As I write this blog, it’s raining outside and there’s a definite feel of autumn in the air as the kids head back to school and their parents head back to work, if they finished the summer on vacation.
With all that’s going on outside of golf now that fall is here, you would think that the game would take a bit of a hit now that the Labour Day weekend has come and gone.
Last week’s GNN Poll suggested that is indeed the case. We asked readers how much their business will drop off in September compared to the peak months of July/August.
The majority, or 43 per cent of respondents, said their business would go down 21 to 40 per cent, while another seven per cent said it would decreased more than 40 per cent, with 14 per cent responding that their business would be down one to 20 per cent.
So 64 per cent, not surprisingly, said they will experience at least some decrease in business, with a strong number saying that decrease will be significant, but what was surprising is that a significant number of GNN readers said they wouldn’t experience any decrease at all.
It isn’t so much that some felt their business wouldn’t go down, but over a third, or 36 per cent, felt this would be the case in September.
GNN blogger Kyle German, for instance, says in his latest blog here that Northview Golf and Country Club in Surrey, B.C., where he teaches, has a full sheet of corporate events this month.
September can be a glorious month on the Lower Mainland and Kyle also believes that golfers are trying to get in as much golf as possible before winter sets in with rain and dropping temperatures.
Fair enough, but I got to thinking about other reasons that a drop in business isn’t necessarily a slam dunk in September.
Many in the industry, for example, believe that changing weather patterns have extended the golf season further into the autumn months than what was the case. say 20 years ago, so that could be a contributing factor in business staying steady in September.
It may be the graying population as baby boomers approach retirement age. If they’re not fully retired, many of the boomers have more flexible schedules than they used to, which may allow them to play golf more now than when they were working full-time.
A chat with another GNN blogger, Kevin Thistle, offered another possible contributing factor. Kevin believes the early start to the season that many of us enjoyed this year with warm spring temperatures put people into the habit of playing golf regularly.
Adding to what Kevin said, that momentum may carry into the fall this year.
Another possible factor that Kevin mentioned dealt with the economy, or at least the good news-bad news messages we keep getting. He believes that roller-coaster may cause people to say enough with uncertainty and decide to live their lives, without obsessing on the economy.
Kevin’s full blog will be up later this week.
Whatever the reason, or combination of reasons, the number of respondents who don’t see a decline in business is a positive sign, perhaps even a sign that the industry is slowly starting to turn around. Let’s hope it’s a number that continues to rise.