Local golf course struggles with flooding issues

Local News

ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) — Mark Twain Golf Course is having serious flooding issues on the fifth and sixth holes due to clogged draining pipes that are partially on a neighboring company’s property.

April showers bring May flowers, but Mark Twain Golf Course is stuck cleaning up after Mother Nature.

Jay Turcsik, General Manager at Mark Twain Golf Course, said a flooding issue on the course has negatively impacted their business for years.

“We have to close several holes down,” said Turcsik. “That is the most apparent thing. The other thing is fixing it. Once the water goes away, if there is mud and everything left, we have to go through re-seeding it. So, that is consuming as well.”

They are using a motorized pump to try and drain the excess water.

“That pump, there is another thing, [it takes] man hours moving that thing around,” said Turcsik. “Often in the little creek that sits off to the side of the sixth hole and the fifth hole. There are pipes going underground that go to the other side of the railroad tracks. They are pretty much plugged. [There is a] 36- inch pipe that probably has about 5 inches of gap for water to go through.”

The course has had issues with clearing the pipe as a portion of it is on the property of the company next door.

Despite only having 16 holes to play, their business has been doing well.

“Last year, we probably had one of our busier years despite the pandemic,” said Turcsik. “This year we were able to open in March, which is pretty good for courses in this area.”

Turcsik says golf is the one sport that has flourished when most have been restricted due to COVID-19.

“I think as far as the golf and getting outdoors, it is a good thing for people to come out and do,” said Turcsik. “They can stay six feet, three feet away, so I think golf courses are pretty inviting for that.”

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