The Island Golf Club in Plaquemine, Louisiana
How Sweet It Is!
By Dave Daubert
Sweet! How else can you describe a championship golf course carved out of a sugar plantation? In fact, sugarcane still grows in the field adjacent to The Island. This par 72 Mike Young 7,000+ yards golf course is one of the original members of Louisiana's famed Audubon Golf Trail. The challenging layout features 54 water elements including Bayous Plaquemine & Jacob. Of the 18 holes only one doesn't bring water into play, but astute golfers (and the locals) know to watch the swaying of the sugarcane to determine the wind direction. The greens are TifEagle bermuda.
The Island is the only golf course in Plaquemine, a small town just outside of Baton Rouge, and closed in April 2020 with the onset of the pandemic looming. A new owner at the time originally opted against plans to reopen the course, but residents agreed to a proposal for the HOA dues to be increased so the pool and golf course could be reopened. An additional incentive for new annual memberships also helped to raise funds for improvements and a new lease was arranged with a local restauranteur Brent Barbier to reopen the grill. One resident added that he was tired of seeing so many things leaving Plaquemine.
The grassroots effort has led to a new lease on life for The Island. Bill Greenfield, a resident since 2018 and President of The Island Homeowners Association, said, "residents were not ready to take their golf gear elsewhere." A proposal was put forth to the residents and approved, and the golf course reopened in June 2021. Luckily the facilities never fell into disrepair during the shutdown because the owner continued to pay the maintenance staff to keep the facility in shape.
The community members at The Island took a hands-on approach to reopening the golf course. Work parties were arranged to spread sand, rework bunkers, or clear overgrown areas regularly. The new owners have gone all-in with working with the HOA and see the need to keep The Island 'above ground.' New memberships have joining incentives and more new homes are being built near the course. Now it is a matter of getting the word out that The Island is open for business. They recently had a ribbon-cutting event inviting the residents of the town of Plaquemine. Come on Out and enjoy a "Sweet Course" in a tranquil setting.
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Revised: 02/28/2022 - Article Viewed 2,013 Times
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About: Dave Daubert
David has been writing about golf since the turn of the century. He was Managing Editor at a regional golf magazine for 11 years, published in Canada, the IAGTO and a Staff Writer for The Georgia Golf Trail. His insightful perspective brings golf to life.