Clare golf club swings into 49th season

Karla Kelly, Digby Courier editor@digbycourier.ca
Published on May 3, 2015

COMEAUVILLE - Several golfers ignored wet and windy conditions April 27 to play a round on opening day at Clare Golf and Country Club.

Often referred to as ‘the Friendly Club’, the course swung into its 49th season with the opening of the front nine holes. Course superintendent Andrew Saulnier said greens were well groomed and ready on the front nine, but were delayed on the back nine.

“We waited until later in the week, May 1, before the back nine was open due to wet conditions,” Saulnier said.

Long-time golfer Renette Gaudet and her husband Ted Hurst of Saulnierville were two of the early returning members to get back into the golfing season.

“It has been a long, hard winter and late spring and I can’t wait to get on the golf course,” Gaudet said. “Ted and I showed up opening day to get our season underway.”

Desire LeBlanc, vice-president of the Comeauville club, said there are four tournaments in May beginning May 8-9 with an opening tournament, followed by the Lobster Classic the following weekend, May 16-17.

“The club will host the provincial men’s 4-ball championship in June so we are off to a great start,” LeBlanc said. “Plans are already underway to celebrate the club’s 50th anniversary next year as we host the Nova Scotia Amateur championship.”

LeBlanc said the Comeauville golf course has also been referred to as ‘The Hidden Gem’ with putting greens that are comparable to the best in the province.

“I believe we could say our golf course is arguably one of the best courses in Nova Scotia.”

Nova Scotia Golf vice-president Ernest Muise said the Clare club was built on the backs of volunteers and several members have achieved provincial and national success due in part to its junior program.

 “Kevin Dugas, the best pro to come out of the Maritimes, was the Canadian junior champion in 1981 and it was an honor to play with him here in Clare,” Muise said. “Kevin, who is originally from Little Brook Station, was inducted into the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame in November.”

In 2005, another Clare golfer, Rob Collins, was Canadian mid-amateur champion and now Austin Connelly, the top ranked amateur golfer in Canada, lists the club as his home. Connelly was also ranked number tenth last week in the world amateur golf rankings.