Country Club holds open meeting to update members


| jlyons@queenscourier.com |

Open Country Club Meetingresized

Country Club members gathered in the VIP Room in November for an open meeting to update them on finances and activities.

Near the beginning of the meeting, Board president Bob Ricken encouraged members to join the Country Club Committee.

“It’s one thing to be in the Country Club,” Ricken said. “It’s another thing to be involved in letting us know what you’re feeling.”

Phil Plafker, a Board member and chair of the Country Club Committee, thanked the committee’s volunteers for their time, effort and input.

Plafker shared the Country Club’s membership numbers as of October 31, 2011. As of that date, there were 1,327 general members; 111 house members; 52 tennis members; and 333 golf members. Total membership was at 1,823, which represents a six-member increase from 2010.

For the third year in a row, there will be no increase in membership dues for the Country Club.

“I think that’s a really big plus,” Plafker said.

Plafker explained that for next year’s season the only increase will be cart fees for 18 holes of golf, which will increase from $18 to $20.

During the meeting Plafker also detailed the Country Club’s sources of revenue. The largest amount, 41.3 percent, comes from general house membership, which is expected to produce $1,265,000 in revenue for 2011 and $1,285,000 in 2012 revenue. The second largest revenue generator is golf membership, which represents 39.3 percent of the Country Club’s overall revenue. It is projected that golf membership will bring in $1,203,000 in revenue both in 2011 and in 2012.

The Country Club has budgeted $329,000 for capital improvements in 2012. Of that, the largest amount, $135,000, has been designated for interior refurbishments, including in the VIP Room kitchen.

“The kitchen will be expanded. It’s going to be expanded to help us maintain what we had this past year,” Plafker said. “I think everyone was happy with [the food service] we had. I personally have never seen such social activity here at the Club in my 18 years of living here as we did this past year.”

Plafker said that other work to redo the VIP Room will not be done until the kitchen expansion has been completed.

The ladies’ card room will also be expanded to include more tables.

Another item on the capital improvement list that Plafker highlighted was $15,000 being allocated for a golf course architect and planning. He said that the Towers is currently working with a golf course architect to determine what needs to be done to maintain the course so that it won’t “cost a bundle of money at a later day” to take care of it. Plafker said they are also determining what the cost would be to improve the golf course and “beautify it that much more.”

Plafker also said that the suggestion box that was placed in the reception area of the Country Club a year ago “has been very useful.”

“We have made some minor changes as a result of these suggestions and I’d like to thank everyone who did participate in giving us some suggestions,” he said.

Controller Robert Serikstad reported that, as of October 31, 2011, the Country Club operations were $8,815 ahead of budget. Additionally, cash on hand was at $925,181, which is slightly higher than what it was at last year at this time.

Subcommittee chairs also spoke during the meeting. Towers Men’s Golf Association co-president Ed Vesel said that they “had a wonderful season.” He noted that the sponsored golf program is still in effect and that a number of those members have already purchased apartments at the Towers.

Roz Worobow, president of the Towers Ladies’ Golf Association, also spoke about the sponsored golf members.

“We have integrated them. It’s as if they live here,” she said. “They are very happy so we’re happy. We would love to get more lady sponsored members. If you want to recommend someone we’re here to help.”

Tennis Association president Werner Nass said that they too had a “very, very successful season.” He said members enjoy the fun and competitiveness of tennis in addition to participating in the group’s many social events. In addition to having about 50 active Tennis Association members, Nass said the group also has 25 associate members.

Plafker spoke on behalf of a couple subcommittee chairs. In regards to publicity, he said that the Country Club has been having a dialog with North Shore-LIJ about them using the facilities once in a while as a “thank you for being our neighbors.” He also said that there will be new member receptions held twice a year.

Board member Shelley Sander also gave an update about the newly formed committee that she chairs, the Gym, Aerobics and Pool (GAP) Committee. It includes the gym, fitness classes, indoor and outdoor pools, billiards room and boxing room.

Sander that that there is money in the 2012 budget for new gym equipment.

“But it’s very crowded in there so we will be reviewing our current inventory to see what might be a candidate for replacement based on condition and utilization,” Sander said.

Other things that the committee is working on are expanding aerobics class offerings, a decorating upgrade to the boxing room and selecting new furniture for the outdoor pool area.

Following the committee updates, the floor was opened up for questions, during which time it was asked what the entertainment would be for the holiday shows.

“The committee has decided not to have two of the three shows,” Plafker said. “We only will have the Memorial Day show because July 4 and Labor Day were not well attended.”

However, Plafker said there might be events in the VIP Room instead for those two holidays.