By: Sean McNerney
When news of the COVID-19 pandemic began to spread, the nation seemingly changed overnight. Golf courses along with every other business closed their doors and went into a temporary shutdown. Golf is a hobby that many would not want to live without. As more information about the virus came out, safety precautions to golf clubs were quickly added. These precautions allowed the golf industry to recover, and golfers were slowly able to grab their bags and get back on the links.
SUNY Brockport student Matt Williams says he has been feeling cabin fevor but recently has been able to get back on the golf course.
“I have been getting into golf more over the last few years, though I have never been more excited to get out on the course,” said Williams “Since i’m not playing any sports in college, I have quickly obtained golf as my favorite sport as well as the only sport I am playing on a consistent basis,” said Williams.
Many people have been feeling the same way as Williams. As the warm weather approaches many people will look to golf courses as their escape from home.
There were many changes to area golf courses at the start of COVID-19 according to Democrat and Chronicle. Players would not be allowed to rent push carts from golf courses forcing players to walk with their bags. This leaves players with one other option, to rent a golf cart. One new change to golf cart renting that was implemented is only one player is allowed in the cart at a time. These changes along with constant cleaning of equipment have been made to golf courses to keep people safe.
These changes have been updated as time goes on, the hope is that these changes will be lifted very soon and golfers can return to the course normally.
As the golf season approaches, courses are finishing up their spring cleanup and getting ready to reopen. The Clubhouse Manager at Pinewood Country Club Kris Rohloff is confident that this will be a popular season despite the COVID-19 guidelines.
“At Pinewood Country Club we are expecting a popular season similar to last year, though we are expecting this year to be much more normal,” said Rohloff . “We have worked hard to keep the course in normal condition so players will not see a difference in course quality,” said Rohloff.
SUNY Brockport student, Thomas Glinski, has also been itching to play golf. Glinski has been playing golf his whole life and is more ready than ever to get back on the links.
“I have been playing golf since I can remember and it has grown to be my favorite sport. I joined my high school team a few years ago and it was the best decision of my life,” said Glinski “SUNY Brockport unfortunately doesn’t have a golf team, but I am still very excited for the golf season that is just around the corner.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has not stopped players from continuing to play the sport they love. However Rohloff is required to implement some safety precautions to ensure safety among players.
“There has been some change to the way the course plays due to COVID-19,” said Rohloff. “We have implemented some regulation regarding touching the pins, as well as spreading out groups and making sure people are socially distant on the course.”
The golf industry was able to work around the pandemic and allow people to continue playing the sport. As the nation slowly gets back to normal, golfers hope the sport will continue to grow as it has during the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic.