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Silo Ridge joins area's new golf communities

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by Ruth Scott

SBJ Contributing Writer

What happens when a group of guys are sitting around talking about how a certain piece of property would make a great golf course?

Well, in this case, they buy the property and build one.

Now, three of them are among the group of 20 investors and owners of Silo Ridge Country Club, which recently opened near Bolivar. Construction began in November 1996, and the course opened last month during the July 4 weekend.

"We felt like it was something the community really needed," said general manager Kevin Spaulding.

The par-72, 6,805-yard course is a Don Sechrest design. Silo Ridge has Bermuda fairways and tee boxes, and bent-grass greens.

A residential community of 32 home sites is located adjacent to the golf course. Spaulding said many of these sites are still available.

Spaulding said the response has been incredible, and he has heard many positive comments. "We've had some experts come out to rate the course," he said. "They have said it is in great shape, especially for being a new course."

Silo Ridge is a semi-private club, Spaulding said. "We do offer memberships, but we are currently open to the public." Greens fees are $29 during the week with a cart, or $20 without one. On weekends and holidays, carts are required, and the fee is $35.

"We tried to keep our pricing appropriate to the area," Spaulding said. "We wanted to keep it so that everyone could come enjoy the course." Golf membership fees include a one-time initiation fee of $2,250 (increasing to $3,000 Aug. 15), followed by $800 annually.

Social memberships are also available, for a $450 initiation fee and $450 annual fee. According to Spaulding, social members have access to the swimming pool, receive discounts in the restaurant and pro shop, as well as on greens fees, and may take part in members-only functions.

"At some point, we'll probably become a private course," he said. "Fees will probably increase, so becoming a member now locks you in at $450."

The 8,000-square-foot, two-story clubhouse has a large, shaded deck and restaurant overlooking the course. "It's a breathtaking view at sunset," Spaulding said. The restaurant, Mulligans, is open to the public 4-10 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday. Also located inside the clubhouse is a bar and grill called Under Par, "a cozy little area where you can get a burger and fries," he said.

Spaulding said the owners are striving to make Silo Ridge a family-oriented facility, from its family-style dining to the junior golf programs it offers. "We're big on kids," he said. "We're trying real hard to be a service-oriented business."

Silo Ridge has a full-service pro shop and a PGA professional, Chris Jones. "Our practice facility will be opening soon, so we'll have the ability to do some private instruction and utilize our PGA professional," Spaulding said.

"Business has been going really well," he said. "We have 220 members already," many of them from Springfield. "A lot of people have been coming from Springfield," he said. "Sometimes people have trouble getting on the Springfield courses, and it is easier to get on our course. They say it's just a 30-minute drive, and it's well worth it."

Although Silo Ridge doesn't require calling ahead for tee times, he said it is recommended, especially on weekends and holidays.

Silo Ridge is located three miles east of the Bolivar Wal-Mart on Mt. Gilead Road. For tee times or other information, call 326-7456.

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