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Thursday, October 30, 2008

Okay, so Bobby Jones didn't really design it

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    Yesterday, I reported that Douglas, GA, has the lowest cost of living of any town in the nation.  I had not been able to talk with Douglas Golf and Country Club General Manager Greg Miller, but he kindly returned my call earlier today.  The club features the only members-only course in the town of 25,000.
    Greg confirmed that initiation fees for the club are indeed just $250, and that dues are $195 for full-family golf.  These are by far the lowest private 18-hole
Initiation fees for the private club are the lowest I have ever encountered.

golf course fees I've encountered in my travels.  Greg, who indicated joining fees have been as high as $1,000 in better economic times, says the club's current roster is 270 members with a goal of 350.
    As for Bobby Jones being one of the designers of the course in 1931, as some web sites indicate, Greg was quite forthcoming:
    "He showed up for one day," he said, "made a few comments about a couple of holes, and left."  The course was originally a nine-hole layout, but a second nine was added in 1989.  Greg says the new routing put 30 residential lots inside the boundaries of the club, but 20 years later, just 15 houses have been built, although all lots are sold.  On the rare occasion the unimproved lots come on the market, they are priced in the neighborhood of $70,000 for a little less than ½ acre.  The relatively few lots do encroach somewhat on the course, necessitating out-of-bounds stakes between fairways and backyards.
    Club members are typically professionals and executives from local industry, which includes a Walmart distribution center, a mobile home manufacturer, a number of financial institutions and a large hospital.  Greg, who came to the club from the Atlanta area almost five years ago, lives in one of the newer housing developments in the area, Bay Meadows, just five miles from the Douglas club's front gate.  The price range for homes in Bay Meadows is $120,000 to $550,000.
    If you would like more information about Douglas Golf and Country Club, Greg Miller can be reached at (912) 384-4707.

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Larry Gavrich

This blog was conceived and is published by me, Larry Gavrich, a former corporate communications executive who founded HomeOnTheCourse, LLC, in 2005.  Our firm advises baby boomers and others seeking a lifestyle in which golf is a major component.  My wife Connie and I own a home in Connecticut (not on a golf course) and a condo at Pawleys Plantation in Pawleys Island, SC, on a Jack Nicklaus layout.  We began our search for our home on the course more than 15 years ago, and the challenges of the search inspired me to research golf communities and write objective reviews of them.

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