River Oaks to undergo big changes, become part of Meadow Greens

Published 10:18 am Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Mike Grinstead stands at the entrance to River Oaks Golf Club Tuesday afternoon. Grinstead, the owner of Meadow Greens Golf Course, has entered into a lease agreement with River Oaks and will combine the two courses into a 27-hole facility. -- Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

Local golfers won’t have to choose between Meadow Greens and River Oaks golf courses next year, as both courses will be operated under one 27-hole system.

Mike Grinstead, Meadow Greens owner, entered a long-term lease agreement with River Oaks owner Mike Olson last week, he said. He has since mailed about 500 newsletters regarding the changes, and he’s excited to have one of few 27-hole operations in the area.

“It will be, I think, one of the more unique facilities in the state,” he said.

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While the future course still lies covered in snow, Grinstead can already see the layout.

“It’s a really nice mix,” he added.

Grinstead grew up playing Ramsey Golf Course (now River Oaks), and knows how he wants to shape the course.

“So what we’re going to have is three distinct, nine-hole tracks,” he said.

Meadow Greens’ 18 holes will remain the same, while Grinstead will use the best holes of the River Oaks and eliminate some of the holes that have traditionally been difficult to maintain.

Grinstead will soon start construction on a large cart shed on the north side of the railroad tracks by the current driving range, along with making some infrastructure changes at Meadow Greens. He had no memberships that were rolling over from last year, so none of his previous members will be affected by the change. Grinstead will also honor any arrangements people had at River Oaks.

“All play and all business will go through Meadow Greens,” Grinstead added.

Though much of the transformation won’t begin until the golf season has already started, Grinstead’s plans won’t interfere with golfers too much, so they won’t have to worry.

“We plan on opening everything like we usually do: early,” Grinstead said.