Gulf Coast golf withstands Isaac’s punch

The aftermath of Hurricane Isaac in Arabi, La.

The aftermath of Hurricane Isaac in Arabi, La.

Across the Gulf Coast, golf course operators were relieved to have been spared the sort of widespread damage from Hurricane Isaac that the region had endured exactly seven years earlier with Hurricane Katrina.

Flooding was worse than anticipated when the Category 1 storm made landfall southwest of New Orleans on Aug. 28, but for the most part, golf courses along the Louisiana and Mississippi coasts were back in operation within days.

The Louisiana Golf Association is gathering damage assessment from member courses and expects to have a report ready by the end of the week. A spokesman said he foresees nothing similar to Katrina’s devastation.

Tchefuncta Country Club in Covington, La., 30 miles north of New Orleans and just above Lake Pontchartrain, had nine of its 18 holes open early this week after the Tchefuncta River had begun receding. In nearby Abita Springs, Money Hill Golf Course was up and running.

In St. Mary Parish, in the low-lying Mississippi Delta west of New Orleans, Atchafalaya Golf Course in Patterson closed for only two days and reopened for the weekend.

Along the casino district of Biloxi, Miss., overlooking the Gulf of Mexico, Beau Rivage Resort and Casino was open within hours of the hurricane’s passing inland. Fallen Oak Golf Course, the resort’s track in Saucier, was open by the weekend. Similar stories were reported across the area, including at The Preserve Golf Club in Vancleave and Shell Landing Golf Course in Gautier.

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