Courses that don’t disclose bad conditions or punched greens are ripping off their customers

Written by: Tony Korologos | Thursday, September 22nd, 2011
Categories: BoneheadsGolf Courses

Time for a serious rant about a golf course here I played today.  Davis Park Golf Course, north of Salt Lake City up in Davis County, is normally a fantastic course with a great layout and conditions.  The greens are usually excellent.  So my Thursday group of four guys decided to take the hour long drive up there and play it our one time per year that we usually do.  I was responsible for booking the time, called the Davis pro shop TUESDAY and booked a 10:30am tee time for today, Thursday.

When my approach shot on #1 hit the green I saw sand splash up.  I looked at my buddy and we knew what that meant.  The greens had been punched and sanded.  Now I understand that course maintenance and punching may be necessary, but there was no warning on the phone, no sign at the pro shop, no mention by the people behind the counter.  These greens are AWFUL.  They’re so slow and bumpy that trying to make even a two foot putt is not even a 50/50 chance.  My first putt of 10 feet, came up 5 feet short.  The greens at this course were running at probably less than a 5 on the stimpmeter.

This is NOT fun golf and it is total chicken sh*t that this course didn’t disclose the conditions.  Had our group known, we would have gone somewhere else.  Of all the aspects of golf, I enjoy the putting component the most.  This is where I’m the best and where my advantage is over my opponents.  I couldn’t enjoy the round and couldn’t take advantage of my strength.  We would have left to play somewhere else, but one player had a time commitment which prevented us from doing that.

Customer Non Service

I mentioned to the youngster in the pro shop that it would have been great if they disclosed the punching of the greens when I called and talked to them.  He said “sometimes people in the pro shop don’t know.”  Really?  Turn around and look at the freaking 9th and 18th greens.  They’re 20 feet from your window.   I mentioned that they should post a sign or warning that the greens were punched, and he said that wasn’t regular policy.   That is a poor non policy if you ask me.

How It SHOULD Be Done

My home course River Oaks is GREAT with these situations.  They actually post a sign on the clubhouse and range shop entrances several weeks prior to punching, warning the clients.  The week or so after the punch, the course posts signs to let the patrons know about the punched greens and offers a very deeply discounted rate.  That is how it should be done.


11 responses to “Courses that don’t disclose bad conditions or punched greens are ripping off their customers”

  1. Pat O'Neal says:

    I couldn’t agree more. We vacationed at Myrtle Beach a couple of weeks ago and had the same experience at a “recommended” course. Fortunately, they refunded our fees and booked us at a sister course that wasn’t punched.

    When in southern California, make sure to check for current course conditions. Their motto is “Know Before You Go!”. GK puts a lot of effort into making sure their website is up to date with aeration activities. It is also a very nice golf community with a great forum.


  2. Ryan Garland says:

    I’m on board with this. For most of us we don’t have a ton of time to devote to golf, and when we do, we hope for a great experience. Showing up at a course we expect to be as good as last time, only to find it has totally been neglected sucks! Courses should not only be more open about this, but they should offer an adjustment in greens fees.


  3. Patrick says:

    Not very good customer service if the courses do this.

  4. WILLIAM BYRD says:

    A course in MBeach, gave us a discount, because they had aerated the greens 2 days before. Just played last week at a city course, nothing was said. There was more sand in the green side bunkers. They wonder why the game is lacking in new players, how about some respect to my hard earned money. How about discounts on aerated greens, very hot days. Courses should be growing the game.

  5. michael-ex-Navy says:

    I always ask course conditions when I’m making a tee time. Have the greens been aerated? Course in good condiition?Any temporary greens? If he hesitates make your tee time somewhere else?

  6. Yes William. A very good policy, which I should have implemented prior…

  7. Mark says:

    In Sacramento most of the courses cooperate with the local newspaper (The Sacramento Bee). They submit their maintenance schedules and they get published.

  8. Legalbgl says:

    Couldn’t agree more. I play mostly the municipal courses in our county and they are generally in great condition. When they punch and airate they not only post at the clubhouse, they post online, and when you make reservations on-line, a warning message comes up letting you know.

  9. DHutch says:

    You had to wait to get to the first hole to notice? You’re blind! The 9th and 18th green are less than 20 feet from the pro shop. If it was that crappy, you should’ve noticed, quit after the 1st hole and gone up the road to Valley View or Lakeside.

  10. Thanks for the comments on my eye sight DHutch. Honestly I didn’t go near the 18th, which is around back. I didn’t look at the green on 9 either as I was more interested in getting my gear out of the car, going in to the shop, paying for the round, and getting to the first tee.

    We would have left and gladly gone to Valley View or Wingpointe, but one guy in our group was under a time constraint.

  11. Also, whether or not I saw the 9th or 18th greens isn’t the point. The point is that the course should disclose the conditions like my home course River Oaks does. They mention on the phone when you book the tee times that the greens are punched. They post signs on the windows saying they’re punched. They offer a discount.





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