Golf is among the activities that have been on-again, off-again, on-again, thanks to COVID.
People in Eunice who use the Eunice Municipal Golf Course like it as an escape, as recreation.
In 2021, though, it may cost some of those people more to get that escape, that recreation, as the Eunice golf board has been considering a greens fee hike for the new year.
Toward that possible end, the golf board recently sent out a survey asking members, among other things, what they would think about an increase.
“I feel compared to other courses, (the current fees) are too low for what you get,” golf board president Beau Ortiz said after a board meeting Monday night at Eunice City Hall.
Ortiz noted some of the area courses, including in Hobbs, were twice as expensive for a single player as the Eunice course is for a couple.
“I just feel that two or more are getting to play for less than one person (at other courses),” Ortiz said. “And we’re trying to increase the revenue. The main reason (for the survey) was revenue for the golf course.”
Currently, Eunice’s annual rates are $480 for families, $384 for couples, $324 for a single adult, and $264 for seniors. The board is considering yearly increases to $575 for families, $500 for couples, $425 for single adults, and $350 for seniors.
One of the survey’s questions asked respondents if they believed those rate increases were fair. Of the 27 who responded to the question, 15 (55.56%) answered ‘yes’, 9 (33.33%) answered ‘no’, and 3 (11.11%) selected ‘no opinion’.
That was only Question 5 of the 12-question survey.
Question 1 was: ‘How long have you been a member of the Eunice Municipal Golf Course?’ There were 26 responses, and the average number of years was 29.
Question 2 read: ‘How many times a month do you play at the Eunice Municipal Golf Course?’ There were 27 responses, and the average number was 15.
Question 3 was: ‘How would you rate the condition of the Pro Shop and building facilities at the Eunice Municipal Golf Course?’ 27 people answered, with 5
(18.52%) stating ‘poor’ and 1 (3.7%) selecting ‘outstanding’. The other 21 (77.78%) fell into the category of ‘no label’, meaning they were essentially answering fair-to-middling because the middle response didn’t have official labels like ‘poor’ or ‘outstanding’.
Question 4 read: ‘How would you rate the overall condition and playability of the Eunice Municipal Golf Course?’ Of the 27 responses, 11 (40.74%) said ‘outstanding’, 2 (7.41%) said ‘poor’, and the other 14
(51.85%) were under the ‘no label’ category.
Question 6 asked: ‘Do you feel the following prices for cart shed rentals would be fair?’ The monthly rental price was listed at $41.67, the semi-annual at $250, and the annual at $500. Of the 27 responses, 15 (55.56%) selected ‘yes’, 9 (33.33%) said ‘no’, and 3
(11.11%) selected ‘no opinion.’
Question 7 read: ‘Would you prefer to pay all membership and cart shed fees in full if you were offered a discount?’ Of 27 respondents, 24 (88.89%) said ‘yes’, 2 (7.41%) said ‘no, and 1
(3.7%) selected ‘no opinion’.
Question 8 asked: ‘Would you be interested in a peak season membership running from Apr. 1 through Sept. 1 if it was available? Of 27 respondents, 16 (59.26%) selected ‘yes’, 6 (22.22%) said ‘no’, and 5 (18.52%) selected ‘no opinion’.
Question 9 read: ‘Would you be likely to shop in the Pro Shop if more merchandise was carried? Of 27 respondents, a whopping 25
(92.59%) said ‘yes’, and only 2 (7.41%) said ‘no’.
Question 10 was, ‘What type of merchandise would you like to see stocked in the Pro Shop?’ There were 27 respondents, but they could select multiple items. There were 25 clicks on apparel/ hats, 20 apiece on golf balls and food other than snacks, 16 on beer, 15 apiece on golf clubs and soft drinks, 14 on snacks, and eight on wine.
Question 11 asked: ‘Do you have any other suggestions or ideas that would improve the course?’ There were 14 answers, which included one that stated: ‘Get rid of the tee times; members should be able to play whenever they want, as much as they want, anytime. And the prices of the course are way too much.’ Another said, ‘Spend more time mowing and cleaning the course. Eliminate all the different tee box colors.’ And still another said, ‘Nope. Waist of taxpayer money’.
The last question asked: ‘Do you have any suggestions on how to increase the interest in golf in our community?’ There were multiple answers pertaining to children – ‘Get kids involved’, ‘Create a youth club’, ‘Programs for kids’ ‘Youth days’, ‘Youth programs, youth leagues, parent-teen leagues’.
Two of the suggestions contradicted each other – ‘Put a bar out there’ and ‘No booze’.
The golf board is going to inform the Eunice City Council of where it’s at with regard to rate increases at the Dec. 14 council meeting, but will not come to a final decision of what increases should be until its own Jan. 19 golf board meeting. If there is a majority vote at that meeting, the golf board will present it to the city council for approval at the council’s Jan. 25 meeting.
In the meantime, the golf board would like to get more responses, and is planning to send surveys out with members’ water bills.
When the golf board appears before the city council at the Dec. 14 meeting, it will ask for approval of a name change from Eunice Municipal Golf Course to Coyote Crossing. City Manager Jordan Yutzy confirmed Monday night that the new name is not being used by anyone else, so it’s fair game.