Men’s club still teeing off after 50 years
Steamboat Springs — Hal Noyes bent down and teed his golf ball up on the first hole at the Steamboat Golf Club.
He straightened and with one quick swing sent the ball rocketing down the fairway.
He did it Wednesday, as he had done so many times before, playing away the afternoon in the men’s club at the West Steamboat course.
“Since 1992,” he said.
The men’s club has actually been around even longer than that, since the mid-1960s, and today’s members are intent on keeping the weekly golfing club rolling.
Chris Hadlock said there are currently about 50 active members who play a round of golf Wednesdays at Steamboat Golf Club.
Those who show up for a 12:30 p.m. tee time with the group play 18 holes. Others — “the ones with jobs,” Don Gleason, club vice president, said with a laugh — play nine holes later in the afternoon.
“I played a lot when I was younger, and I had a drop off for a lot of things like raising a family,” said Gleason, preparing to tee off behind Noyes early Wednesday afternoon.
“Now I’m back out here,” he said. “It’s fun to get to know everybody and playing with different people every week. That builds the camaraderie.”
Hadlock joined the club 12 years ago and said he got roped into serving as treasurer three years ago.
Now he’s president, and Wednesday, that gave him the honor of presenting one of the club’s biggest honors: the trophy from a recent win over its rivals from a Grand Lake team.
The club takes part in two competitive tournaments against players from other clubs in the region, and so far, that’s worked out pretty well for Steamboat players this summer.
They’re coming off a win in a two-event showdown with Grand Lake.
The clubs meet twice, once on each squad’s home course. Steamboat won handily, 19-5, earlier this month when they competed at Steamboat Golf Club. Then they played to a draw when the matchup shifted last week to Grand Lake, giving Steamboat players the overall win.
“It’s a deep grass place, so if you hit your ball off line you’re in trouble,” Hadlock said of Grand Lake. “It’s a tough course, and they know it better than we do.”
They also have a competition coming up later this season against players from Craig.
For Hadlock, those tournaments are a key motivator for his involvement in the club.
“I love the competitive nature of golf,” he said. “I play my best rounds when it matters, and the men’s club gives me a way to have those tournaments available to me.”
It’s not just the competition, though. He said it’s the people.
“I respect these guys because every one of them plays real golf. You don’t see any cheating,” he said. “I’m 10 years younger than a lot of these guys, and 15 or 20 years younger than some. But I’m also 15 or 20 years older than a lot of these guys. We have a range from 25 to 80.
“You wouldn’t think you’d be friends with some of those 80-year-old guys, but one of them was one of my best friends in life,” Hadlock explained. “He and I just kind of found a spark together, so that’s why I’m here, for the camaraderie.”
The club is open to golfers of all ability levels and men of all ages, and a women’s club also exists, playing on Tuesdays. It costs $70 for the year and $15 per round for Steamboat Golf Club members, $30 for non-members. For more information, contact the Steamboat Golf Club at 970-879-4295.
The club is also playing host to a tournament Aug. 28 that’s open to all players. It’s a three-person scramble over 27 holes, three laps around the nine-hole course. It will cost $100 for non-members at Steamboat Golf Club and $65 for members. One of each trio’s players must be a woman, and all three will each tee off on an equal number of holes, nine.
Contact Don Gleason at 949-201-6538 for more information.
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