One popular escape in the last few months has been the golf course. Golfers have flooded the links in big numbers. In fact, June was a record month in the long history of Meriden’s Hunter Golf Club.
Hunter pro Bob Tiedemann said the municipal course welcomed more than 200 golfers per day in June. He said the numbers declined a little since temperatures have gone up in July, but attendance still remains strong.
Despite being busy, the Meriden course has had a unique feel this summer. Youth clinics, leagues and tournaments have been nearly nonexistent.
“It’s been different, obviously,” Tiedemann said. “We haven’t had any tournaments. I have a couple scheduled for August. The state has relaxed a few rules. We’ve had some men’s and ladies clubs. We’ve had nothing with a shotgun start.”
Hunter has also seen an influx of new golfers.
“People are golfing. There’s nothing else to do,” Tiedemann said. “There aren’t many other sports. People aren’t going away as much. They are golfing.”
The uptick has resulted in record numbers for the course, despite closing for four weeks, spanning parts of March and April. Hunter also had a 10-day period when they only allowed walkers.
As always, weekends have been busier. In a typical year, tee times slow up after 1 p.m. But Hunter has been booked through 5 p.m.
The course’s yearly centerpiece is the Meriden Open, which will take place Aug. 15 and 16. The Senior City Championships will be on Aug. 6 and 7.Lyman Orchards
In Middlefield, Lyman Orchards General Manager Jason Beffert said business has been steady.
“We’ve lost all of our tournaments and outings, but we’ve seen a lot more players,” Beffert said. “Maybe it’s because people are working from home and taking advantage of nice days, but it’s almost like every day is a weekend here. We’ve been steady with golfers as opposed to different events.”
Beffert said business is up and there are enough carts for everyone. The course closed only a day or two in mid-March.Tradition in Wallingford
The Tradition Golf Club of Wallingford has been averaging more than 200 golfers per day.
“It’s been very busy,” Tradition pro Dave Giacondino said. “We’re getting regular players, but we are also getting an overspill of players who can’t get tee times at other places because there’s such a surge of people playing golf because it’s one of the few things you can do.”
The Tradition has run smaller tournaments and leagues, but nothing more than 40 players. Giacondino is hoping to run bigger tournaments in the fall.
Giacondino said the club was particularly busy on the days leading up to and following July 4th weekend. Nice weather was also a big factor for the uptick in play.
Tee times are still scheduled every 10 minutes and dividers have been placed in some of the carts.