Despite a series of attempts to turn BREC’s financial bogies into birdies, six of the park system’s seven courses lost money last year. (Photo by Jeannie Frey Rhodes)
The next time your drive past Webb Memorial Golf Course—or tee up a drive there—take a look at how many golfers are on the course and consider this: Every single person carting around a bag of clubs is costing BREC $12.23 per round. Think that’s bad then don’t bother doing the math at Dumas Memorial, where BREC loses $51.33 per round played. That’s according to a breakdown of revenues and expenses at BREC golf courses from 2016, which was an especially difficult year due to the August flood.
BREC has been making moves to bring down its losses on golf in recent years, including repurposing one course, and introducing alcohol sales and foot golf at others. “The National Golf Foundation report said BREC was running its golf courses under a parks model, as opposed to a business model, and they were maintaining them kind of like you maintain parks,” says BREC Golf Director Mike Raby. “Since I came we’ve been maintaining them like you maintain a business. Proper mowing. Upgrading equipment. Better maintenance. We’re not there yet but we feel very positive. We’re a ways away from self-sustaining but that’s my long-term goal.”