While a lot of golf courses are open for play, one that has closed amid the COVID-19 pandemic is Old Town Club.
The course and other facilities were shut down Saturday because someone connected to Old Town tested positive for the coronavirus, according to club president Phil Thomas. The individual's condition nor ties to the club were disclosed by Thomas.
“We closed immediately for the safety of our staff and our members,” Thomas said of Old Town learning of the positive test. “We plan to stay closed until we get more clarity and we can make sure it’s safe to open again.”
Old Town Club, which is the highest-ranked local course by the North Carolina Golf Panel at No. 14, is the official home of the Wake Forest golf teams. The course sits close to campus and was the site of the Old Town Club Collegiate the last two springs hosted by the Wake Forest men’s team.
Thomas said members were notified that the course, clubhouse and tennis courts were being closed for several days.
“We notified our members about why we were closing, and we suspended all club activities,” Thomas said.
Old Town, which has close to 600 members, has been a constant in many of the worldwide rankings for its design. In recent rankings it was chosen No. 23 out of 6,500 classic courses in the world built before 1960 by Golfweek magazine. Golf magazine also has ranked Old Town No. 59 among all U.S. courses.
Old Town, a Perry Maxwell design, opened in 1939, but in 2012 it was renovated by the design team of Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw.
Josh Paris, Old Town's general manager, said safety for the members and the staff is why it was important to be proactive.
“We made sure to make the necessary call to close,” Paris said. “Our board all agreed it was the right thing to do.”
As of this morning, Forsyth County is home to 14 known cases of COVID-19. More than 400 cases have been reported in North Carolina, according to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.