The University of North Dakota tried to sell the land before learning that would go against the wishes of its donor. The course will now reopen to provide golf along with other activities including archery, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and disc golfing. It will also be used for the school’s unmanned aircraft program.
The University of North Dakota (UND) has announced that the Ray Richards Golf Course in Grand Forks, N.D. will open again next season, station WDAY of Fargo, N.D. reported through its Inforum website.
The school closed the course two years ago as part of a round of budget cuts and was in the process of selling the land, WDAY reported, but that plan was halted after it was learned that a sale would be against the wishes of Ray Richards, who donated much of the land.
Since opening decades ago, the course has struggled to make a profit, WDAY reported. But this time around, the university hopes to make it more versatile, by also using the land for other activities such as archery, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and even disc golfing.
The golf course needs about a quarter of a million dollars in upgrades and likely won’t be operational until the fall of 2019, WDAY reported.
The school also plans to develop partnerships with its Wellness Center to get more students and faculty to use the property, and the land will also be used for the school’s unmanned aircraft systems program.
“We wanted to keep it as a golf course, but we also wanted to make sure we were supporting our academic mission,” Meloney Linder, UND’s Vice President for Marketing and Communications. “[The unmanned aircraft program] is something we are known for, and this is an opportunity for us to build in an area of excellence.”
C&RB reported earlier this year on how North Dakota’s emergence as a leader in drone technology helped to foster a pilot program for deliveries of snacks and beverages by drone to golfers while they are playing their rounds (https://clubandresortbusiness.com/friday-filmfest-kings-walk-gc-to-use-drone-deliveries-for-on-course-refreshments/)
To see WDAY’s video report on the reopening of the Richards course, go to https://www.inforum.com/incoming/924947-Ray-Richards-Golf-Course-to-reopen