2018 Lull is Inevitable
City Park, which in 10 months accounted for 45,912 of Denver Golf’s 2017 rounds, has closed until at least May 2019
While the juniors are maturing, Denver Golf is in for a year of decline that will extend into the first half of 2019. That’s because City Park, which in 10 months accounted for 45,912 of Denver Golf’s 2017 rounds, has closed until at least May 2019. It will reopen with a new, modern layout and practice areas, and a clubhouse designed to take in views of the city’s ever-changing skyline.
Many of City Park’s golfers have taken their business over to Overland Golf Course. But come Sept. 4, that course will close until at least Oct. 8 to prepare for, and then recover from, a Superfly music festival Sept. 14-16. No one knows for certain whether the post-concert grass will grow green enough to inspire golfers to return to the course in decent numbers in 2018.
Also in the fall, the popular nine-hole Harvard Gulch par-3 course will undergo irrigation work similar to what 92-year-old Wellshire Golf Course is slated to complete this spring. Wellshire has stayed open, at reduced rates, but mud and rerouting have kept the throngs at bay.
Kennedy Golf Course has kept up its three regulation nines and par-3 nine, but the 55-year-old complex needs a new clubhouse. Rethlake said that’s not in the immediate plan, but, he added, “We are looking at trying to do some work over there, deferred maintenance.” That way, he says, Denver Golf can hold off on the new construction until it can fund it without bonds and debt.
THE CITY PARK X FACTOR
Though 2018 may send Denver Golf customers off to courses in Lakewood, Westminster or the southern suburbs, 2019 might signal the start of a renaissance. The City Park design team includes Hal Irwin and Todd Schoeder, whose signature is on the stunning new nine at Durango’s Glacier Club. The pair collaborated to make that Mountain Course appeal to golfers of all levels, with guiding questions, Schoeder says:
Irwin and Schoeder also made the scenery an integral part of the experience. If they succeed in transforming City Park, which had aged rather grumpily, into a fun, playable course that offers expansive skyline-mountain views and, in the end, has a clubhouse where golfers want to linger, they may coax Denver Golf out of bed.