The Alabama State Parks announces plans for improvements to their six golf courses that officials believe will improve play and marketability. The announcement came during the North Alabama Media Cup Invitational, a one-day golf tournament hosted by Lake Guntersville State Park for members of the media from Jackson, DeKalb and Marshall counties. The tournament was an effort to raise awareness to local golfers that the Lake Guntersville course is back open after repairs and clean-up of damage caused by the storms in April 2011.
Randy Jinks, Marketing Manager for Alabama State Parks, announced that each park golf course is being given a specific name along with a new logo designed especially for that park. The new name of the Lake Guntersville course, “Eagle’s Nest,” was revealed at the tournament along with the unveiling of the new course logo. The name is in reference to the ever-increasing presence of bald eagles in the Guntersville area, which is the result of efforts by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to restore the population.
In addition to Lake Guntersville’s, Alabama State Parks has 18-hole golf courses at Joe Wheeler, Oak Mountain, Lakepoint and Gulf, and a nine-hole course at Roland Cooper.
Regarding play, Jinks announced that each park course is going to be rated, handicapped and sloped during the next few months along with being placed on the Golf Handicap and Information Network (GHIN). Being a part of GHIN will allow golfers to record their handicaps at the course while playing. It is believed this will increase play at the courses, as well as attract more tournament play to the park courses.
The Parks Division expects the new names and logos to assist in jointly marketing and promoting the parks’ courses. After each course is officially renamed and the logos are introduced, visitors to the parks’ website, www.alapark.com, will be asked to provide suggestions regarding a name for all the courses collectively, be it a trail, path, course or other suggested title.
Alabama State Parks also plans to offer a special golf gift card in the near future that will enable golfers to play all six courses at a discounted rate. For more information about the courses and all 22 of Alabama’s state parks, visit www.alapark.com.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries.