Local Government

Golfers celebrate as Jones Golf Course opens for season

Cedar Rapids course reopens after uncertain fate

Victor Haan of Cedar Rapids selects a club before hitting from the tee on Hole 1 at Jones Golf Course on Saturday, May 13, 2017. Haan says he golfs at Jones 15 to 20 times each year. (Cliff Jette/The Gazette)
Victor Haan of Cedar Rapids selects a club before hitting from the tee on Hole 1 at Jones Golf Course on Saturday, May 13, 2017. Haan says he golfs at Jones 15 to 20 times each year. (Cliff Jette/The Gazette)
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CEDAR RAPIDS — It’s a new, first day at Jones Golf Course.

The Cedar Rapids course opened Saturday for the first time this season after a monthslong debate over potential closure, and some golfers were happy to be back.

“It’s wonderful the course reopened,” said Paul Steingreaber, 53, of Cedar Rapids.

City officials recommended closing Jones Golf Course — one of four city run courses — due to $1.1 million in losses at the city’s golf department over the last five years. Jones is considered to be responsible for $803,719 of that loss, due to repeated flooding of Prairie Creek.

However, the Cedar Rapids City Council changed course in an April 25 meeting and approved reopening the course for the year.

About 100 people signed up for tee times Saturday, according to Jones Golf Course staff.

While watching the debate continue over the past several months, Steingreaber said he kept his fingers crossed that city council members to change their minds.

“I sent some feedback to the council to reconsider, and I’m happy to see that it seems they did,” Steingreaber said.

Staff at the clubhouse, located at 2901 Fruitland Blvd. SW, and maintenance workers were busy Thursday preparing for the first golfers this weekend.

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A change to the business model is the elimination of league play this year, said Lisa Miller, golf operations manager for the city, in a previous Gazette article. Since other city courses still host league play, Jody Neuhaus, 48, of Hiawatha, said she’ll likely come to Jones more often this year to avoid the crowds.

“I like to have the opportunity to play all of the courses,” Neuhaus said. “Especially as season pass holders, it’s great to play all four courses. Jones adds variety to it.”

l Comments: (319) 368-8536; michaela.ramm@thegazette.com

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