Golf course purchase to be discussed at city meeting

CNJ staff photo: Kevin Wilson Christian Fontanilla, 11, of Clovis, practices his chip shot Monday afternoon at Chaparral Country Club. The city is considering purchasing the club.

Kevin Wilson

Clay Bracken said it would break his heart if the current Clovis Municipal golf course was to shut down.

“I grew up golfing there,” Bracken said.

But, as he’s weighed the possibility since the city first expressed interest in buying the Chaparral Country Club, he’s in the camp that it might be the best thing to do.

“I think at this point in time … the city owned course is the right move to make,” Bracken said.

The courses are the topics of conversation during a special meeting of the Clovis City Commission. The meeting, set for 5:15 p.m. Thursday at the north annex of the Clovis-Carver Public Library.

If the city does purchase the country club, first opened in 1964, it would shutter the current municipal course as part of a master parks plan. Renovations would include additional youth sports fields, walking trails, a splash park and upgrades to the Youth Recreation Building at the corner of Seventh and Sycamore streets.

“That final decision has not been made,” Clovis Mayor Gayla Brumfield said. “We’re having the town hall meeting, to honestly decide to move forward or not.

“We believe in getting the information out there because there’s so much misinformation.”

The renovations would be paid for through funds in a .0625 percent gross receipts tax rate dedicated to parks. Monies from that tax are currently paying off bonds that expired in 2013 to make upgrades to various parks and build a pool at Potter Park.

“We’re able to do something to Potter, to Dennis Chavez” by refinancing bonds, Brumfield said. “Mainly, the big deal will be at Hillcrest.”

Jack Nuttall of Clovis has golfed at the country club for about 13 years.

“I think it’s fine,” Nuttall said of a potential purchase. “I think it’s probably good for everybody involved.”

Bracken said he loves the country club, and he’s been a member there for about 25 years. However, he said that while he believes Clovis has a good quantity of golfers, history has shown that the community has had a tough time supporting the country club model.

If the municipal course is shut down, Bracken said he’d like to at least see a “par 3” style course to help keep foster the sport for kids.