Hinton Golf Club project profit in 2020

Masha Scheele
Local Journalism Initiative

Kyle Crawford, director of the Hinton Golf Club, presented the club’s 2020 budget and business plan as part of a temporary reporting arrangement to the Town of Hinton and Council at the Standing Committee Meeting on June 9.

The projected profit for the Hinton Golf Club in 2020 is slightly over $8,000. 

While unexpected expenses can sometimes come up throughout the year, Crawford is confident that the club can reach the goal of an $8000 profit.

He stated the club’s focus for 2020 is increasing the number of rounds and increasing food and beverage revenue on a monthly basis, as well as providing excellent customer service.

Crawford said staff is tracking everything, including rounds, revenue, and wages, and sending data to its board members.

“This will give us a daily percentage of where we are relative to our budget that we have created for 2020,” Crawford said during his presentation.

Adjustments can then be made when problems arise right away instead of catching issues months later, he explained.

This data will also help gear marketing initiatives to get people on the property and increase rounds.

“Considering we’re only open for one month, we don’t know if data is skewed in certain areas. We’ll find out at the three month mark,” Crawford said.

That data and the budget for 2021 will come back to council as soon as possible, Crawford added.

Projected expenses in 2020 add up to $761,617.14, which are slightly higher than 2019 numbers.

Clubhouse expenses double in 2020 compared to 2019, because the clubhouse will be fully operational this year.

A fully operational clubhouse will also increase its revenue stream.

Everything within the restaurant will be done in house going forward, Crawford explained.

“The restaurant is rebranded, not just the restaurant as part of the Hinton Golf Club but as its own entity as Pano Bar & Grill,” Crawford said.

He added that one major factor of the expense increase in the club house is due to bringing everything up to code and to pass health and safety inspections. 

“We had coolers and grease traps cleaned out, hood vents, that’s why that expense is there,” Crawford said.

The cost for maintenance of the course dropped around $30,000 from 2019 numbers because of wage cuts as some employees were laid off during the pandemic and also due to snow remaining on the property.

Coun. Ryan Maguhn brought up the fact that the club isn’t eligible for the federal wage subsidy in the club’s current state related to how the municipality is involved.

Crawford added that since the course still had snow into May, they could not have opened even without the impact of COVID-19. 

“Unless we had been open on April 1, then we could have shown a loss in revenue,” Crawford said.

COVID-19 restrictions did however keep the pro shop closed much longer causing loss of revenue, but pro shop expenses are also projected to be slightly less due to wage cuts.

“We did drop some wages and have two less people on staff than last year. Trying to make sure we are somewhat profitable this year moving forward,” Crawford added.

Since moving some wages around from general administration expenses to the pro shop expenses, the expenses for general administration dropped substantially since 2019.

Crawford managed to bring down expenses even more through making deals with all vendors the golf course deals with.

“We were able to cut some costs drastically through phoning every company that we deal with and make deals with them moving forward,” Crawford said.

The club is also partnering with the Jasper golf course again this year to offer a 30 per cent discount to Jasper members and vice versa.

A two round package deal to play both Jasper and Hinton will also be available this year.

Since Jasper’s course was closed until June 1 due to COVID-19, the Hinton Golf Club generated about $2,300 in revenue by having some of Jasper’s members and the public travelling to Hinton to play the course.

Membership registrations at the Hinton Golf Club are pretty similar to last year while league registrations are down, due to the restrictions around COVID-19.

Crawford projects an increase in green fees compared to last year but said golf cart revenue has been down since more people are walking.

Some new initiatives Crawford hoped to introduce this year were leasing opportunities in the clubhouse building and music and comedy nights to boost food and beverage revenue as well as bringing in members of the public to enjoy.

These two initiatives haven’t been able to take off due to restrictions around COVID-19.

In pre-pandemic times, administration intended for the golf course asset transfer to the Town to be fully realized and a decision regarding the Club’s operational structure and parameters made by Council, said Heather Waye, Hinton’s strategic services manager.

“As this was not achievable during the pandemic, this report and the following report coming in the fall, serve to achieve the goals of oversight in the original motion as a stop gap,” Waye explained. 

This temporary reporting arrangement is an effort to ensure that the Town of Hinton, and Hinton Town Council, are aware of all current statuses and actions, she stated.