Good Sports: Makeover underway at Lemoore Golf Course

LEMOORE, Calif. (KFSN) -- A South Valley golf course that opened nearly a century ago with only nine holes is now getting an upgrade.

A management group based in Chowchilla recently took over the Lemoore course - and is promising to make it more playable, while keeping prices affordable.

New heat-resistant hybrid Bermuda greens were planted Monday as the Lemoore Golf course continues its nine-week-long makeover.

The course was shut down earlier this month to make way for a number of improvements.

"I saw this course for the first time two weeks ago and in those two weeks, I've seen night and day," said new head golf pro Tim Huber.

Sierra Golf Management recently entered a 15-year lease agreement with the City of Lemoore to take control of the municipal golf course.

Part of the deal calls for the new group to make an initial investment of $250,000 to bring the course up to date. None of the holes will change -- but the putting surfaces will all get a fresh new look, while crews are working to redesign the sand traps.

"Part of our lease agreement was that we were going to front-load major capital in the first two years. Thus, you see the greens, the bunkers, the irrigation work, the club house and all the capital improvement. The city would get more of a return in the later years," said Dan Bacci.

The course typically draws up to 45,000 rounds of golf annually but city officials admit it was a challenge to keep up with the rising costs in recent years.

Sierra Golf Chief Operating Officer Dan Bacci is excited for the future of the property and says green fees will remain affordable for local golfer.

"It's just going to be a nicer place to come out and play, and it's still going to be an affordable municipal course that it is for the residents of Lemoore and people that want to travel from Fresno and Visalia to come down and play," he said.

Management hopes to have the course ready to welcome back golfers by Labor Day weekend.
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