Although the SDGA women’s golf tournament is under way at the Brookings Country Club this weekend, on Monday crews will begin a six- to eight-week renovation of the Lake Campbell course. BCC photo
• Landscaping changes start Monday
BROOKINGS – Brookings Country Club is moving forward with plans to complete a major renovation of its lakeside golf course, club officials announced this week.
“The improvements are being made in an effort to increase membership and outside guest play by improving overall course conditions and making the golf course more enjoyable and more playable for a wider range of golfers,” said Tedd Evans, general manager of the country club.
According to golf course designer Kevin Norby of Herfort Norby Golf Course, a Chaska, Minn.-based firm, the club will start construction on Monday, Aug. 13, immediately after the South Dakota Women’s Amateur Championship Golf Tournament, which is being held this weekend.
The renovation project at Brookings Country Club is expected to take six to eight weeks to complete, so the improvements will be ready for play in the spring of 2013.
Evans said the course would remain open throughout the renovation.
“On weekends, all the holes will be open,” he noted, “but during the week we might have a hole or two closed or some temporary tees. No golfers will be greatly inconvenienced.”
Evans said the course typically sees activity into November.
Earlier this year, the club completed a six-month long-range master plan study intended to identify opportunities to improve the golf course and to assist in prioritizing the need for long-range improvements.
According to Norby, the study concluded that the club would benefit most from three items:
• the removal of some trees and the realignment of some fairways to restore the original playing corridors,
• the reconstruction of the existing sand bunkers; and
• the construction of new forward tees to make the course more enjoyable for women, seniors and beginning golfers.
Brookings Country Club was originally built in 1921 as a nine-hole golf course and was later expanded to 18 holes.
“Our goal in rebuilding the bunkers is to bring back some of the historic character which makes this course unique,” Norby said. “In doing so, we believe that we can make the course more attractive, more playable and easier to maintain.”
Evans noted that the bunkers will get a new, finer type of sand – specially imported from Ohio – that should make play more enjoyable.
Designer Norby said the Brookings course has many similarities to other courses built around the turn-of-the-century such as Westward Ho and Minnehaha in Sioux Falls and courses like Minnesota Valley and Midland Hills in Minneapolis.
“We hope that improving course conditioning and bringing back some of the unique historic character will attract new members and increase guest play from communities as far away as Sioux Falls and Watertown,” said Norby.
A registered landscape architect, Norby is a graduate of South Dakota State University and recently completed renovations at Elmwood Golf Course and Prairie Green Golf Course in Sioux Falls.
The Herfort Norby firm is also currently working with the City of Watertown on improvements at Cattail Crossing Golf Course.