May 2024 Industry Report

This year, 10,052 entries (third highest in history) have been accepted by the USGA for the 2024 U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2. Local qualifiers will take place through May 20th. The youngest entrant this year is a 12-year-old from Houston, Texas and the oldest amateur is 74-year-old from Ellensburg, Washington.

A Warm Winter

According to the National Golf Foundation, February rounds were up about 5% nationally compared to a year ago, aided in part by one of the warmest Februarys on record in parts of the upper Midwest. However, through the first two months of 2024, U.S. rounds of golf are running about 5% behind last year’s pace.

First Golf Experience

The average cost of playing at a municipal golf course is 8% less than playing a non-resort daily fee facility. More than 70% of all golfers (including private club members) report having some of their first golf experiences at a municipal golf course.

GolfPass Under Fire

Few are aware Facebook’s “Pixel” tracking software allows the company to track your habits. Now GolfPass (partially owned by NBC) faces a class action lawsuit for apparently failing to disable Pixel software and sharing its information with Facebook. The lawsuit’s premise: “The surreptitious disclosure of subscribers’ personally identifiable information is a violation of the Video Privacy Protection Act voted into law when renting a DVD at Blockbuster was commonplace.”

Supply/Demand Equation

Since the golf course supply/demand correction began 18 years ago…

– Net increase in municipal golf courses: + 5%

– Net decrease in private golf courses: – 14%

– Net decrease in daily fee golf courses: – 17%