Community Update: Anticipation Grows as Sand Valley Golf Resort Nears Opening

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Anticipation Grows as Sand Valley Golf Resort Nears Opening

Mayor Zach Vruwink, right and Community Development Director Adam Tegen, middle, tour Sand Valley. Photos by Jesse Austin/WRCM. See more photos here.

A view of one of the fairways on the Sand Valley Course.

I recently had the pleasure of taking in a construction tour of Sand Valley Golf Resort with the City’s Director of Community Development Adam Tegen and the media. Our preview ramped up anticipation for the opening of Sand Valley’s first golf course in just two weeks, on May 2. Mark your calendars for Community Day, May 1st! See more photos here.

Glen Murray, Sand Valley general manager, and construction lead Frank Cauger, led us on a detailed journey into founder Mike Keiser’s vision of bringing to the United States the golf experience one would expect of Scottish seaside links: sand dunes, windy playing conditions, unusual bounces from firm fairways and a variety of strategic playing options. He and Cauger also brought to life in vivid terms the large, elegantly designed clubhouse, lodge, bar and overnight accommodations that are now in the final stages of construction, but will be up and in operation in June.

A few fun facts we picked up along the way:

  • 2016 preview golf welcomed golfers from 10 different countries and over 40 states across USA;
  • Sand Valley is partnering with Aspirus to offer sports massage services to guests;
  • It is expected that 70 percent of the estimated 300 employees will be local residents and,
  • The Sand Valley team “dares” visitors to find essential infrastructure such as power generators – such support is being subtly incorporated into the landscape design to maximize the unique golfing experience.

A second course, Mammoth Dunes, crafted by renowned Scottish designer David Kidd, is already under construction, and will open in 2018. In addition, the Keiser organization already has begun planning for a third, par-three course at the resort, as a “gateway” venue for beginning and casual golfers, also scheduled to open in 2018.

Of course, a major element of the excitement surrounding this 1,700-acre project is the economic benefits it may to bring to our area. Fortunately, with other Keiser-family led golf resort properties in existence, we have the opportunity to learn from any economic growth elements of them. It would be our objective to have economic impact reach the Wisconsin Rapids community which I will address in my next Community Update, next week.

Thanks for reading!

Mayor Zach Vruwink

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