By Doug Petrowski
Golfers have one less option for play in the area as the nine-hole Ballinger Lake Golf Course in Mountlake Terrace abruptly closed on Monday.
The management company for the golf course, Hardy Golf, posted a notice on Twitter and Facebook on Sunday stating, “Hardy Golf LLC will no longer be operating Ballinger Lake Golf Course for the City of Mountlake Terrace.” City crews were at the course early Monday morning posting similar notices on the clubhouse front door and “No Trespassing” signs on gates and fences.
The company’s online announcement added, “Hardy Golf LLC has appreciated all of the customers and their support over the years.”
Carol Hardy, Ballinger Lake Golf Course, declined to comment on the closure, but hinted that explanations may come at a later date. “We would love to share the story of why we had to leave,” she told MLTnews. “If you could give us just a couple of days to decompress we would appreciate it.”
The City of Mountlake Terrace was informed of the imminent closure of the course by a letter stating that Sunday, Nov. 4, was to be the final day of operation of Hardy Golf LLC.
City staff are looking into what actions it may take against the golf course management company. “Since Hardy Golf LLC has signed a lease agreement to operate the golf course through Dec. 31, 2015, the city will be reviewing what legal issues and options it may want to undertake given it appears that they are in default of its lease agreement,” City Manager John Caulfield said. “There is no provision in the lease agreement that allows Hardy Golf LLC to unilaterally terminate the lease agreement.”
The Mountlake Terrace City Council, City Manager Caulfield and City Attorney Gregory Schrag met in executive session following the council’s regular meeting on Monday evening to discuss, in part, options concerning the golf course closure.
Hardy Golf LLC took over management of Ballinger Lake Golf Course in 2005 after the former management company walked away. The facility had been closed for about 10 months before the husband-and-wife team of Tyrone and Carol Hardy opened the course under a new five-year lease with the City of Mountlake Terrace. A modified lease agreement was signed between Hardy Golf and the city in 2011.
The city is advising any customers or vendors wanting information concerning business dealings with Hardy Golf to contact them by phone at 425-696-4653, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by mail at Hardy Golf LLC, P.O. Box 55, Mountlake Terrace WA, 98043-0055.