many missing pieces and unsettled issues to grant the plaintiff judgement.” Thus, handing Silverleaf a victory for now.  The lesson learned? When was the last time you reviewed membership contracts? Is all wording clear and unambiguous?

Golf in the Covid-19 World

A couple of interesting data points to ponder, courtesy of the National Golf Foundation:

Entering July, over 98% of U.S. golf courses were open for play. In early April, only 44% were open due to the coronavirus, seasonality, or a combination of the two.

– Safe distancing back on the upswing for golfers. The latest physical distancing findings suggest 80% of golfers wouldn't be willing to share a golf cart with anyone, including friends, from outside their home.

– More than half of golfers (53%) now say they prefer to remain a minimum of six feet away from anyone they don't live with.

– Revisiting the financial outlook of golfers: There's been a 6% jump in the number of golfers who have a worse financial outlook than a month ago, but the percentage of those showing serious financial vulnerability is still significantly less than in April. Not surprisingly, anxiety about the virus, however, has risen to its highest level in two months as the number of cases nationwide continues to escalate.

Caddyshack turns 40

This month marked the 40th anniversary of the movie Caddyshack. Made for $6 million, it grossed $40 million at the box office. On course golf scenes were filmed at Rolling Hills Golf Club in South Florida (now renamed Grande Oaks). Interesting trivia – during the famous scene when Bill Murray blew up gopher holes with dynamite, producers brought in tons of dirt and built a hill on the 18th hole because the club didn’t want the actual course to be damaged. Pyrotechnic crew ended up using too many explosives and decimated the makeshift hill. The explosions were so big, pilots on final approach into Fort Lauderdale Airport reported it to air traffic control.

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