Why Colorado Golf Courses Are Open During the COVID-19 Pandemic


COLORADO, United States – The state has advised golf courses on how to comply with the order to stay at home and continue operating.

On Wednesday morning, the state provided advice saying that the maintenance of the facilities is approved as essential, but that it must be open to play the required rules which must be followed.

“From a practical point of view, the most important thing is social removal and compliance with state and local guidelines on removal,” the state wrote in an email. “Functionally, that means no money collection, no sharing of golf carts, no touching of bags, clubs, balls or anything where the virus could be transmitted. Operators should get express approval from a local public authority that they comply with all social media. remove the directives in the current state and the local decrees in force. The burden of compliance really lies with the operators, and they could be closed, which is why it is so important that they work closely with their public health departments. “

Nearby, the Riverdale Golf Course in Brighton is open.

On Wednesday, there were enough cars parked that you could have mistaken for a grocery store parking lot.

“We think it’s an incredibly safe way to go out, get some fresh air for a few hours,” said Adams County spokesman Jim Siedlecki. “You don’t touch anything else. You get back in your car and go home. Note that when you look around this golf course, there is no one excited. “

The beginner of the golf course made the same announcement with each call to the first tee-box.

“Watch out golfers,” said the starter. “Please maintain your social distance at all times when you are on site. We would like to keep the golf course open. “

Adams County has implemented new golf course rules, including:

  • Pay online
  • Closed driving range
  • No carts
  • Don’t touch the sticks
  • The cups are turned over, so the ball is easily retrievable

“Tri-County Health has reviewed everything and they think if it is to be an acceptable use, our approach should be that which others should model,” said Siedlecki.

“We agree that golf courses will remain active as long as they practice appropriate social distancing,” said Dr. John Douglas, executive director of the Tri-County Health Department.

Tri-County Health has provided golf courses in Arapahoe and Douglas counties with similar rules adopted by Adams County.

Last week, when Tri-County issued its own home stay order, it specifically closed the golf courses. Once the statewide home stay order was issued, Tri-County quashed the local order. Statewide order keeps greens in a gray area.

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“I clearly understand that there may be mixed messages,” look at all these people, they are not at home, why are they not doing what they are supposed to do? “Said Douglas. “It is absolutely not a science. It’s an art to understand how we identify things. Staying locked up, mental health, is a problem. We are trying to find ways, I would not say creatively, but flexibly recognizing that. “

Governor Jared Polis (D-Colorado) repeatedly urged people to stay inside on Wednesday at his press conference.

“To save lives, you stay at home. “

“Stay at home to reduce the spread of the virus. “

“To honor those who work hard every day is to stay at home to the best of your ability. “

At 7:00 p.m. Wednesday evening, a spokesperson for the governor had not answered questions asking why statewide order is not more explicit with golf courses, and how golf is different from skiing. One of Polis’ first executive emergency decrees was the closure of ski resorts.

Besides non-golfers who send emails about why golf courses are open and why golf is essential, hardly anyone associated with golf would officially speak.

A well-known Colorado golf writer wrote an unpublished opinion piece entitled: Golfers Should Miss This Tee Time. In it, he wrote, “We need to be more concerned with the game itself than anyone’s right to play it at this historic and dangerous time. “

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