Golf and COVID-19: Latest news on course operations

UPDATED September 29, 2020 — Enthusiasm for playing golf continues to be impressive heading into October on the mainland United States. Early reports from various outlets suggest another record-breaking month when September wraps up.

Hawaii has been a rare state that hasn't enjoyed the lift of mainland states due to the state's 14-day quarantine for all out-of-state arrivals in places for the entire summer. Good news for golfers as cool weather creeps in, however: travel without a 14-day quarantine will be allowed beginning October 15. It can't come soon enough for many golf courses and resorts that have either been closed or have significantly reduced operations. Click here for Golf Advisor Sr. Managing Editor Brandon Tucker's update on what the latest guidelines mean for golf travel to Hawaii.

It appears at least one famous course in Hawaii won't make it to the tourism reopening. Ko'Olau Golf Course, the infamously difficult Oahu facility, will cease operations on September 30, according to a report by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. The 240-acre facility is owned by the First Presbyterian Church of Honolulu, who told the paper course staff had asked to terminate the lease early due to COVID-19.

Golf courses were not on the essential activities list in March when the state went into its first lockdown and all but a handful of defiant privately-owned courses complied with the ordered and suspensed play. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell issued a second stay-at-home- order August 23 which also did not have golf on the exempt list, and many courses, including Oahu's municipal courses, closed a second time.

For now, many Hawaii golf courses remain temporarily closed or are operating on a limited basis until demand picks up once tourists begin to arrive once more. Travel to Hawaii in August was down 98% year over year.

Watch the latest GolfNow Industry Weekly Report for September 29:

GolfNow Industry Weekly Report for September 29

Is your golf course open? We are compiling the latest news on city, county and statewide shelter-in-place declarations and social distancing measures and how it relates to golf operations. The following Google spreadsheet has our latest news of city, county and statewide golf course suspensions or reopenings.

How to play golf safely during the COVID-19 pandemic

Many medical experts believe that golf is one of the safest activities you can participate in during the current outbreak as long as you take proper precautions. These include social distancing with the other golfers at the course and in your group, not sharing a golf cart unless it is with an immediate family member you live with, not shaking hands after the round and not socializing in the clubhouse afterwards. US governing bodies revealed new "Back 2 Golf" guidelines on May 5th that share best practices for golf course operators and players. See their recommendations here.

Golf Course Operators

Headlines archive

Cleveland.com: Exceptional golf summer in northeast Ohio
Tokatee spared thus far in Oregon fires
USGA announces second Golf House in Pinehurst
Delaware's Rookery North Announces permanent closure
Denver's City Park Golf Course officially reopens

Pandemic set to give Texas course best year ever

Endwell Greens Extends Closure To Entire Facility Due To COVID Cases

Bozeman Business Boom: Why more people are teeing it up at local golf courses during COVID-19

Possible COVID-19 exposure at Wisconsin Rapids golf course

Heritage Oaks Golf Course temporarily closes

Local golfers still playing around coronavirus threats

Albuqurque courses experiencing huge rounds increases in 2020

Vail Resorts decides to close Michigan's Mt. Brighton Golf Course permanently

67 employees at Georgia club test positive for COVID-19, closes club

Rabid demand at Aspen Golf Club as tee sheet books out in 3 minutes

Jack Nicklaus reveals he and Barbara had COVID-19 in March

Hanover Country Club closes after 121 years

Northern Michigan course closed due to employee's positive test

Meriden, CT courses doing record rounds

PGA Tour: No fans, Pro-Ams for rest of 2020

Record rounds reported on Utah golf courses

California's Elkins Ranch closing permanently on Labor Day

Colorado's Keystone Resort only operating one of two courses this summer

What it's currently like playing golf at Pebble Beach Golf Resort

Members pitch in to save Scotland's Brora Golf Club in 2020

Planning a golf trip this summer? Here are 10 things to consider

These top-rated golf courses still haven't reopened

High-quality muni golf coming to D.C. featuring Hanse, Doak and Welling input

First PGA Tour player tests positive at event

NGF: Military, municipal, casino courses still not open

Atlanta-area course will turn into a public course every Tuesday


• (6/13) Yale Golf Course closed until the end of July

•(6/12) Furor over continued closure of New York City golf courses
• (6/8) Tee time intervals are wider, but rounds booked still up YoY

• (6/7) R&A launches £7 mllion COVID-19 relief fund for golf courses

• (6/7) Ohio events including Memorial, Marathon will allow spectators

• (6/4) New normal at Honolulu muni Ala Wai, others

• (6/4) Scotsman: Guidelines for Scotland golf course reopenings

•(6/3) Golf World: Inside look at America's surging desire to get back to golf

(6/3) Suburban Chicago golf courses celebrate busy month

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