Another Golf Course Closes

Owning $1.1-million, Owen Sound G&CC's debt has overwhelmed the club.

This time it is Owen Sound Golf and Country Club, three hours north-west of Toronto. Apparently there was a big debt problem:

OSGCC president Bob Nicol said on Tuesday that the 90- year-old Stanley Thompson course owes the Bank of Montreal $1.1 million. By closing on Tuesday, it should be able to issue final paycheques to its 40 employees and pay off its suppliers.

“We’re out of money,” Nicol said. “We can’t pay our bills if we keep going. This is more than just a golf course. It’s a 90-year-old community institution.”

The decision to close the course was made last week but it wasn’t closed until Tuesday.

Members are apparently out of luck when it comes to getting any money back — since there isn’t any. This can’t bode well for other courses in the area, unless it is just a case of mismanagement. Sounds like an aging membership was a factor as well:

Nicol hopes an investor will buy the club, preferably before it has a chance to become overgrown.

“We’ll need someone to step up and strike a deal with the bank,” he said. “If you let a course go too long, it becomes a field and it’s worthless as a golf course any longer. I’ve been told by experts that if you had to rebuild this course it would cost more than $5 million.”

Nicol said the club installed an irrigation and drainage system approximately seven years ago. That was the beginning of the club borrowing money from the bank to help cover expenses.

“That’s when we started to see our membership start to deteriorate and our costs go up,” noted Nicol.

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Robert Thompson

A bestselling author and award-winning columnist, Robert Thompson has been writing about business and sports, and particularly golf, for almost two decades. His reporting and commentary on golf has appeared in Golf Magazine, the Globe and Mail, T&L Golf and many other media outlets. Currently Robert is a columnist with Global Golf Post, golf analyst for Global News and Shaw Communications, and Senior Writer to ScoreGolf. The Going for the Green blog was launched in 2004.

5 CommentsLeave a comment

  • This is more bad news. I just drove by Talisman Mountain Resort – totally abandoned since March. The greens are overgrown and the pond is scummy. It looks like something out of the Shining. spooky.

  • The 5th through 7th are a great set of holes. The course is pretty good in places, I certainly enjoyed my time there.

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