26 Jun 2024 | Clubs and Facilities |

100,000 reasons to celebrate at Ringwood

by Martin Blake

Ringwood image
Mayor Kylie Spears congratulates Bill McDonnell, player of the 100,000th round at Ringwood.

Ringwood Golf, a public golf course in Melbourne’s east owned and operated by Maroondah City Council, celebrating a 100,000-round year for the first time ever.

As the golf boom continues apace and the financial year comes to a close, Maroondah Mayor Cr Kylie Spears, Cr Mike Symon and employees at the course celebrated the 100,000th round player on Wednesday.

It was Bill McDonnell who had the honour of playing the 100,000th round for 2023-24 on Wednesday morning, and he was given a three-month free membership as a commemorative prize.

Golf Australia believes the 100,000 rounds figure is one of the highest for a single course in the country.

This achievement has surpassed Ringwood Golf’s 93,000 rounds last financial year and has overtaken their previous record of 94,000 from 1997-98.

The course features 18 holes and located just 30 minutes from the CBD. In an environment where some local councils are looking to public golf courses for much-needed housing, it is great to see the popularity of Ringwood Golf continuing to grow.

This popularity ensures the golf course is profitable, with the profits being channeled back into the community and into upgrades and maintenance of the course, undertaken by the dedicated council staff.

“It’s been amazing,” said Stuart Robertson, Assistant Manager – Maroondah Golf said. “The only complaint that we sometimes get is that we can’t get enough people on the course. From first-light onward it’s booked out, and we try our best to get as many golfers as we possibly can playing a round.”

Maroondah City Council has invested considerable time and resources into the course to make it playable in all conditions, including drainage upgrades, pathway renewals and sand capping on wet areas. They are also about to introduce an indoor golf simulator, which features the Falcon - the latest simulator from Foresight Sports.

Maroondah City Council also owns and manages the nearby Dorset Golf public golf course in Croydon, which is also boasting strong growth. Dorset Golf is expected to hit 82,000 rounds for this financial year, giving the two Council courses a total of about 182,000 rounds played.

“When the previous record was set (in 1997-98), it was a wet winter and we came into a nice, warm summer, Tiger Woods was on the scene and Greg Norman was coming toward the end of his time,” said Robertson.

“Pre-Covid we were sitting at around 70,000s and 80,000’s rounds per year, there’s been a big change and uptake over the last few years.”

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