Vinita Businessmen Purchase Closed Vinita Golf Course

Tuesday, August 31st 1999, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Some Green Country golfers can look forward to an upgrade on the links.
Five local businessmen bought out the Buffalo Ridge Country Club with Craig County's economic development in mind.
Vinita's golf course entertains about a third of the daily players it used to.
With the clubhouse closed, and pro-shop heavily damaged by fire, those who still play on what was the Buffalo Ridge Country Club's course are fielding more rumors than anything else.
DAVID CRESAP: "There have been a lot of rumors going around-- they were going to dismantle the golf course, take the greens and move them somewhere else. I'm glad it didn't happen."
VINCE ELLIOTT: "I caddied out here many years ago and I have a found, great place in my heart for this club.."
The course will stay, and the clubhouse will re-open.
The restaurant will serve food again, and the swimmers and tennis players will come back because Vince Elliott and four friends are saving this club with their own money.
He's made a little more since his early days as a caddy out here.
"I made 25 cents a round. You raked the sand greens before you putted."
But this is no selfish, profit-hungry move.
TIM WILLIAMS: "None of them has any aspirations of making any money on this purchase. They just purchased it for the community."
Banker Tim Williams helped the group seal the half-million plus dollar deal to buy Buffalo Ridge.
WILLIAMS: "When companies come to town to look at this as a potential site for relocation, naturally having a facilily like this for their employees to come for recreation is very important."
It's really not about them.. you probably won't ever see the former caddy or his buddies out here hitting balls.
Ironically, the new owners are not golfers.
Is that why you don't play anymore?
Yeah, I got burned out caddying. I think. I like to say that.
The course and club that drew people from as far away as Tulsa is coming back strong.
"It's going to take some time, but we'll get her back."
Those five investors have big plans for the club.
If things work out, they'll add nine more holes, a new driving range and a new pro shop.
Again, the restaurant and the course will be open to the public.