After recovering from a devastating fire in record time, Bogey Hills CC is already posting big new scores.
After the spectacular fire that destroyed the threestory wooden clubhouse of Bogey Hills Country Club in St. Charles, Mo. in February 2017 (flames from the blaze reached as high as 50 feet, and more than 50 firefighters from four departments were needed to put out the inferno), reports on how it started were finally made available earlier this year, after an intensive investigation that included the Missouri state fire marshal’s office, because of the size of the loss.
But by the time the final reports came out, Angel Walters Likens—Bogey Hills’ President and General Manager, and part of the third generation of the Walters family to be involved with running the club since 1962—had no inclination for spending much time going through them. In part this was because she already knew that the likely cause was an electrical malfunction. But the bigger reason was that from the moment they first stood and watched the building burn on that cold February night, Walters Likens and others from the Bogey Hills membership, Board and staff had shown that they would be much more concerned about the effect of the fire than with its cause.
In May of this year, Bogey Hills unveiled the physical evidence of that effect, with the grand opening of its new clubhouse. And through the first season of its renewed operation, the positive effects of the for-profit club’s determination to quickly turn the shock of the fire into a successful rebirth have already been demonstrated through not only a rapid return to lively activity levels, but also strong membership gains and bookings for future business.
“It was hard, and surreal at first,” says Walters Likens. “I grew up with the club, as did a lot of our members, so there was a lot of disbelief that it was all happening and that the clubhouse could actually be gone, just like that.”
But that initial reaction, she adds, was almost immediately replaced by the realization that losing the clubhouse did not mean losing the club—and that in fact the fire offered an opportunity to start an exciting new chapter for Bogey Hills.