When the Mooresville Municipal Golf Course closed for renovations in November 2014, a fall 2015 reopening was targeted.
The course was completed in October 2015. However, early delays and a desire to let the new grass mature before letting golfers onto it put that plan on hold.
Nearly two years and a $10 million makeover later, the course, now referred to as Mooresville Golf Club, made its much-anticipated reopening last September. And so far, the changes have exceeded expectations.
“When it opened up, it was in great condition and everybody said, ‘Wow, it was worth the wait,’” said Jeremy Elliott, the club’s PGA professional. “Everything was absolutely plush when we opened up, and I think that’s been the reward with so many repeat customers now.”
According to golf course manager Luke Steimke, who joined the club last May, there were only 24 members when the course closed. He said the club boasted 194 — 56 shy of its cutoff — as of last Tuesday.
But what exactly is drawing so many golfers?
The new 18-acre driving range is one of the most popular attractions. Before the renovations, the driving range was about 200 yards long, Steimke said. The new double-sided driving range stretches about 320 yards and includes six target greens.
The club has implemented a practice plan that allows members and non-members to get unlimited range balls. The member plan is $180 for the first six months paid in advance, and the non-member plan is $270. Member and non-member family plans are also available.
Steimke said about 61 people are signed up for the practice plan, which also allows golfers to access a new short-game practice area and a large putting green.
The extra practice might help before you test your skills on the 18 holes redesigned by Kris Spence.
A majority of the changes occurred on the front nine, which opened in 1949 and was designed by famed designer Donald Ross. Only the first two holes on the front resemble their previous appearance.
The front’s five finishing holes — including the club’s new signature hole, the 139-yard par 3 No. 7 that features seven bunkers surrounding the green — are among its six new ones. By eliminating an outdated reservoir, Spence maximized the use of the land to reshape the front.
The changes on the back nine, designed by Porter Gibson and opened in 1977, aren’t as drastic. Yet an unusual layout comprised of three par 3s, three par 4s and three par 5s makes the collection of holes unique.
What might be the most obvious difference is the significant increase in the numbers of bunkers. Elliott said 26 previously dotted the course. Now there are 70.
Adding to the course’s difficulty is an increase in total yardage. The layout now stretches 6,803 yards from the championship tees, 6,316 yards from the men’s tees and 5,658 yards from the senior tees.
“A lot of the lower handicap golfers who come out and play,” Steimke said, “they’re really liking it because it’s a challenge and it’s not just a wide open area.”
Other course improvements include:
- A transition to TifEagle Bermuda greens.
- Five miles of eight-foot-wide concrete cart paths.
- Eight miles of drainage pipes.
- A bathroom facility and pump station between holes No. 14 and 15.
- A cart bridge between holes No. 5 and 9.
Still, more changes are on the horizon.
Steimke said golfs carts with GPS systems are expected to arrive May 1. He also added that the multi-level clubhouse, which will include a pro shop and restaurant, is tentatively scheduled to open in May. A mobile unit currently serves as the temporary location of both the pro shop and clubhouse.
“I never saw the old course,” Steimke said. “But the new course, for a municipal golf course, you won’t find any better in the state or on the East Coast, in my mind.”
Adult playing 18 holes with a cart: $38 on weekdays, $47 on weekend/holidays
For those 55 and older playing 18 holes with a cart: $30 on weekdays, $40 on weekend/holidays ($35 after noon)
More rates can be found here.
A full golf membership includes access to the course each day of the week, 14-day advanced tee time reservations, organized group play days and member pricing on golf shop merchandise, among other perks.
The full golf membership costs $1,500 for an individual and $2,250 for a family. For those 55 and older, it’s $1,200 for an individual and $1,800 for a family.
A full breakdown of membership options and benefits can be found here.