March 16, 2001
It will soon be spring, and a hotel owner’s fancy will turn to golf.
The local hospitality industry knows that vacationing golfers can readily fill hotel rooms in the spring and fall, before and after the summer crush of beach visitors. Cape Region innkeepers are joining the trend started locally by their compatriots to the south in Ocean City, Maryland.
A few local hotel owners recently stepped up their efforts at golf marketing significantly. One has an inside edge on the competition.
Jim Powers is now the co-manager of the new Avenue Inn and Spa, on Rehoboth Avenue in Rehoboth Beach. That’s the same Jim Powers who worked for several years as the head PGA golf professional at Sussex Pines Country Club in Georgetown.
Powers returned to the Cape Region last fall after a work stint in Chicago, and began working for Ken Simpler at the Avenue Inn. In January, his wife Adele joined Powers as the co-manager of the new hotel. Long-time Cape Region residents may remember Adele as the former owner of the Heaven in a Hand Basket shop in Rehoboth Beach.
With his wife’s help, Powers freed up time to revive his golf career. Simpler and Powers decided that the hotel/golf combination could work well for both of them.
“It’s exciting to watch hotel guests find out that the guy behind the counter at a hotel just off the beach is also a PGA pro that can help with their golf game,” Powers said recently.
Beginning on March 23, the Inn will start the first of two spring golf clinic weekends for its guests. Powers is looking forward to the new opportunity.
“The guests will check in on Friday afternoon. That night there will be a question and answer session at the hotel, where we’ll get to know each other and explore the areas that the guests would like to work on,” Powers explained.
“On Saturday morning, we’ll then spend a few hours working on the short game. In the afternoon, the group will work on their iron play and their woods. We’ll devote Sunday morning to trouble and sand shots,” he said.
All the practice sessions will take place at the Midway Par 3 and Driving Range, just below Five Points.
Powers said his hotel will sponsor an additional weekend golf clinic for its guests on the weekend of April 6-8. “The spots for the April weekend are filling in quickly, but there are still several openings for the March clinic. That’s probably due to the chance that the weather might not hold up for the March session,” Powers said. “We’ll just have to wait and see as the weekend approaches.”
In addition to the new clinics, Powers is continuing his teaching relationship with Delaware Technical & Community College in Georgetown, where he’s conducted golf clinics for many years. He’s also available for individual lessons, and can be reached at 302-226-2900.
The Holiday Inn Express in Rehoboth Beach is also stepping up its efforts to help golfers enjoy the area’s golf courses and hospitality. Gretchen Howk, the hotel’s former Guest Service Manager, is now the Golf Coordinator for Delaware Coast Beachlinks, the golf packaging division for Atlantic Management, the hotel’s parent company.
Howk can customize play and stay combinations from four of Atlantic Management’s hotel properties along with over 20 golf courses in Southern Delaware and greater Ocean City, Maryland. Beachlinks will offer a wide variety of choices and savings on tee times and accommodations.
For more information on Delaware Coast Beachlinks and golf packaging, call Howk at 877-DE-LINKS, or visit www.beachlinks-golf.com.