PEORIA — Metamora Fields Golf Club has owned WeaverRidge Golf Club for just over a week now. But big changes are already happening.
First, the city of Peoria has been officially added to WeaverRidge Golf Club’s name. It is now called WeaverRidge Golf Club of Peoria.
“We’re proud of the cities our clubs sit in,” said Matt Rogers, general manager of both courses. “We had the name Metamora in our course and thought it would be a good idea to add Peoria to WeaverRidge.”
The second immediate change is the lowering of golfing rates at the Peoria course to mirror those at Metamora Fields.
Individual weekday rates at WeaverRidge have dropped from $74 to $50, including cart, while weekend rates are down from $74 to $60. Senior rate hours at Weaver have been extended from Monday to Wednesday before 8 a.m. to all day Monday through Friday. The new rate is $43.
Also new is a dual annual pass of $3,000 good for unlimited play on both courses and including cart and range access. The single course annual pass rate is $2,000.
A two-year renovation plan for WeaverRidge began this week with a new parking lot, clubhouse repairs and turf condition improvements. More changes will be announced soon. One is a marketing strategy intended to draw golfers from outside the area.
“We want to give golfers from Chicago and other areas an opportunity to come and play two great and very different courses,” Rogers said. “We have seen a little bit of a decline in golfers at Metamora Fields. We’re hoping in time, with the two together, we can market outside our local market and can get enough out-of-town people to make up the difference.
“WeaverRidge is more of a classic design with elevation changes and tree lines and more protection around the greens with bunkers. Metamora Fields is more of a links style golf course with less tree cover and more open space.”
Rogers said some management positions would be shared at both courses and an effort would be made to retain as many current employees as possible at WeaverRidge.
The $3.2 million boutique hotel plan for Metamora Fields fell short by $1.7 million in commitments last year. But the addition of WeaverRidge has rejuvenated the deal.
“A new gentleman is interested in becoming the main source of funding for the hotel,” Rogers said. “So it’s been brought back to life since we bought WeaverRidge. We’ll have another meeting this fall with the general public for anyone else who’s interested.”
Rogers said Jerry and Matt Weaver had been looking for a buyer for WeaverRidge the past several years. Metamora Fields owners Jim and Carol Ring had been close to an agreement with them in the past. But this time the Weavers decided they didn’t want to put any additional money into course improvements.
“It was time to pass the torch to the Ring family,” Rogers said.
Dave Reynolds can be reached at 686-3210 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at davereynolds2.