The Carol Johnson Poole Clubhouse at the Raleigh, N.C., university opened earlier this month after a year of construction. Before the clubhouse was built, the golf programs were housed in a series of trailers and had indoor hitting rooms in a structure that was originally designed to hold machinery, but now the clubhouse includes a golf pro shop and a restaurant.
After a year of construction, North Carolina State University’s new $6 million Carol Johnson Poole Clubhouse opened earlier this month, the Raleigh (N.C.)-based Technician reported.
The clubhouse opened in phases as the previous facilities were emptied starting in December, said Chip Watson, the General Manager and an assistant coach for the men’s golf team, the Technician reported.
Before the clubhouse was built, the golf programs were housed in a series of trailers and had indoor hitting rooms in a structure that was originally designed to hold machinery, Robert Wade, director of the NC State PGA Golf Management Program, said.
Though the structure was refurbished, Wade said it did not compare to having a real clubhouse, the Technician reported.
“It was kind of like trying to teach physics without a physics lab,” Wade said. “There’s lots of theory, but until you have a place like that, you can’t really enhance the learning.”
Watson was also relieved to finally have a place near the golf course available for the golf teams to use, the Technician reported.
“We kind of lived in the trunk of our cars,” Watson said. “But now we have a place that’s right there where we practice.”
The clubhouse has both a golf pro shop that is run by Carolina’s Golf Group and a restaurant run by Player’s Retreat. There are also several groups benefiting from the new clubhouse, including the PGA program of the College of Natural Resources, the turfgrass program, and the NC State women’s and men’s golf teams, according to Watson and Wade.
“We needed a place that brought all the user groups together for the golf course,” Watson said. “And it’s exciting to have this facility with all of the different groups here.”
The College of Natural Resources has an office and a teach-and-learning area at the new clubhouse for its PGA program, Watson said, which was designed for students who want to be golf course managers or operators.
The turf grass program has a large classroom at the new clubhouse that can hold about 50 students. The men’s and women’s golf teams have a lounge, locker rooms and coach’s offices on the bottom floor of the clubhouse, the Technician reported.
“The golf course was good, but without the clubhouse it wasn’t complete,” Watson said.
The clubhouse has an area for a launch monitor, which will allow golfers to take practice swings and get feedback from a computer radar about their smash factor, golf swing, speed and swing angle, the Technician reported.
The building has received a lot of traffic, Watson said, and the covered veranda area, complete with an outdoor fireplace, has already become a hotspot to have a late-night snack while watching golfers finish games, the Technician reported.
A series of events are being scheduled to showcase the clubhouse, including an open house for people who donated money and a media open house leading up to a grand opening event with Chancellor Randy Woodson when the weather becomes warmer, the Technician reported.
“They are going to be shocked and amazed by how awesome it is,” Watson said.
“We welcome any student to come over and try it out and have an experience to see why people fall in love with the sport,” Wade said.