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Citing costs, Beale AFB is closing its golf course

By DAVID WILSON | Appeal-Democrat, Marysville, Calif. | Published: October 24, 2020

MARYSVILLE, Calif. (Tribune News Service) Coyote Run, the golf course on Beale Air Force Base, will be closed in three to six months. The decision to close the course was made in August, according to a Beale spokesperson.

The decision was made based on utilization rates, revenue generated and long-term sustainability. Over the last five years, the course has lost an average of $144,000 a year, according to the spokesperson. In addition, utilization is down because active duty personnel and families are not as interested in golf and don't use the course.

According to the spokesperson, the course will be reutilized for multiple activities that will attempt to encourage greater participation. Some of the proposals include keeping the driving range and adding batting cages, BMX dirt track, paintball course, foot golf and axe throwing. What ends up replacing the course will be based on availability of funds, according to the spokesperson.

The course currently has 40 annual card holders who will be given a full reimbursement for any months remaining on their annual card. For the course to remain operational, it would take $250,000, which the spokesperson said is not financially practical.

A specific closure date is not set yet because the closure package is being routed to higher headquarters for approval. The base's Force Support Squadron has been told it will be anywhere between three to six months. The course was closed from April 8 to May 11 during the pandemic.

Coyote Run's imminent closure does not signal a financial crisis at Beale, according to the spokesperson. The course is funded by non-appropriated funds, meaning it has to generate revenue on its own to stay open. The spokesperson said other golf courses around the Air Force and nation are also struggling and that there are simply not as many people golfing. After years of not making money, the non-appropriated funds were no longer able to cover the course's losses.

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