Big Fish Director Says Despite Weather, Course Showing a Profit
By Joe Morey News Editor
Big Fish Golf Club Director, Indy Thompson, gave a report to the LCO Tribal Governing Board on August 18 showing numbers for the month of August are up compared to last year, but overall numbers for year-to-date are down. Despite being down, Thompson said the course has made a profit of $26,000 to date.
Thompson stated a big factor in the lower numbers is the number of rain days which has increased significantly. There have been a total of 38 weather-impacted or rain-out days this year and five already in August. In 2018, there were a total of 26 rain days up to the same date. He also said there are less tribal members and locals golfing this year compared to last.
“I’m very impressed with how well we are doing considering the weather we’ve had,” Thompson said. “This is an accomplishment and I commend our staff on the success. Rain days will be critical to our success going into the rest of the year.”
Thompson said he thinks the higher numbers in August will help make up for lower numbers overall and less rain days will also be critical going into the fall.
“Employees are playing less golf as well, which means less guests are being brought in to play,” Thompson noted. Thompson said guests that are playing the course are purchasing more in addition to their golf round which is helping.
Thompson also noted the course opened 11 days later in the season this year than last.
The LCO TGB purchased the Big Fish Golf Club using the community investment funds from LCO Financial Services and also provided $200,000 as start-up capital from those same funds. As of Thompson’s report, there remains $187,000 of those funds and that follows equipment purchases.
A new marketing plan has been put together and will be initiated in the off-season which should help create higher numbers next year, according to Thompson.
Regarding course conditions, Thompson said they are improving and that guests are very happy with the greens.
“Many members and guests who have been playing the course since it opened have said that this is the best the course has looked since it opened,” Thompson stated. “We’re very proud of this.”
Thompson said Big Fish is currently ranked 15th in the state of Wisconsin by Golfweek Magazine.
New signage is being placed at the entrance on Hwy B which Thompson said will put Big Fish ahead of any other golf course in northern Wisconsin.
“We’re working with Scott Berseth from Stratford Sign Company. He’s visited the site many times,” Thompson said. He’s also talked with him about advertisements on the rocks next to the tee’s.
Thompson said he liked the renderings for the new sign and it will also say Owned and Operated by the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Ojibwa.