ClubCorp acquired the private Avondale, Pa., property in 2012, and has since converted from rye to bentgrass and repaired 56 bunkers, with additional improvements planned for the near future.
Hartefeld National, the private golf club in Avondale, Pa., is marking its 20th anniversary this year. And with new management and major improvements over the last few years, the focus is as much on the club’s bright future as it is a celebration of its past, the Newtown Square (Pa.)-based Main Line Today reported.
Back in 2012, Hartefeld was acquired by ClubCorp. In three years, Hartefeld has undergone close to $2 million in course and clubhouse improvements. The most prominent transformation has been the conversion of tees and fairways from rye to bent grass, as well as repairing all 56 bunkers, Today reported.
According to Frank LaVacca, Hartefeld’s head golf pro, the bent-grass switchover has been beneficial in many ways. “Rye is a cooler season grass—it needs a lot more water and it’s not the best for our hot, humid summers,” he said. “The new bent grass is less dependent on the weather, less of a maintenance issue for us and is more attractive to golfers from a playability standpoint.”
Attracting top players and competitive tournaments is still a major focus at Hartefeld. In the past the course hosted high-end, pro events such as the Senior PGA Tour’s Bell Atlantic Classic and the Jim Furyk-hosted Exelon Invitational. Hartefeld’s transformation and new administration are attracting a variety of professional events, including the 2014 Patterson Cup qualifier, a Golf Association of Philadelphia Winter Series event, an International Junior Golf Tour event, and the Connelly Cup Head-Pro Championship, Today reported.
“One of our main goals has been to get the course back to the platform it deserves, both for our members and playing professionals,” said LaVacca. “Whenever new management comes into play there is some apprehension, but the atmosphere and camaraderie here is quite high since we came in and said, ‘Here is what we are going to do to make things better,’ and we have accomplished that.”
Hartefeld has other improvements planned in the near future, mostly in the facilities areas, and hopes to have course designer Tom Fazio back for a 20th-anniversary celebration later in 2015, Today reported.