Oaksridge Golf Course closure put on hold; will remain open through 2023 season

The Chehalis Tribe has reversed their decision to close the Oaksridge Golf Course this month.

Following the recent announcement that a closure would take place as of April 16. the tribe has now said that “After careful consideration and discussions, it has been decided not to close the course at this time and to remain open. “

In an update, the tribe tells KXRO that “Measures are being taken to implement a plan and strategy to increase sales and decrease expenses so that we can continue to have a golf course as originally planned so that we can offer this to our members as well as our surrounding community, our employees, and our businesses.”

The current plan is to run the course through the 2023 golf season, and then evaluate the status at that time.

“We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused or any misconceptions. We plan to work together for a successful outcome.”

The closure announcement came due to the recent resignation of the course manager and ongoing losses.

According to Jeff Warnke, Chehalis Tribe Director of External Affairs, the original plan was to close operations in August.

The expedited date had come, according to Warnke, due to the recent resignation of the course manager.

“Unfortunately, without a manager for the facility, it put the tribe in a more difficult position and the decision was made to cease operations of the course.”

Warnke says that while there have been speculations about the reasons behind the closure, it was “simply a business decision”. 

Warnke told KXRO that after the tribe purchased the golf course in 2019, it has operated at a loss each year since. This included losing almost $500,000 in operations, plus investments to improve the grounds, machinery and address deferred maintenance.

He said that the Tribe is no different than any other businesses in the community, adding “we simply can not continue to lose money on a failing business for an extended period of time.”

Warnke added that no decision has been made about the future of the property following the season, but that the tribe would be reviewing potential options for the course, and decisions could come in the coming months, although no plans have been made at this time.