By Sue Moore
Angels Crossing Golf Club was selected as one of the best places you can play golf in the 2017 issue of Golf Week. With the Renaissance Golf Management team in place at Angels Crossing for the 2018 season, the goal is to make the course even better and go from #17 to first on the list.
Renaissance owner Tom Ham was hired to oversee all operations for the municipal course. He is bringing with him PGA golf professional Brian Schueneman to oversee daily operations of the course. The company was selected by Vicksburg’s Village Manager Jim Mallery. It plans to improve the bottom line of the course while focusing on the golfing experience for the many members and guests who love the challenge the Angels Crossing course presents. The course will be open for play the first week in April, weather permitting.
Ham is one of only 38 PGA master professional people certified in general management of golf courses in the nation and the only one in Michigan with these credentials. His team manages Hemlock, a well-known course in Ludington and 10 others in the state. “We are evaluating many things at Angels Crossing in order to make the course the very best experience possible,” Ham said. “We are starting on the greens with ‘deep-time’ aerification. This will help get air into the substructure of the greens and when cut vertically, they will play faster at about a 10 level being our target. The size of these greens is awesome. The architect who designed the course had a vision that they should play firm and fast and that’s what we hope to achieve.”
Schueneman has his PGA card and has been the pro at both public and private golf courses. “We want to specialize in customer service by installing a new web site that will be able to book tee times online,” he said. “It’s the wow factor we are after. That means making sure there are no little pieces of trash laying around on the grounds, that golf carts are clean and the service is impeccable.”
Schueneman is from River Valley near Three Oaks where he played baseball in high school and college. He didn’t take up golf until he was 26. He sports a 1.6 PGA handicap, which is highly competitive for any pro golfer. He served as golf professional most recently at Harbor Shores in Benton Harbor and before that at Lost Dunes in Bridgeman.
Pricing will remain the same for 18 holes at $49 per round. “This price is not low by local standards but for those driving from longer distances for an exceptional experience, it is the best value in the state,” Ham said. “We hope to cater to local traffic with incentive programs that will reflect our interest in leagues and special events.”
The team is managing the whole facility including the dining room, kitchen, pro shop and maintenance. They have retained Joe Tsui as the chef and hope to keep as many of the current employees as possible. The village of Vicksburg will own the golf shop but will be able to order equipment through the buying group that Renaissance represents to achieve better pricing, Ham said.