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Club Amenities in 2022

Use of club facilities and programs has ballooned during the last year as members are seeking a safe haven where they can socialize with friends in an upscale, familiar environment that caters to the entire family. Enhanced youth sports programs are on the rise as clubs go far beyond traditional golf, tennis and swim programs to improve fitness levels of children at the club. Many gated communities are adding fully staffed medical clinics for the convenience of residents as well as their own staff.

Scioto Country Club, in Columbus, Ohio, where Jack Nicklaus learned golf, continues to produce excellent golfers through its junior golf program. The club’s traditional program of 150 junior golfers was recently enhanced by adding “rising stars” and “elite” components. These college golf team-inspired programs are led by Chris Yoder, a former collegiate player at Wake Forest. After his playing days, Yoder became a Wake Forest assistant coach before joining the golf staff at Ohio State. His personal experience made him ideal for creating this program. He and Junior Golf Committee Chairman Scott Miller worked hard to roll out this program last year.

Yoder sets up practice schedules, expectation levels and group lessons with the kids, who enjoy a junior locker area and team room where they can see their goals for the week and hang out before or after practice. As part of the team, participants receive branded shirts and golf bags to set them apart. They also earn a distinctive pink head cover with the club’s logo when they win a tournament. In addition to practice sessions with the coach and the club’s Top 100 Instructor Don Sargent, per Golf Digest, the team also travels to play in events throughout the summer. Their uniforms and personalized golf bags instill pride in the Scioto team. The program not only encompasses on-course work, but also the mental aspects of the game.

The program is several steps above what is offered at local schools and golf training centers. An event in the summer pairs the youngest players with the oldest so they can experience what it is like to play with a college player. The success of the junior program was so strong that the rising star program is now comprised of 45 middle school partici- pants, and the elite team of junior high and high school students has 14 participants.

Scioto also arranged for nine college coaches to hold a panel discussion at the club to talk about their golf programs and the process of recruiting so kids and parents would know what to expect. Thus far, every child on these two club teams has made their middle school, high school or college golf teams.

Greg Wolf, general manager, says, “The success is measured by the growth of these young people, not only on the course but in their confidence levels. We have had incredible growth in the number of players playing in junior events across the country.”


The former 4,000 square-foot fitness center at Scioto was transformed into a family center, which opened in Septem- ber. The club schedules supervised times when children can use the facility and unsupervised times when only adults can

use it. The facility features two TrackMan simulators for practice or playing different golf courses including their own, but also offers the ability to play Top Golf-style games as well as other games such as foot soccer, baseball, soccer, hockey and lacrosse. The rest of the facility offers high-end games targeted for 10-18-year-olds such as shuffleboard, pop-a- shot, pool, multiple ping pong games, darts, air hockey, foosball, skeeball and multiple old-style video games and pinball experiences. It also has several televisions for gaming, with Xbox or PS5 experiences. Wolf elaborated, “We are finding that the adults are using the facility more and more during the day while school is in session or later in the evening. Groups are playing golf, shooting pool or playing ping-pong. It is quite the space and has given members a place to go in the wintertime. I had one of the members comment to me that their three teenage kids want to come to the club in the evenings instead of staying home. Food and drink are available from our clubhouse. It is located right off our pool deck, so it should be quite the hit next year when the pool season is in session.”

Wolf said that none of this was done with the purpose of generating any revenue, but rather to enhance offerings and the member experience. Suffice to say, revenues will certain- ly be generated as families are flocking to this new amenity.


Atlantic Beach Country Club in Atlantic Beach, Fla., has an approach that engages young people and has brought more children and their families to use the club facilities. Director

of Sports Beth Diaz used her background with a master’s degree in exercise science and as a Level 3 TPI instructor and a strength and conditioning coach to create the Long Term Athletic Development Program.

Children as young as four years old are evaluated to be part of the program that meets twice a week to work on fundamental movement skills, strength and conditioning to benefit them in whichever sport they choose to participate. Diaz said, “Too often kids specialize in one sport and risk overuse injuries and burn out.” This program conditions their entire bodies so the benefit is universal. Evaluations are conducted every six months and participants are rewarded with a different color wristband as they progress through the program–another motivation to keep them interested in continuing. The bands also promote friendly competition as children advance through different levels.

Staff professionals are the trainers and conditioners for the program, which benefits them with additional work and revenue. The results are very apparent not only to coaches, but more importantly, to parents.

The rewards for clubs to improve the health and fitness levels of the whole family will come in the form of loyal members who utilize the programs and facilities and recommend the club to their friends.


Desert Mountain in Scottsdale, Ariz., is a private residential club and community comprised of 8,300 acres with more than 2,000 properties and seven golf courses. Its newest amenity is the medical clinic, which will be staffed and ready to serve both members and staff five days a week. CEO Damon DiOrio, CCM, CCE, explained the clinic would be staffed and funded 40 hours a week by a physician or physician’s assistant from a local health care provider. With four exam rooms and a fully equipped lab, the clinic will offer many routine tasks that are typically scheduled in a physician’s office with the convenience of never leaving the property. Everything from routine visits to inoculations to drawing blood can all be performed at the clinic.

Desert Mountain team members may also make use of the clinic, which DiOrio believes will assist with lowering the number of sick days and is an added benefit for recruiting.

Another bonus will be reducing the number of times team members visit urgent care or emergency rooms, which will be a positive factor when renewing health insurance.

Clubs across the country continue to find ways to make the club experience unique and impactful by offering services and amenities for every age group. These non-traditional enhancements to the membership create loyal members who see the club as an indispensable aspect of their lifestyle