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February 13, 2013

Territory Golf Course to undergo acreage change

DUNCAN — A decision to reduce the manicured acreage of The Territory Golf and Country Club’s championship golf course is a natural move and a beneficial adjustment.

  Plans call for the current 148 acres to be cut to 120 acres, Jeff Tyrrell, director of operations for the club, told members of the Duncan Rotary Club Wednesday. The reduction won’t affect play on the par 71, 7,100-yard layout, but it will enable the club to be better stewards of the land, to  trim labor costs and to reduce water necessary to maintain the course for quality play.

  “It takes 700,000 gallons of water per day,” Tyrrell explained. “Reducing our footprint simply makes good sense, particularly considering recent water challenges.”  A mutually beneficial agreement with an area rural water district – providing money for the district, water for the club – is being finalized.

   Even at 120 acres, the club will be larger than most. Golf courses in California and Arizona are limited to 95 acres.

  The Territory continues to maintain a lofty standing among quality facilities. It was recently named the fourth best course in Oklahoma by Golf Digest magazine, trailing only Southern Hills of Tulsa, Karsten Creek of Stillwater and Oak Tree Country Club of Edmond. It was listed as 35th best residential course in the United States by Golfweek magazine.

  Discussion about hosting a Web.com Tour event, formerly the Nationwide Tour, here is under way again. Keys to making application are solving potential water issues, keeping pristine the course for championship play and having adequate hotel space.

  Those factors are falling into place, Tyrrell said.

  Owned by Rick and Barbara Braught and designed by Randy Hackenkemper, The Territory opened in June 2004. It features an 18-hole course, a state-of-the-art practice facility, a 15,000-square foot putting green, a short game area, a driving range and three par 3 practice holes.

  Ancillary facilities include the Golf House with a pro shop and den-like 19th hole, the Prairie House for inside and outside dining and a carriage house for carts and storage. A zero entry resort-style pool, basketball and volleyball courts and a slide are other amenities. And Prospector’s Ridge is a unique residential area.

  “Unmatched service” is the hallmark of The Territory with an emphasis on “family friendly” events and activities for its 216 golf and 33 social members. There is a non-refundable $2,000 initiation fee with local monthly dues of $336 that include golf, cart fees, bag storage and range use.

  Tyrrell noted the ebb and flow of golf in recent years, highlighting the game’s white, male country club approach until 1996 when Tiger Woods burst on the scene, diversifying the player base and increasing course development.

  The economic downturn of 2008 caused a downturn in players and caused a number of courses to close. Recent trends have injected spectator fun, non-traditional competition and family involvement.

 

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