Carnduff is a small agricultural town in the extreme southeast corner of Saskatchewan, boasting a population of over 1,000.
Among the many sporting activities offered in Carnduff is their challenging nine-hole, grass green golf course situated 3 1/2 kilometres north of the town.
The Carnduff Golf Club is one of the oldest golf courses in the area, as it started back in the mid-1950s.
Like many other courses that age, they started out with sand greens and switched to grass greens in 1982.
Kris Carley, vice-president of the board, explains that their course has been open for business for just over a week now.
"It’s been busy as ever since opening day," he said.
"The snow this week will slow things down but we’ll take the trade-off with the moisture," said Carley.
"The course and the greens are very dry. We just got the water going two days ago and we watered one and a half nights and now we got this moisture, which is good. We need it but I think everybody was in the same boat."
"We started pumping water early to get our ponds full and the creek is up a bit," he added later. "We can run out of water on our course real quick."
The Carnduff Golf Club doesn't have the luxury of having a park close to their golf course like some of their neighbouring communities, which is good for green fee players.
Due to COVID-19, more people got out and golfed last year because it was one sport that could be played.
"With us being in the corner … right now the people from Manitoba can’t come to play our course. We’re landlocked in the corner of the province," explains Carley.
"Right now anyone who wants to come golf our course, they have to drive by four or five other courses before they even get here so it’s a little tough that way for us," says Carley.
Carley goes on to explain:
"Our course as well as other smaller communities in our area have comparable prices to play a round of golf."
"We’d like to get up around that 150 mark for members."
"I remember years ago we were at 200 and then we dropped down to about 130."
Carley was asked: Why do you think that is?
"From when I was a kid the participation in all sports is down," says Carley.
"Last year when a lot of sports were shut down, more people seemed to grab their clubs and come play a round."
"From what I’ve heard all across Saskatchewan and even Canada, courses were stacked full because there were no other activities that people could take part in."
Golfing can get expensive for some, depending on how many times a week you go and how many in the family are golfers.
“We’re a member-driven course,” explains Carley. “Eighty per cent of our revenue is from the memberships so once you get your membership it doesn’t cost you anything. Although if you’re just starting out, yes clubs can be expensive."
But on the positive side of things … if you’re going as a family you’re spending time together and you know where your kids are.
"It’s hopefully going to be a good year," comments a hopeful Carley.
The club holds ladies’ night on Tuesdays and men’s night on Wednesdays.
The club also has both a men’s and ladies’ Antler Creek which are both annual events. Both are member/guests where players are encouraged to bring a guest to play in the tournament.
The Oilmen’s has always been their biggest tournament although last year was the first time in 35 years that they didn’t host one. With COVID they didn’t have any tournaments.
"But we have some fun tournaments. I run a junior tournament in town. It’s just a one day adult/child tournament," explains Carley.
With the Antler Creek winding through the Carnduff Golf Club golf course, you're sure to have a challenging game as well as a scenic one.