TWIN LAKES -- While several golf courses in the Kent area have closed, The Fairway at Twin Lakes is expecting an increase in business this year.
"We have some room for morning leagues at this point if anybody wanted to do that, but as far as booking an evening league, we're solid from 4 p.m. until we close Monday to Friday now," said Tony Guerrieri, a third-year golf professional at the course.
"We have multiple leagues each night. The golf industry is shrinking and courses are slowly closing. It's a luxury for us because we capture that audience [from other courses]. A lot of them had never come to our golf course because there were other courses to go to. Now that a few golf courses are closed in the Portage County area, we capture all that audience."
Oak Knolls Golf Course on Route and the Kent State University Golf Course on Route 59 both announced in December they would not reopen in 2017.
Formerly known as Twin Lakes Country Club, The Fairways at Twin Lakes opened in 1923. It was a private facility until closing its doors in 2009. The Beck family purchased the facility in 2011.
The nearly 100-acre golf course is a Donald Ross design. Guerrieri said the "mint condition" of the course is a huge factor in drawing in players.
"All of the Ross golf courses have a sort of uniqueness to them," Guerrieri said. "Their greens are special, the holes roll a different type of way. You can recognize a Ross golf course when you play it. The entire time I have been here, all I have heard is good things about the golf course.
"People can't believe how nice it is. Some people see a golf course and they just see tees and greens. I don't think people really realize what goes into it. This is more than just a golf course. It's an important part of the community."
David Beck said this is the first season The Lodge at Twin Lakes, a 5,000-square-foot facility which was built in 2014, will offer a full bar to golfers.
"This is our first year on the golf course side where we have had a liquor license," Beck said, noting the idea to attain a liquor license began when the building was constructed in 2014.
"This golf course has always been an important part of the community, even when it was a country club, and that's something we recognized right away when we bought it," Beck said. "We want to make sure we continue that. We finally feel like, with the liquor license, we really can provide for golfers in the community."
Buzz DiSalvo is entering his first season as a golf professional at the course. "There's no comparison between this course and any other around if you ask me," he said. "The greens are so smooth and the entire course is great."
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