The 91-year-old Bristol, Conn., club’s membership wants a guarantee that if the property is sold, it would remain a golf course. The majority of members backed a plan to sell equity stakes in the club to keep it going, but only 50 of 200 were sold.
With other alternatives falling short, the cash-strapped Chippanee Golf Club is going on the market soon, the Bristol (Conn.) Press reported.
Greg Boulanger, the Bristol, Conn., club’s president, said that if it is sold, members want a guarantee that it would remain a golf course. “Everybody wants to keep it going,” he said.
Boulanger said the vast majority of members backed a plan to sell equity stakes in the club to keep it going in the face of a growing debt. But that hasn’t panned out, he said, so a sale is likely in the coming weeks, the Press reported.
Club officials have been talking for weeks with owners of nearby golf facilities and others who have shown they have the experience to provide Chippanee with a good chance at surviving the financial crunch that has left the 91-year-old institution facing a fiscal hole that so far totals less than $900,000, the Press reported.
Boulanger said there’s a possibility a small group of members with the means might band together to buy the club, but if that’s going to happen they need to act “very, very, very soon,” the Press reported.
Aware of its potential sale, brokers and buyers from as far away as China have contacted Boulanger about buying it. But, he said, members are eager to ensure the golf course remains available if that can be done, the Press reported.
Members had hoped they could sell 200 equity stakes in the club to members willing to pay $2,500 per share, but only about 50 were sold by the mid-October deadline, according to an October 15 memo from the club’s secretary, Robert Nadeau, to its members, the Press reported.
As a result, Nadeau wrote, the club’s leaders “will pursue the sale option” instead, the Press reported.
“It remains our goal to keep Chippanee Country Club a golfing entity and to make sure any future negotiations are conducted to protect the interest of our members and the value of our club,” Nadeau concluded.
Recognizing that the club’s finances were in distress, members authorized a task force to recommend options for the long haul. The task force presented three alternatives to members a month ago: to continue “as is” and raise fees “to meet the demands of our current business model,” to allow members to buy equity stakes or to pursue a sale “with the hope of maintaining the club as a golfing operation,” the Press reported.
Since the preferred option fell well short, the task force, officers and board members of the club are pursuing the club’s sale, Nadeau said.
The property is worth about $3 million, the Press reported.