Umbrellas are used on the Marysville course almost as often as clubs. (Steve Powell/Staff Photo)

Umbrellas are used on the Marysville course almost as often as clubs. (Steve Powell/Staff Photo)

Rain water a hazard for M’ville golf course

MARYSVILLE – Three representatives of Premier Golf Club gave their annual report at Monday’s work session.

Parks director Jim Ballew said, “We don’t want to blame it on Mother Nature, but we’re going to.”

The failure of the irrigation system was another issue.

“We knew it was coming. We were planning for the future. But bubble gum and baling wire didn’t last,” Ballew joked.

Premier’s Matt Amundsen said there were seven months of rain, “which is off the charts,” and low temperatures, “which are not a good mix for golf.”

Looking back to March of 2015, when Premier took over running the city’s course, Cedarcrest was near the top of its 11 courses. The last two years have been wet, but Cedarcrest still finished close to the middle.

The course is shut down when it’s too wet.

“They’re not going to come back again” if they play and it’s too wet, Amundsen said. “If you get a reputation people are not going to come play.”

He said club pro Shayne Day has run a tight ship, only spending money when he had to. The course shared equipment with other Premier courses, helping keep costs down. Payroll was under budget, even though the minimum wage was raised. Workers were just sent home early on rainy days.

The aging fleet of the golf carts was another costly issue with repairs.

But Ballew and Day emphasized that Cedarcrest is much more than a golf course.

“It’s the city’s largest park,” Ballew said, adding Cedarcrest hosts many community events. He said the Twilight Cross Country Meet brings in up to 7,000 people each fall. Next to the Marysville Strawberry Festival, it’s the best tourist event the city has.

Day mentioned the Tour of Lights each Christmas season brings in about 5,000 riders, and the Rotary Shrimp Boil brings in about 500 participants, among other events. He also said there are many leagues and senior and military play. Youth participation also is up with high school golf, junior camps and Youth on Course play for only $5.

“Tiger Woods is playing well” and that brings more youth out, Ballew said. “The youth are our next clients.”

This year, Cedarcrest ranks fourth out of Premier’s 11 courses. Amundsen said he could see it moving up the ladder as Legion in north Everett goes through renovations.

Mayor Jon Nehring asked what Premier is doing on some of Cedarcrest’s wettest holes. He was told sand has been placed on them to help with drainage.

“It will be in pristine shape this summer,” Amundsen said.

There’s another reason golfers should try Cedarcrest, he added.

“Cedarcrest is a little more challenging than Legion,” he said.

In other news

This Monday night, the council will look at measures to:

•Change the noise code. The code is complex and with warm weather coming, and accompanying noise increases, changes are needed, police say. •Extend leases for Marysville Extended Shelter Home Services.

•Receive a grant for Senior Center projects.

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