GolfNorth Properties, Canada’s largest consolidator of public golf courses, has entered into a long-term agreement to lease the Club at Bond Head, a spectacular 36-hole facility in the town of Bond Head, Ontario; just west of Highway 400 between Aurora and Barrie. The Club at Bond Head offers two magnificent courses, designed by the renowned architectural firm of Hurdzan-Fry. The South Course has frequently been ranked in the Score Top 100, and the list of the top 59 public courses in the nation.
Occasionally, one comes across a piece of property which was simply destined to be a golf course. Brant Valley Golf Club is one of those pieces of land. It’s a deep river valley (in fact it’s the junction of three different tributaries of the Grand River system) near St. George, Ontario. Glacial runoff carved out topography that would have made for a pretty sad farm. I often think of the settlers who braved the Atlantic Ocean in a creaky wooden ship, then hacked their way through the forest to find that this piece of land assigned by the government was utterly unsuitable for farming (not to mention prone to flooding). I’m sure the settler turned around, walked back to Dundas, and asked for an upgrade. However; the property is the ideal foundation for some truly memorable golf holes.
Calerin Golf Club was the second course in the GolfNorth Family, and my first position within the company. I was contacted through a sales representative, to see if I would be interested in working as a Course Superintendent for The Erin Springs Golf Group (as it was then known). I think we can all agree that GolfNorth is a better moniker. I already had a job that I liked. I was the Superintendent at the Waterloo Golf Academy, where we had just finished construction, and our first successful year was under our belt. I was comfortable there. Our first child has been born that previous summer, and I had been elected to Municipal Council for the first time. I was playing in a band, which had just sold every copy of our demo cassette and was recording a live CD. I wasn’t looking for a new challenge; but as it happens with such things, that’s when the opportunities often tend to arise.