Doug and Tina Sutton.

A sizable crowd attended Oakwood Golf Club’s annual meeting last Sunday – the first hosted by the new management team of Doug and Tina Sutton.

General manager Doug Sutton announced that the fees to play at Oakwood have been reduced. The charge for a full membership is now $725 annually, while the non-member cost is now $25 for playing 18 holes with a power cart and $15 for nine holes, with cart.

Sutton said improvements expected to be made in the near future include refurbishing tee boxes, rough areas and pond banks, sprucing up and painting the cart sheds, and identifying and carrying out other projects.

Head groundskeeper Edgar Scantlin is being retained, Sutton said, and Brad Rees will continue to offer free lessons on evenings beginning in April (men on Mondays, women on Tuesdays and juniors on Wednesdays).

League play will back again this year, including men’s, women’s and church league. Introduction of a “couples night” is also being considered (perhaps on Fridays).

Sutton said Houston and Licking high schools have committed to continue using Oakwood as their teams’ home course, and an invitation was extended to Plato Schools to have a team play there, too.

Sutton said the plan is to continue hosting most, if not all, of the same fundraising tournaments that have gone on at Oakwood in recent years, and that a couple of new tournaments will likely be added to the schedule to benefit the course itself.

Several people in the crowd asked questions about Oakwood’s new direction, and some offered suggestions for programs, specials and other ideas that might attract more attention – and people. But one man commented on how such ideas are all well and good, but there’s one primary factor that fans of the golf course need to keep foremost in their minds.

“What it really comes down to is more people playing golf here more often,” he said, “and that starts with everyone in this room.”

Doug Sutton said that on Feb. 7 he would be attending a meeting with representatives of several area golf courses.

“We really want to thank all the people who have been so supportive through this whole transition process,” Sutton said. “There are still many things for us to take care, but we seem to be on the right track. We’re looking forward to moving ahead and making this work.”

Oakwood Golf Club can be found online. The phone number is 417-967-3968. 

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