BY KEITH LACEY
For most diehard golfers, there are only two seasons, not four. ThereÂ?s golf season, of course, and then a long winter of discontent.
Even though Mother Nature has provided Northern Ontario with terrible spring weather following a long and bitterly cold winter, golf season has arrived at some Sudbury and area courses, while others are only a few days away from opening for the 2003 season.
Pine Grove Golf Course on Highway 69 near the Four Corners was the first local club to open last Friday with all 18 greens ready for play.
Despite the course being brown and with terrible weather over most of the Easter Holiday weekend, the course was busy.
Â?We opened for business Friday and we had quite a few of the diehards out,Â? said club pro. George Lacko. Â?All the greens came in very nice, although the fairways are still wet in places.
Â?We need some sunshine and a little warm weather to green things up, but the fairways and greens came in nicer than they have the past couple of years, which is nice considering how long and cold the winter was.Â?
Regulars are very anxious to get their clubs out and start hitting balls, said Lacko.
Â?Those out on opening weekend werenÂ?t crying too much because they were just happy to be out playing the game,Â? he said. Â?Hopefully the weather will be nice by this weekend and we can get the place into full swing.Â?
Todd Fryer, operator of Meadow Springs Golf Course in Monetville, said his club hopes to open on the May 3 weekend.
Â?The last couple of springs we were lucky enough to be open in April, but itÂ?s usually normal to open the first or second week of May,Â? he said. Â?We havenÂ?t had very much nice weather this spring, but once we get some sunshine and warm rain, things should green up quite nice.Â?
HereÂ?s a look at some of the other area golf courses and when they plan on opening:
Cedar Green Golf Course in Garson also opened last weekend with all 18 greens ready for play.
You donÂ?t have to book tee times until May 1. Phone 560-1090 for more information.
Clearview Golf Course in Val Caron plans on opening all 18 holes, including full greens, on Thursday, weather permitting. Phone 897-6419 for more information.
Colonial Golf Course in Chelmsford plans on opening during the first weekend of May, depending on the weather. Phone 855-5888 for more information.
Forest Ridge Golf Course in Chelmsford is aiming to open Friday morning with all 18 holes and full greens, weather permitting. Phone 855-8558 for more information.
Lively Golf and Country Club in Lively is tentatively scheduled to open the May 1 weekend, weather permitting. Phone 692-5553 for more information.
Penage Golf Course in Penage still has spring runoff and hopes to open the first or second week of May. Phone 866-2793 for more information.
Sixth Avenue Golf Club in Lively is aiming to open Saturday morning, weather permitting. The clubÂ?s restaurant and cafe is open daily for lunch and dinner. Phone 692-4203 for more information.
Sudbury Highlands Golf Course on Silver Lake Road off the Highway 17 bypass is hoping to open for the 2003 season on Thursday, weather permitting. Phone 523-2518 for more information.
Timber Wolf Golf Course on Maley Drive in Sudbury, is scheduled to open the weekend of May 2, depending on the weather. The championship golf courseÂ?s pro. shop is now open daily from 9 am to 5 pm. Phone 524-9653 for more information.
Twin Stacks Golf Club in Coniston is aiming to open late next week, weather permitting. Telephone 694-2131. Most Sudbury and area driving ranges opened on the weekend as well.