Black Butte Ranch has no doubt had a 2016 to remember, and for so many reasons. As the season winds down to his final days, it gives us time to reflect on another wonderful golf season.
Black Butte Ranch hosted some of the premier events in the state this season, and the conditioning of Black Butte Ranch’s two championship golf courses remained at an elite level all year long. More than that, Central Oregon’s weather was idyllic for golf. And the fairways and greens at Big Meadow and Glaze Meadow were once again filled with golfers.
What sticks out the most? Well, I guess that depends who you ask. For Jeff Fought, director of golf at Black Butte Ranch, the thing that pops into mind first is the mild weather seemingly all year long.
“The weather was some of the best that I can remember,” Fought said. “There were hardly any thunderstorms, which is really rare. And it never got too hot in the summer.”
Great weather welcomed the best amateur golfers in Oregon, too. But that is not necessarily what stood out the most when those top golfers arrived at Glaze Meadow in June for the 107th Oregon Amateur.
Only the third time in the tournament’s long history that it had been held in Central Oregon, the tournament went off without a hitch and the golf course was perfectly conditioned.
“Hosting the state amateur was really cool for us,” Fought said. “It is not often that we get a chance to host an event of that magnitude, and I think we really put our best foot forward.”
The Oregon Golf Association must have agreed. Not only was the OGA complimentary during the tournament, the OGA recognized Fought as its Club Executive of the Year and Black Butte Ranch as its Club of the Year in large part because of the way BBR handled the Oregon Amateur.
Aided by the weather and the work put in before the Oregon Amateur, Black Butte Ranch managed another fantastic year in terms of turf condition. The groundwork, though, was set into motion long before summer.
In fact, a relatively mild winter allowed both courses to get off to a fast start.
“We came out of winter looking really good,” Phil Lagao, Black Butte Ranch’s longtime superintendent, said in early March. “We just did the first mow of the greens, tees and fairways on Wednesday. And we’re getting everything cleaned up. Yeah, I’m pretty happy.”
The seeds of the future at Black Butte Ranch may have been planted, too. Junior programs such as SNAG Golf grew in popularity, and Black Butte Ranch’s many instructional programs showed increases nearly across the board.
That can only help build enthusiasm for the game, and of course, there is nothing Black Butte Ranch would rather see.
“Our junior golf programs were incredibly well attended this year,” said Tom Baker, head professional at Black Butte Ranch. “I think across the board, our instructional programs were up. As a golf professional there is no sweeter sight than a busy instructional program, especially those for juniors.”
Add it all up, and it was another fine season at Black Butte Ranch.
Of course, the season is not quite over yet. Book a tee time online, or call 855-210-5305 or the Golf Shop at 541-595-1545. For more information on how to create the perfect golf vacation next season at Black Butte Ranch call Ryan Dunning, golf sales manager, at 541-595-1292 or email him at email@example.com.