NORTHFIELD, Vt, (WCAX) It's no secret that the popularity of golf is in decline, affecting courses around the country, including in Vermont. But one golf course Washington County that was teetering on the edge now has a new life.
The sights and sounds of the Northfield Country Club are in full swing, but this year there's something new -- the clamor of construction.
"We're entering the restaurant bar area which is in a state of shambles right at the moment," explained Ted Hoehn, the club's new owner.
The golf course that opened in 1927 was in danger of not opening this year because of years of financial woes. "It was left like they were not going to be opening this year, so the fryolator was full of grease," Hoehn said.
He's no stranger to the area. In his 20s he started the Windridge Tennis & Sports Camps just down the road in Roxbury. Because of COVID-19, the camp didn't open this summer. "We get kids every year from more than 20 countries and more than 30 U.S. states," Hoehn said
He says if there is anything good to come out of the coronavirus for him, it might be this. With the camp closed, he can devote all of his time to the fixing up the golf course, and playing a little golf.
The 78-year-old got the approval from his wife, Nanny.
Reporter Joe Carroll: Sale price?
Ted Hoehn: It was a bargain -- $350,000 -- and that includes the golf course, which is 68-acres, and the farmhouse, and all the equipment that goes with it.
But this purchase isn't just a hobby. He plans to add members, both corporate and individual. Hoehn also plans to tie in the summer camp with the golf course. "At Windbridge, our three sports are tennis, soccer and horseback riding, and golf has been what was called an elective up until now," he said.
Current members like Pierre Grenier are happy it's still open. "Matter of fact, I didn't think I was going to play at all, because of traveling and stuff like that," Grenier said.
Hoping for a hit that's more than just par for the course. "It's a beautiful, beautiful golf course," Hoehn said.