Courtesy Traill County Tribune
By James R. Johnson
Sixty-two golfers gathered for the 40th annual Hatton Open golf tournament.
Requirements include players having a Hatton address, be a Hatton High School (Hatton Eielson) alumni, being employed in Hatton, be related to the prior categories and be 13 years of age or older.
David Hanson recalls when his parents gave him a set of clubs when he returned from the Army in 1968. He also recalls the three pine trees that flank the ninth hole “were just sticks.”
“I think this is the nicest nine in North Dakota, myself, but I’m a little prejudiced,” Hanson says.
Joy McLain confesses, “I love this course. I’m gonna get out there and swing!”
Justin Foss adds, “This beautiful course is one of the nicest in North Dakota. That’s for sure. They’ve got to get more members here.”
Mayville Golf Course is in the second of a four-phase improvement project to make the clubhouse an events center and the course a destination. The first phase was the new roof on the clubhouse. The second phase covers what’s underneath: upgrading lighting to LED, upgrades to the serving area and patio, bathroom renovations and vinyl siding.
The total cost of Phase Ii is $51,500. In April, the Mayville-Portland Economic Development Committee moved to match up to 50 percent of new funds raised specifically for the Phase II renovation.
Larry “Hummer” McGillis has taken on the role of fundraiser for “the diamond in the rough.” Supporters who commit $200 have a seat on the Mayville Golf Course board. McGillis says the generosity of the community makes him emotional.
“I’ve never seen so much energy,” McGillis told the Tribune. “People are approaching this with a can-do attitude versus a can’t-do. The other day, a young man give me 500 bucks.”
Every Monday, Harlan Johnson and Shane Orr man the grill for “Burger, Brat and Brew Night” at Mayville Golf Course, which hosted the Red River Valley Senior tournament Thursday, July 23.
Mike Bakken, clubhouse manager, says, “Contractors are lined up. It’s just a matter of getting our ducks in a row. Golfers, members and the community are excited to see what we are going to be doing to have an events center.”
The third phase will be to replace the carpet and kitchen tile in 2021. The final phase, set for 2022, include an outside deck on the west side of the clubhouse, signs for the clubhouse and pro shop, and a canopy for the East Door Events Center.
“If we want it tomorrow, we need to care for it today,” McGillis says. “It takes a community or region to support these types of things for the future.”
Beneath the new clubhouse roof, at Mayville Golf Course, changes are being made for lighting, the service area and bathrooms. The community and MPEDC are each contributing more than $25,000 toward making the course a destination.