Fox Den Golf Course sets records this summer
STOW – Golfers are a driving force in breaking revenue records at Fox Den Golf Course.
The golf season was off to a bad start after temporarily closing mid-March due to COVID-19, but after reopening April 20, business has been better than expected.
Fox Den Golf Course, 2770 Call Road, has set record highs for revenue during June, July and August, said Nicholas Wren, chief of staff for the city. Records go back to 2004, and 2020 has had the highest revenue with over $200,000 for the first time in June and $232,000 in July and August is expected to top $220,000.
In April, Wren told city council the golf course revenue was $5,000 this year compared to $120,000 in 2019.
The total by the end of August 2020 is expected to exceed 2019’s total revenue at the same time, Wren said.
“By the end of August we’ll be ahead of last year’s total through August,” Wren said. “We’re so busy you have to schedule a tee time. There are times when we don’t have an open tee time until 6 p.m.”
If they have decent weather, the trend could continue through December when they close.
“There are limited options for recreation for people,” Wren said. “The course is in tremendous shape, and our new golf course superintendent has done a great job.”
General manager Gregg Bobbs is new this year and joins general manager Joe Vojtko who has been working at Fox Den for six years. Fox Den employs three full-time people and about 50 seasonal employees.
While the course closes in December for the season, it could open for a stretch of good weather during the winter months, Wren said.
Golfers must follow the Ohio and Summit County Public Health guidelines for social distancing. Rules included 6-foot distancing, scheduled tee times and no congregating in groups.
The driving range and putting greens are now open.
The clubhouse is currently closed but windows at each end allow for food purchases and for paying fees. Patrons can use the restrooms if they wear masks.
“Some merchandise is brought outside for sales, but food and merchandise sales are down dramatically,” Wren said.
Earlier in the season, Fox Den rented 30 extra golf carts for a few months, Wren said.
“Unfortunately, they came and took them away and you can’t find a golf cart anywhere,” he said. “We’re short on carts. Some people have to walk.”
The pandemic has taught Wren not to plan but take a “wait and see” approach for next year.
“We may increase our number of carts, Wren said. “We have social distancing items in place and plexiglass in place in the clubhouse, and we’re ready for customers to be in the building once we feel it’s safe for them to be inside.”
Updates and all rules are on the Fox Den site www.foxdengc.com and anyone violating the rules will be asked to leave with no refund. For more information, go to the city site at www.stowohio.org or call 330-689-2700.
Gannett reporter Laura Freeman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org