Tumbler Ridge Golf & Country Club takes on a new life

Surrounded by the stunning scenery of the mountains and the Murray River Valley our golf course may not have reached the potential it was built for. Owned by the District of Tumbler Ridge, the golf course was operated by a dedicated group of volunteers. The revenue of this operation did not generate profit and was balanced through District?s Grant program for many years.

In October 2007 the Tumbler Ridge Golf and Country Club Society returned the operation back to the District of Tumbler Ridge.

This was a chance to view this location from the new perspective of Tourism and residents? needs that were identified in the recent studies and strategic planning. Major renovations have not been done to this building, which is now 18-20 years old. Inspection of the property revealed major deficiencies in the new technical requirements of the Fire Code of Canada (NFC) which is designed to provide an acceptable level of fire safety and life safety within structures. There are also electrical and plumbing issues. The results of the inspections and the needed actions were put in three categories and a budget was assigned to accommodate all of them. The analyzing and planning process took about eight weeks and was finished by December 2007.

In a presentation to the Town Council the budget for the golf course renovation of $377,500 was approved, with an expected completion date of April 2008. The project manager for the Golf Course is District Building Inspector, Ken Klickash.

The next step to find contractors through posting in December 2007 did not bring immediate results.Mike Adolf Construction has been contracted to renovate the building envelope (walls, interior and exterior, roof, siding, etc) and employs a large, local workforce. Other contractors include South Peace Electric (Chris Gies) and Derricks Plumbing and Heating. Specialty services were brought in from the Fort St.John area.

There will be significant changes in the main area. Although the seating capacity remains the same (indoor 140, patio 145) the layout is promising more attractiveness and efficiency. The space formally occupied by the kitchen will be included in the seating area. The open view will now allow the guest to enjoy more of the beautiful view. The storage space at the entrance will be included in the new kitchen area. The stairwell will be closed up and modern wheelchair accessible washrooms will be installed. (This also is ?a must? requirement.)

The future of the golf course is very promising for two reasons.

First, there is a business plan for this operation with a declared goal to manage it as a profit centre and second, there is exciting management in place to execute this plan.

Jeff and Tara Ciecko will manage the 2008 season, and are coming to Tumbler Ridge with a broad spectrum of experience. Each one of them is a professional in his and her own field. Jeff Ciecko, Canadian PGA, Class A Member(10 Years) is coming to Tumbler Ridge with his experience as a general manager of Nicklaus Golf Course in Whistler and the Salmon Arm Golf Club. Jeff has put together exciting programs for adults and children. Tara Ciecko is experienced in management and event planning which perfectly complements the potential of this establishment. Weddings and other parties can now be held in a place with refined atmosphere and ambience.

The first big function will be the Mother?s day Lunch on May 11th.

If you are looking for work at the Golf Course, there are job applications available at the Town Hall. The job fair for the golf course is planned for April 14th.