Golf on the Outer Banks remains another way to social distance, exercise

[photo courtesy NGCOA]

Schools are closed. One can’t dine in their favorite restaurant, as of 5 p.m. Wednesday you can’t get a hair cut, and the movie theaters are off limits. But a round of golf is still an option.

The eight courses you can find between the Outer Banks and lower Currituck County are still open for play, and the courses are taking a number of precautions.

At the very least, carts will be thoroughly sanitized after each use. It’s not uncommon to see rakes removed from the sand traps and players have been encouraged to leave the pin in.

Several courses tout on their website and Facebook pages additional safety precautions encouraged by the National Golf Course Owners Association.

The coronavirus situation has put a dent in course business, but until the pandemic news hit closer to home, the number of rounds had increased.

“With the nice weather we had, it was a fairly mild winter so play has been a little bit up,” said Doug Kinser, Director of Golf at The Pointe Golf Club and the Carolina Club.

Kinser noted an uptick in the number of players who’ve requested a solo cart. He also said they make sure each cart gets a new scorecard pencil after each cart use. Most courses have embraced very similar safety measures.

Duck Woods, a member-owned course in Southern Shores, did add one outside the box precaution.

“We’ve asked the players to forego the traditional handshake before and after a round,” said Duck Woods pro Aaron Palen. “We suggest to tip the cap or tap the club or something like that.”

A cart to yourself or walking the course are two excellent methods of social distancing, and of course the walking option helps you to get exercise in while the gyms and YMCA are closed.

Holly Ridge in Harbinger, at under 6000 yards, is the most walking-friendly course in the area. They also have the only lighted driving range between Dare and Currituck counties.

Health experts have been united in the belief there are risks associated with sharing any public place.

Potential golfers should be aware of any pre-existing medical conditions they may have and should follow prescribed social distancing and hygenic protocols while on the course.

The current situation has forced courses to cancel or postpone many upcoming events, outings and tournaments.

Kilmarlic Golf Club pro Bryan Sullivan best summed up the current state of golf in the area.

“We’re trying to be safe and we want everyone to be safe,” Sullivan said.

Outer Banks area golf courses

  • Carolina Club in Grandy
  • The Pointe Colf Club in Powells Point
  • Holly Ridge in Harbinger
  • Kilmarlic in Powells Point
  • Sea Scape Golf Links in Kitty Hawk
  • Duck Woods in Southern Shores
  • Nags Head Golf Links in Nags Head
  • Currituck Club in Corolla