New lakes form between No. 9 and 10 at the Mount Brenton Golf Course after downpours earlier this month. (Photo submitted)

New lakes form between No. 9 and 10 at the Mount Brenton Golf Course after downpours earlier this month. (Photo submitted)

Island golf course does a booming business in 2020

A total of 15,000 more rounds played than the previous year at Mount Brenton

There’s been no business like the golf business since the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Mount Brenton Golf Course in Chemainus has been reaping the rewards of providing a place for people to get away from it all while restrictions allowed and there were fewer other options for social distancing.

Related story: Mount Brenton Golf Course a busy place on a regular basis

“Our membership has grown to numbers we have not seen in over 10 years,” noted Best Team Management’s Jan Best, PGA of Canada head professional at the course.

“Many younger members joining is a good sign for the club and future of golf overall.”

The course was initially closed in March of 2020 for nearly a month due to the pandemic. After reopening in April, an immediate increase in play occurred.

“We were booked solid from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily from the day we reopened to the end of September,” Best indicated.

“We had 15,000 more rounds played on our course in 2020 compared to 2019.”

He attributed it to people being desperate for safe activities, especially outdoors.

“When Bonnie Henry deemed that golf was safe and permissible, our traffic increased even more,” Best added.

Related story: Golfers enjoying their time back on the course

However, the normal tournament schedule at the course was cut back to just one event. Mount Brenton hosted the BC Bantam Juniors and everything went well.

An immense amount of rain in December and January has caused some flooding on the course.

“January is not typically a good weather month and we expect sporadic closures every year,” Best explained.

For most of 2020, the course operated with intense sanitization protocols for power carts. The pro shop operated mainly through a Go Service Window during the year.

“This made it difficult to sell retail merchandise, but sales were still substantial,” noted Best.

Nearly a month into the new year, it looks like the game plan is going to remain very much the same.

“We plan to have limited tournaments in 2021, if any, Best conceded. “And continue with our same protocols from 2020 until we hear different from our health authority.”

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Mount Brenton Golf Course pro Jan Best during a sunny off-season day at the course. (Photo submitted)

Mount Brenton Golf Course pro Jan Best during a sunny off-season day at the course. (Photo submitted)

Heavy rain earlier this month created an extra water hazard along the bottom of No. 10 at Mount Brenton Golf Course. (Photo submitted)

Heavy rain earlier this month created an extra water hazard along the bottom of No. 10 at Mount Brenton Golf Course. (Photo submitted)

Mount Brenton Golf Course experienced a substantial increase in the number of rounds played during 2020. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Mount Brenton Golf Course experienced a substantial increase in the number of rounds played during 2020. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Tony Smith spent a lot of time on the Mount Brenton Golf Course in 2020. (File photo by Don Bodger)

Tony Smith spent a lot of time on the Mount Brenton Golf Course in 2020. (File photo by Don Bodger)