In 2016, the Coyote Run Golf Course recorded 32,060 rounds of golf. It was a record-setting year.
It surpassed the previous record set in 2015 by 1,000 rounds, or 2.9 percent, said Tom Denklau, Coyote Run manager of operations. That year started with a slump because of a wet spring, but ended with 70-degree days in November.
This year, golfers got out on the course early. Good weather forced the Homewood-Flossmoor Park District to open the course March 8, nearly a week ahead of schedule.
Golfers were still on the course in early November when the temperatures were in the high 50s. The park district instituted reduced rates starting Nov. 1. The course officially shut down for the season on Dec. 5.
“The weekend of Nov. 5 and 6 saw 335 rounds, with 190 on Sunday, Nov. 6,” he said. “It was the highest number on a November day I have every been a part of in all my (24) years in the golf business.”
That high total for the weekend, and temperatures above average brought the total for November to 1,960 rounds, a 30.2 percent increase over November 2015, Denklau told the park board members.
Denklau credited online registrations for part of the increase this past golf season.
“The big change this year was posting more online specials by using dynamic pricing, which is a practice used in the airline and hotel industry,” he explained. “As the tee time demand increases, so does the price. By using this form of marketing and pricing strategy, we helped offset the reduction of outing rounds.”
Coyote Run Superintendent Dave Ward said having golfers still playing necessitated keeping the seasonal staff working weekends in November for the first time in the course’s history.
“Prior to closing, greens and tees were treated with a fungicide to protect the turf from the winter fungal disease of snow mold,” he said.
Crews also fertilized various parts of the course and aerated tees and collars.
“In anticipation of the 2017 golf season, over the next few months the ground staff will refurbish all of the grounds maintenance equipment, as well as the benches, ball washers, tee signs, etc.,” Ward reported to the park board.
“Staff will also remove the last four Emerald Ash Borer infested ash trees, as well as a few other large dead trees around the course,” he noted.