Golf courses around the island are feeling the effects of the recent rainy conditions at possibly the worst time of the year.
“February and March are the busiest times of the year for us. We feel bad especially for the tourists because some of them are here for a week and they can’t golf,” Kauai Lagoons Golf Course assistant operations manager Joe Goldman said.
Goldman also mentioned that they’ve been closed for about 10 days during the recent wet conditions.
“The days we’ve been open, it’s been cart paths only. It’s pretty disappointing. We had a few people ask us why we’re even open, when they’ve come back from playing,” Goldman said.
But according to Goldman, officials at Kauai Lagoons have been pretty liberal with rainchecks and refunds.
“We don’t discount our greens fees. We try to put up signs about the wetness and cart paths only. We do remind our golfers about the conditions,” Goldman said.
However, not only the golf course is feeling the effects of the weather.
“It’s hurt our revenues and merchandising. We sold a lot more weather-related gear in the last month, but our sales are down,” Goldman said.
Meanwhile, out on the North Shore, the Princeville Golf Course has only seen a few days of closure and some drop-offs in interest in heading out to golf.
“(There’s) no major damage to any part of the golf course. We just really need some sun,” Princeville Golf Course director of golf, Mike Castillo said.
Like everyone else though, the officials at Princeville just have to deal with the conditions.
“We can’t do much. Like all the other golf courses, we got some bunker issues, bunkering reconstruction, and just some cleaning of rivers and streams,” Castillo said.
“Once we get some sun, we’ll have to play catch-up. Golf courses here recover extremely quick, because there are not a lot of change of natural terrain. Give us a little bit of sunshine and we’ll be right back,” Castillo continued.
In the meantime, the Kiahuna Golf Course keeps on trucking despite the rain.
“Our crew has the golf course ready to play everyday, but the rain has prevented us from letting people play,” Kiahuna Golf Course director of golf, Ron Castillo said.
However, according to Castillo, 106 golfers came out to play on Wednesday, which is good news.
“We’ve closed for only two days. We’ve been hampered by the Waita Reservoir. We need to redo some of our bridges because of the overflow from the streams,” Castillo said.
“Our golf course is in good shape. We redid all of our bunkers and they are draining. We invested a lot of money in that,” Castillo continued.
Over at the Wailua Golf Course, Kaua’i’s only public facility, the puddling has over-flowed water hazards, letting loose Coy Fish around some tee boxes.
But some individuals don’t let the conditions get in the way of their golf games.
“There are some die-hards that still go out there. They come back all muddy, but they don’t mind it,” Goldman said.
- Duane Shimogawa Jr., sports editor, may be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 257) or firstname.lastname@example.org.