Thursday, February 7, 2008

Death of a golf course

The Ravines was once one of Jacksonville's premiere golf courses. Designed by Mark McCumber back in the early eighties, it was ranked in the top (i think) 20 courses in the country. It was a spectacular course, with rolling hills, streams running through it, and wonderful old oak trees overhanging the fairways. I had the opportunity to play it a couple of times, and I was always struck by how much of an impression the experience left on you. There was this one hole where you actually drove your ball down into a ravine (thus the name) and you had to ring a little bell because you couldn't see the hole down below, and you had to alert the other golfers you were teeing off. Anyway, the course has fallen into disrepair (it's actually closed) and the homeowners are pissed that ownership, and maintennance is in limbo (has been for a few years now). A recent auction for the property produced no buyer, and the market doesn't seem to be right for anyone to purchase it anyway.

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