Brad Ziemer / British Columbia Golf
Corrine Allan doesn’t hesitate when asked if she thinks her golf course, now one giant water hazard, can recover from the devastation brought by the flooding in the Sumas Prairie area of Abbotsford.
“Oh gosh, yes,” says Allan, owner and general manager of Fraserglen Golf Course. “I am going to aim for March.There is a lot of water and debris on the course, but once that is cleaned up and the greens are cleaned over time, it will come back just fine.”
Make that lots and lots of water. Allan estimates her clubhouse and restaurant had as much as five feet of water inside them.
“And we have a lot of equipment, as do farmers in the area, that are under water,” she says. “We have our pro shop and a restaurant and another house on the property that are all ruined, basically.”
Fraserglen is one of many Fraser Valley golf courses impacted by last week’s flooding. The par 62 course,located on South Parallel Road near Highway 1, sits on 56 acres. “It’s devastating and I don’t think the shock has fully set in yet,” says Allan. “And nobody has insurance so we’re hoping the government will kick in.”
Flood insurance is not available to homes and businesses in the area because Sumas Prairie sits on a flood plain. Allan has been buoyed by the offers of support she has received. “People have reached out to us like you wouldn’t believe,” Allan says.
“And the golf industry is amazing. They are willing to help. From as far away as Calgary, we’re hearing,‘what can we send you, what can we do for you?’ It’s just really amazing.”
Allan refuses to feel sorry for herself. “I have my family healthy and we can just work really hard to make everything happen. We’ll just roll up our sleeves and get to work. I think that’s all you can do.”
Mission Golf Club wasn’t hit by serious flooding, but the atmospheric river that dropped record rainfall on the area has put one hole out of play. A slide occurred on Mission’s par 3 third hole, which also plays as No. 12 from a different tee for those playing 18 holes. Most of a rock wall fronting the green was washed away in the slide and head pro Mark Anderson expects the hole to remain closed until the early spring. “Luckily we have a practice hole (between holes 6 and 7) ,” Anderson said. “So we can turn that into a par 3. That’s a good back-up for us.”
Chilliwack courses were also hit hard. Royalwood was completely under water and remained closed as of Nov. 21. Nearby Chilliwack Golf Club hopes to re-open some time this week. “We can actually see our golf course again,” said Chilliwack general manager Bryan Ewart. “I think we’ll be okay. None of our buildings were damaged and we’ll get out of this relatively unscathed, unlike some of our neighbours.
“For a while there we had four island greens. It would be good for our marketing: TPC (Sawgrass) has nothing on us.” Ewart said the flooding and this past summer’s heat dome have made it a tough year. “These extremes are pretty harsh,” Ewart says. “I have been here 10 years now and have never experienced anything like this. We keep saying we are so ready for this year to be done.”
BACK IN BUSINESS
The lower portion of Belmont Golf Course in Langley had eight to 10 feet of water on it at one point. Troy Peverley, vice president of the West Coast Golf Group, said the course would be open for nine-hole play this week. Swaneset Bay in Pitt Meadows has all 36 of its holes back in play and the WCGG’s other course, Hazelmere in Surrey, has re-opened after being closed for a couple of days. Pitt Meadows Golf Club remained closed as of Nov. 21. It had large pools of standing water and some damage was done to its bridge on the ninth hole.
OAKVILLE, ON – Due to interprovincial travel restrictions and other complexities related to COVID-19, Golf Canada has announced additional changes to its championship schedule for the 2021 season.
Provincial restrictions had previously forced the cancellation of U.S. Open Local and Final Qualifiers, in addition to the NextGen Pacific, NextGen Western, and NextGen Ontario Championships. With continued pandemic-related uncertainty, the remaining NextGen Championships – NextGen Prairie (Quarry Oaks, June 10-13), NextGen Quebec (Club de Golf Hemmingford, June 27-30), and NextGen Atlantic (Dundarave Golf Course, July 12-15) – will also be cancelled and the 2021 NextGen National Junior Orders of Merit will not be awarded. In some cases, these NextGen events would have conflicted with provincial junior championships around Canada that are being delayed and rescheduled.
The two NextGen Fall Series Championships in September will proceed as scheduled. Each field will feature 99 junior boys and girls and exemptions into the 2022 Canadian Junior Championships will be awarded.
- NextGen Fall Series East | September 16-19 | Hollinger Golf Club, Timmins, Ont.
- NextGen Fall Series West | September 23-26 | Myrtle Point Golf Club, Powell River, BC
Golf Canada National Amateur Championships are still scheduled to proceed but will only move forward after approval from regional and provincial health authorities. Operational plans for amateur competitions have been adjusted to incorporate rigorous health and safety protocols. Final decisions about the feasibility of conducting national championships will be made approximately four to six weeks prior to the start of each championship. The safety of championship competitors, tournament staff, volunteers, and host site members will remain the top priority guiding these decisions.
At this time, Golf Canada is able to announce the following changes to its National Amateur Championship schedule:
- Interprovincial team competitions that are usually played concurrently with national championships will not be contested in 2021. The increased complexity associated with team competitions – including group travel and the involvement of non-playing team captains – will not allow for them to proceed this year.
- The Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship will move one week later in July and is now scheduled to be hosted by Edmonton Petroleum Golf & Country Club in Edmonton, Alta. from July 26-30. The Canadian Women’s Amateur was last held in Edmonton in 1993. The previously scheduled host, The Royal Montreal Golf Club, has agreed to welcome this national championship in 2025 or 2026, after hosting the Presidents Cup in 2024.
- The Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship will remain in its current date and is now scheduled to be hosted at the Ambassador Golf Club in Windsor, Ont. from August 1-5. The championship—which was previously contested at two courses with a 264-player field—will be reduced to a 156-player field and be contested at one course. The previously scheduled hosts, Le Club Laval-sur-le-Lac and Club de Golf Saint-Raphaël, will explore the possibility of hosting the championship in a future year.
- The Canadian Junior Girls Championship will move one week earlier and is now scheduled to be played at Leduc Golf Club in Leduc, Alta. from July 19-23. The previously scheduled host, Club de Golf Sainte-Marie will play host to this championship in 2025 or 2026.
- The Canadian Men’s Senior Championship is now scheduled to be contested at Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu in La Malbaie, Qué. from September 20-24. The previously scheduled host, Ken-Wo Golf Club in New Minas, N.S. will host in 2025.
- The Canadian University/College Championship has been postponed to October. A host course and date will be confirmed in the near future.
- The Canadian Junior Boys Championship will remain at Club de Golf La Vallée du Richelieu in Sainte-Julie, Qué. from August 8-12. The Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship and the Canadian Women’s Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship will also remain as scheduled. Fort McMurray Golf Club will host the men from August 23-27 and Golf Château-Bromont will host the women from August 30-September 2.
A complete list of Golf Canada’s competitions is available here.