America’s Heartland led the nation in May with more than a 25 percent gain in rounds played, helping the U.S. sustain double-digit growth through the first five months of the year.
For the year-to-date period, U.S. rounds played increased 15.9 percent, and the number jumped 8.4 percent in May compared with the same month in 2011, according to the latest National Golf Rounds Played Report.
On a national basis, public-access courses reported gains of 9.3 percent in May and 17.6 percent for the year-to-date period. By comparison, private courses reported increases of 5.1 percent and 10.2 percent, respectively.
Warmer temperatures and less rain helped explain the increases, and nowhere was this more evident than in the Midwest. Heartland states such as Illinois, Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin all posted robust growth, but none topped Ohio’s rounds-played gain of 42.4 percent in May.
The national report is a collaborative venture involving Golf Datatech, PGA of America, National Golf Course Owners Association and the National Golf Foundation. More than 3,600 golf courses contributed data to the May report.
The following is a regional breakdown:
Region: May // Year to date
• Pacific: 5.2 percent // 6.7 percent
(California, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington)
• Mountain: 9.8 percent // 13.5 percent
(Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada)
• West North Central: 12.0 percent // 32.8 percent
(Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Missouri)
• East North Central: 25.5 percent // 50.1 percent
(Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin)
• South Central: 5.1 percent // 8.7 percent
(Alabama, Arizona, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas)
• South Atlantic: -1.8 percent // 5.9 percent
(Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia)
• Mid Atlantic: 5.9 percent // 31.5 percent
(New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania)
• New England: -0.1 percent // 19.1 percent
(Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont)
• United States: 8.4 percent // 15.9 percent