Q&A with Kayla and Randall Reiman, owners of Chinook Valley Golf Course

Kayla and Randall Reiman

How long has the Chinook Valley Golf Course been around?
The course was finished being built in 1991 and officially opened in 1992. Chinook Valley has had a few different owners throughout the years. Kayla: My family has owned the golf course since 2010.

How is a golf course designed?
When we purchased Chinook Valley it was already established as a 9-hole golf course, so we didn’t have to go through the original building process. To build a golf course you need to have a design that works with the terrain of the land you have. There is always the option of hiring a golf course architect, but because of cost most golf courses in the Peace region are self-designed.

Does a golf course require a special type of grass?
Yes, it does. The greens require a specialty bentgrass. The grass in the fairways and tee-off boxes is a specialty hybrid mixture, consisting mainly of fescue and bluegrass.

When is the golf course open?
It is all weather-dependent, but it’s usually sometime in the last week of April to the first week of May. Once we have an opening date it’s posted on our website and Facebook page.

Is there such a thing as proper golf course etiquette?
Yes, golf course etiquette is widely practiced at all golf courses. On our scorecards we have a list of expected practices to be followed to protect the golf course, such as repairing ball marks on the greens. There is golf course etiquette not on our list that is common courtesy, such as keeping quiet while other golfers in your group are hitting their ball.

How much does noise such as a cell phone ringing interfere on the course?
This all depends on the golfer and if the noise bothers them. We haven’t found the noise to be a major issue. There is a casual atmosphere at our golf course which allows golfers to play music, if it doesn’t interfere with other golfers. We expect golfers to be courteous to other golfers on the course.

What are the most challenging holes on the course?
This can vary on the skill level of the golfer. Hole No. 1 can be challenging for beginners as you encounter two water hazards, but for the average golfer the course is more challenging the further along you get. Hole No. 9 is a tough hole to finish your round.

Do you host tournaments?
We host a variety of tournaments throughout the summer – everything from charity events to company outings. Anyone can book a tournament or event. We have a tournament information package available to those interested in booking an event with us. We only host a couple of our own tournaments, such as the Couples and the Farmers and Merchants. Most of our tournaments are organized by other groups, such as the Kinettes Hole-In-One, Compassion House, Central Peace Oilmen’s, Central Peace Firefighters and the Birchcliff Charity Golf Tournament for Stars.

What are your leagues like?
The leagues are run independently of the golf course by volunteers, and we assist them in any way we can. We offer discounted green fees to any non-members participating in league play as well as meal and drink specials. Each league determines what they will charge for their fees, and this money goes towards prizes and a year-end tournament for participants. Ladies League is on Tuesday evenings, and Men’s League is on Thursday evenings. Both leagues tee off at 6pm. Seniors League is every Wednesday starting at 10am. The leagues are open to the public, and further information is continually updated on our Facebook page. We also run a Junior Golf program every year. It runs Monday after school for 5 weeks (starting May 25th this year). We’ve been fortunate enough to have the Central Peace Oilmen’s Association sponsor the program in the past as well as purchase golf clubs for kids to use at no cost when they come golfing.

What is upkeep of the golf course like?
The grounds crew works every day on the maintenance of the course. The tees, fairways, and greens are mowed every day. Additional projects are done regularly to improve the course.

Does one have to be a member in order to visit the restaurant in the Club House?
Not at all. Everyone is welcome! Our restaurant is open to the public, with our hours starting at 8:30am daily in season. If you’re short on time we can do takeout orders as well. We also cater events at the clubhouse, such as birthday parties, which we have a buffet style menu available for.

You also have a camping area. Are these for members only?
We do have a camping area that is open to the public. In this area we have power-only sites as well as fully serviced sites. These lots can be reserved by the night, week, or month. There is also an area that is reserved for permanent campsites only, and these sites are paid for annually and require a yearly membership. We currently have a waiting list for our permanent sites, so we are hoping to expand our campground to include more yearly lots.