31 August 2012

Military golf courses

"Welcome to Cole Park Golf Club at Fort Campbell, KY. Cole Park is one of the finest golfing facilities in the Army. Our goal is to provide golfers in our Army community with everything they desire in a top-notch golf facility... We have an 18-hole Championship course that covers over 350 acres of prime real estate..."
The description is of Cole Park Golf Club at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, just one of hundreds of military golf courses situated around the world.
Back in 1975, Senator William Proxmire (D-Wisconsin) decried the fact that the Department of Defense spent nearly $14 million each year to maintain and operate 300 military-run golf courses scattered across the globe. In 1996, the weekly television series America's Defense Monitor noted that "Pentagon elites and high government officials [were still] tee-ing off at taxpayer expense" at some "234 golf courses maintained by the U.S. armed forces worldwide."..

Take the Eaglewood Golf Courses at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia. In 2004, the Pentagon paid out more than $352,000 to George Golf Design to refurbish its two courses... George Golf Design considerately worked on the courses one at a time, so that local duffers would not be left linkless. This was of critical importance since if both courses were out of commission, Virginia would have been left with only nine military golf facilities (navy, five; army,three; Marine Corps, one) with a total of fourteen courses...

[In 2004], according to DoD documents, the U.S. Army paid $71,614 to the Arizona Golf Resort -- located in sunny Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. A Saudi homage to the American Southwest that claims to offer the "only residential western expatriate golf resort in Riyadh with activities for all ages," the resort actually boasts an entire entertainment complex, complete with a water-slide-enhanced megapool, gym, bowling alley, horse stables, roller hockey rink, arcade, amphitheater, restaurant, and even a cappuccino bar -- not to mention the golf course and a driving range.
From a 2008 article at AlterNet (one doubts that anything has changed during the Obama administration).  At the Military Golf Course Guide, you can find a list of golf courses sorted by service, by state, and by country.


  1. At Fort Carson, Colorado, the greens fees at their Mountain Shadows golf course not only covers the cost of maintaining the course, but also funds many additional morale, welfare, and recreational activities and events for the Soldiers and their families.

  2. second what Doug said. The reason I know this was I had to do review of military golf course's ledgers. While there are reduced prices for LOWER ENLISTED, senior leaders have to pay more. the remainder is made up by retires AND THE GENERAL PUBLIC, which, on most courses, have the right to be there.

    But go ahead and continue to crap on the military if you want. Protecting your right to be an elitist asshole is one of the reasons I continue to serve.

    1. Am I also an elitist asshole if I decry public funding for something like, say, healthcare? One wonders how many lives $14 million could save.

      But keep on putting, sweetheart.

    2. So the reason you continue to serve is not the golf amenities? I am glad to hear it. Sell'em off.

  3. I know of quite a few universities that have fairly deluxe golf facilities as well. Also taxpayer-funded.

    What, no outrage?

    1. I have doubts about your claim. When I was in Gainesville, the University of Florida had one of the best university-owned golf courses in the country - most of them btw are at private schools - because we had a top golf program. The Mark Bostick Golf Course had millions of dollars of upgrades and improvements then, and there was lots of publicity that all of this money came from private sources mostly alumni (several pro golfers) and supporters and companies making golf products. NONE of it was from state taxpayers.

      Now its your turn. Name a university that you know of thats supported by state funds where the money for the golf course came from taxpayers.

  4. Replies
    1. I thought of this thread when I saw an article in the StarTribune today about the problems with the University of Minnesota's golf course:


      The course is over 80 years old and inadequate for today's golfers - it needs to be upgraded.
      "If Kaler gives the renovation his OK, the project would proceed through the university's capital planning process, which prioritizes projects.
      The university must be sure it can raise private funds to cover the project's cost, Rinehart said. The May proposal notes $10.9 million in verbal commitments, including several million from Bloomington-based Toro Co., which sells turf and irrigation systems and equipment, for things such as "access to facility for research." The university redacted from the document other specific "revenue sources," saying that such donor data is private."

      I'm glad to see the upgrade will be done using private funds, not taxpayer money (although I suppose the gifts will be tax-deductible for the givers).


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