Golf Bucks County

By Bob Oliver

Middletown Country Club

Middletown is a compact 80 acres of challenging golf, with rolling hills and large specimen trees that have watched many golfers travel its fairways over time. It has retained its old time feel with tees and greens in close proximity, allowing golfers to walk the course if they choose.

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02 May
2020

LPGA revises Shoprite dates

Written by Bob Oliver

In a COVID world everything is upended, changed, revised.

The states of Pennsylvania and New Jersey have reopened ability to play the game - under social distancing guidelines - but the professional game in on hold. At least for now.

As "the curve" has turned better, there is hope. The LPGA has revised its schedule, eliminating many tournaments previously scheduled for this year and has issued a preliminary new schedule of events for the remainder of the year.

For area fans there is some great news.  The ShopRite LPGA Championship, presented by Acer, remains on the schedule with new dates.  The tournament iwill be played at Seaview Golf Resort's Bay Course as planned, but with the dates moved to July 27-August 2.  

Much is not finalized.   The tournament hopes to have fans allowed, but tournament officials indicate "fans are still an option that has not been finalized." Much will depend on where the South Jersey area is in the way of COVID-19 response next month. 

THe important thing is planning is there for a full reopening of the event at the latter date. 

That's good news to area charities, as the ShopRite annually contributes more than $1M to charitable causes. In its history the event has generated more than $35M to charity.

Players love coming to the area. Many have stayed with the same families for years. And the players will be incented by a purse boost to $2M for this year's event.

So far, so good.

 

 

27 Apr
2020

Golf courses opening

Written by Bob Oliver

Today area pro shops reacted to something they hadn't in more than a month --- their telephones were ringing at a brisk rate.

Governor Tom Wolf removed the restrictions on play, reducing the rules which had been in place for the last five weeks because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

To be clear, social distancing remains critical, and courses will be implementing policies that allow their courses to be open while enforcing various procedures.

Some of the restrictions could mean a longer distance between tee times, limits on players using golf carts, keeping flagsticks in the hole at all times and keeping gathering areas closed. 

Representatives of Bensalem, Northampton Valley and Neshaminy Valley said tee times are available for the weekend, but that all procedures are being reviewed for the reopening. To a person they said safe rather than sorry is the message.

NVCC will make tee times at 20 minute intervals to ensure spacing of golfers. It's driving range will not be open this weekend. Flagsticks may not be removed and other protective methods will be enforced.  

THe Governor cited residents physical and mental health as being atop the reasons for reopening, along with the drop in COVID-19 cases in general. He had been giving through to reopening portions of the state but in the end went with the blanket removal of restrictions on certain industries.

"As we start to take measured, limited steps to reopen the Commonwealth, reopening some industries will help rebuild our economy and strengthen our mental health," explained the Governor.

The Center for DIsease Control reminds all that one should NOT play golf if your sick or recently were diagnosed with COVID-19.  It also recommended not to take part in organized events (e.g., leagues where multiple people would be on hand).   Social distancing remains critical.  But it did not recommend playing with a mask, although one could.

Still, with practicing in the basement may be nice for a while, playing the game is much better.

Swing away!