Back and Better Than Ever
Thanks to community volunteers, an improved Links at Brick Landing is open for business.
Ken McGill, president of Community Partners Golf LLC, urges golfers to check out the multiple improvements, specifically re-sprigging of the greens, at the Links at Brick Landing in Ocean Isle Beach. The golf course reopened in mid-August after a 10-week closure.
“We are very happy with the results of this process,” McGill says. “We are pleased to know that we are offering these great new putting surfaces as we move into our busy season of late summer and fall.” He believes the greens are “almost perfect.”
The improvements include:
Sunday Ultra-Dwarf Bermuda grass, a perfect match for the sand-based soil
Extensive tree trimming to allow more sunlight and air to come through the greens
Re-sodding of tee box areas
Irrigation system repairs
The grounds crew, under the supervision of Scott Santee, did the work.
“Our excellent staff has worked hard to accomplish all this during our summer suspension,” McGill says.
Trey Maughan, manager of golf operations, moved from Kansas City, Missouri, a year ago to take the job because he “wanted to be part of the turnaround. We’re back better than ever,” he says. “The course is in really good shape and is only going to get better. We are spending the money in the right places to make things work.” He explains that some people comment that the greens are slow. “We know that, and we tell them [it’s because of the re-sprigging].”
“It’s a friendly golf course and very playable,” says Steve Brower, director of golf. “We’re all vested in making this a good, friendly place, and we have great support from the community.”
That is obvious when people realize that back on January 1, 2020, the owner of the course closed it. The residents of Brick Landing Plantation, however, decided to take action. They formed Community Partners Golf LLC and bought the course. Dedicated golfers, the residents volunteered to refurbish it and in November 2020 it reopened. More work, though, was necessary to attract golfers, so Community Partners closed it in May 2021 to continue improvements.
McGill and his wife, Cathy, who heads the 9-hole Ladies Play, have been Brick Landing Plantation residents for 13 years, and he says keeping the course open is “a labor of love.”
Brower, who moved to Brick Landing Plantation with his wife, Vicki, eight years ago, emphasizes that all residents involved with keeping the course open are volunteers.
“I enjoy learning about rebuilding a golf course and helping do what I can,” he says. Vicki designed the new logo and assists in designing promotional materials.
Those associated with the course marvel at the scenic views, the towering trees lining the fairways and the wildlife on the Intracoastal Waterway.
Bill and Barb Rittner hadn’t golfed since they moved to Carolina Shores two years ago and chose Links at Brick Landing as the first course to try.
“I like the scenery, the condition of the course and the people,” Bill says. The couple plans to look into membership. The course offers Gold, Silver and Bronze memberships with various options.
“The superintendent can do anything he wants to make play challenging,” Maughan says. “He will ‘trick’ the course. He won’t make it overly hard but will make it overly weird. If he wants to leave his tractor parked on the green, golfers will have to play around it. It will be just a fun, weird event.” The plan is to make this an annual attraction.
“We want to make this a sustainable course for the foreseeable future,” McGill says. “We want to keep improving from year-to-year, so that it’s one of the top courses around here. It started out that way years and years ago when it first was begun, and we want to bring it back to that level.”
Maughan says that another goal is to make it an asset for the community and then the county. “Golf is at an all-time high right now,” he says. “This golf course is well positioned to handle this upturn in the market.”
McGill adds: “We are now fully ‘open for business’ and we are seeing a good response from our members and the larger golf community in Brunswick County and beyond. I like that it’s an integral part of this community.”