Dakota County beat: Parkview golfers have said goodbyes

  • Article by: SUSAN FEYDER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 9, 2013 - 6:27 PM

The recent news that Parkview Golf Club would reopen for a final and truncated season came too late for the many summer leagues and programs that have used Eagan’s only 18-hole course for decades.

For the past few months they’ve scrambled to find new places to play as plans took shape to close the course to make way for a large housing project. The City Council greenlighted the development about three weeks ago despite loud opposition from neighbors and fans of the course.

The reopening offers a brief respite for people who live near the course on streets with names such as Pebble Beach and St. Andrews. Many of them had protested that the new homes would ruin their open green space.

It’s a different story for the 400-plus players in Parkview’s 17 summer leagues, said Ed Erickson, a member of a senior men’s league that had played at Parkview on Wednesday mornings. They’ve already scattered to other south-metro courses.

“You have to pick a course fairly early, so you can negotiate a reduced rate for a bringing in a certain number of players and committing to a certain number of times all season long,” he said. “A lot of courses are pretty filled up with leagues, so if you don’t lock one up early you might not have a place to play.”

Erickson said some leagues that had played at Parkview have disbanded. His group will play at Southern Hills in Farmington, but he won’t be there. The regulation course is too long for the 86-year-old, and several of his group’s “super seniors” who have opted to drop out, he says.

Erickson said Parkview is shorter and less challenging, ideal for seniors, women and younger players. Mark Wanous, boys’ golf coach at Eastview High School in Apple Valley, agrees that the course has been a good place for kids learning how to play. His varsity team holds tryouts there.

For several years, Wanous has helped run the Dakota County Junior Golf Camp at Parkview for second-graders to high school players. This summer it will be at Rich Valley in Rosemount. “It’s kind of a trek,” he said. “Parkview has been part of all our lives.”

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