Course Improvements Continue at Panorama West

This photo of work underway on the eighth fairway shows the equipment used to dig the trenches for the irrigation lines. Once the lines are placed in the trenches, workers fill the hole and replace sod that was removed. This view is of the par-4 fairway leading to the fifth green. This is one of the areas on the Panorama West course that was not irrigated previously, because the par-4 tee box wasn’t a part of the original course design. When complete, the new irrigation system will reach all fairways, tees and greens. This is one of the new directional signs installed at Panorama West to help golfers who are unfamiliar with the course.

By Susan Thompson

Work continues on the new irrigation system at the Panorama West golf course, and is on track to be done by the end of July. Once complete, irrigation water will be available to all fairways, tees and greens on the course, something that wasn’t possible with the current system.

A gift of more than $473,000 from Jim and Joyce McLuen is financing this and other improvements at the Panorama West golf course. Twenty percent of their estate was directed to Friends of Lake Panorama, a 501(c)3 nonprofit charity. Friends is working with LPA staff to oversee the work.

The next big project is additional cart paths. A contractor has been chosen to install some new sections of concrete paths. This will include adding paths to the par-four tee boxes, plus a section of concrete adjacent to par-three tee boxes where none currently exists.

The contractor was at the course recently to flag where the paths will be installed. Dirt work and framing will be underway soon, and concrete poured in sections from the end of July into August.

New signs, yardage markers, ball washers and trash receptacles have arrived. While a few posts were installed earlier, the bulk of this installation will be done in August once concrete paths and irrigation work is complete.  

Six additional signs will be added to the course at various locations. These signs will help direct players to the par-four tee boxes that exist on five holes, plus make it clearer where carts should park near the par-four tee boxes on the fourth hole.

Eighteen 5”x7” granite yardage markers will be installed on the nine par-three tee boxes, showing distances to the green from both the red and blue tee markers.

New landscaping around the clubhouse is complete. A bench, plaque and sign honoring the McLuens will be installed soon in the landscaped bed near the pro shop door.

In the fall, a three-year project to improve turf conditions of fairways and tees will begin. Fifteen acres of tees and fairways will be aerified and interseeded, plus starter fertilizer applied. This project will result in better disease and drought-tolerant turf conditions. Funds will be set aside for 2019 and 2020 to cover additional seed, fertilizer and weed control as turf conditions improve.

Another project originally discussed by the McLuen task force was improving the six sand bunkers on the courts. Because there was concern there wouldn’t be enough money to renovate the bunkers, the task force suggested turning the sand bunkers into grass bunkers.

Now that the cost of other improvements – irrigation, cart paths, tee box amenities, landscaping, and improved turf – is clearer, the topic of sand traps is being revisited. Some McLuen funds could be made available to renovate the sand traps, and the LPN Board of Managers has endorsed the idea.

To help support this project, Bill and Toni Wright organized a fundraising golf tournament. The 18-hole event was held June 29. Participants stopped after nine holes for a dinner courtesy of Kim and Maureen Lubeck, followed by another nine holes.

A total of $1,835 was raised. These funds have been deposited in the Friends of Lake Panorama bank account, and designated for improvements to the sand traps. Bids are being sought, and decisions on the extent and timing of the renovations will be made in the next few weeks.