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Visitors to the Crooked Tree Golf Course can now practice their swing after sunset.
Pima County Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation (NRPR) has partnered with the course’s operations team to make a number of improvements. First on the list of planned upgrades, the driving range has been expanded to include a state-of-the-art lighting system.
“Golfers love it because they can come to practice in the evenings when the temperatures cool,” said Rich Mueller, vice president and managing partner of Wildcat Golf Partners, which operates the 18-hole course at Arthur Pack Regional Park. “This is currently the only place with the new Musco flight tracker lighting system. It is the first of its kind. “
Pima County recently signed a new 10-year contract with Wildcat Golf Partners to continue managing the course, according to NRPR Assistant Director Robert Padilla. The company has been operating the golf course since 2003, but the course itself has been open since 1976.
Another priority is renovating the square’s tea boxes, which Mueller says have become deformed and lumpy over the years. Some of these repairs are already visible, including a new front tee on the 13th hole and renovated tees on the second and 16th holes. Mueller said the course plans to renovate more tee boxes annually.
“We are basically addressing some delayed maintenance issues that are long overdue,” he said.
The course also plans to convert its sand bunkers into grass bunkers, which Mueller says will still be a worthy challenge for golfers.
“Given the challenges of irrigation, the sand bunkers are difficult to maintain and they are too expensive to repair,” said Mueller.
“I think you will see many other courses go in this direction. We believe that beginners and higher handicap players will enjoy the transition, and intermediate to seasoned players will still be challenged. The overall aesthetics and playability should please everyone, so it’s a win-win situation. “
Visitors are likely to notice other small changes during the course. NRPR has re-roofed and repainted the clubhouse on the course and the toilets on the course, and completely new signage around the clubhouse will follow shortly.
“People will notice these improvements when they play out here,” said Mueller.
Visitors will notice another change before they even step on the route: the parking lot has been striped and re-paved, and small islands have been added.
“The improvements continue,” said Müller. “If the revenues allow, we’ll keep making them, and there are little things we can do around the property to make the experience better for people.”
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