Tramark May Move Its 11th Hole To Avoid Gulfport Traffic - - The News for South Mississippi


Tramark May Move Its 11th Hole To Avoid Gulfport Traffic

The new plan eliminates the need for Tramark golfers to put their lives in danger just to play one hole.

Just ask Bill Allshouse.  He rolled in a tricky bogey putt on Tramark's 10th hole. When he got in his cart, he knew he faced a much bigger challenge. Allshouse had to cross Washington Avenue to reach the eleventh tee box.

"If we hadn't had a courteous driver that allowed us to cross," Allshouse said, "you could have spent quite a lot of time. And if you were a risk taker, I could see where you would get run over and really get hurt."

The 11th hole is Tramark's only hole that sits south of Washington Avenue, alongside the Air National Guard base. Before you tee off, and after you putt, your cart must dodge the 19,000 cars that use Washington Avenue everyday.

As Rev. J.C. Wilks walked off the 11th green and headed toward the road, he said, "If the person is a golfer themselves, they'll stop and let you through."

In 28 years, golf pro Billy Applewhite says there's never been a car golf cart accident that he knows about. But that doesn't mean he likes having one hole on the wrong side of the road. "With the increased traffic and golfers having to go across and then coming back," Applewhite said, "it's just something that is an unnecessary risk if I can avoid it."

A solution may be on the horizon. The 1108th Avcrad unit is adjacent to the golf course. Billy Applewhite has been told the military group may expand its helicopter operations. The expansion would eliminate Tramark's 11th hole. If that happens, golf carts crossing Washington Avenue would no longer be necessary.

"And it's a good thing for us," Applewhite said, "because all our equipment will be on this side of the road. They've agreed to build a green and a tee base for us."

Billy Applewhite's plan is to split his par five eighth hole into two holes. One will be a par four, the other a par three. That way, Tramark will have 18 holes. And they'll all be on the clubhouse side of Washington Avenue.

by Brad Kessie

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