FAIRBANKS—Contrary to rumors that have been floating around town most of the winter, the Fairbanks Golf Course on Farmers Loop will open this summer with Wendy Wisbon taking over for Tom Mulka as the course professional.
Wisbon, who is in her 28th year as a golf professional, served as the golf pro for the North Star Golf Club in 2008 and 2009.
“I was calling Tommy to get a reference for a possible job at Settler’s Bay in Wasilla, then Randy Wood called and asked if I would to come up and run the show and I accepted,” Wisbon said during a break from her Thursday evening round in southern California.
Wisbon worked as a teaching pro this past year in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.
Wisbon said her main responsibilities for this summer will be to oversee the pro shop, give golf lessons and run tournaments for the golf course owned by Randy Wood.
Wisbon said she will arrive in town early next week and the course is scheduled to open on May 20.
May is PGA Free Lesson Month sponsored by Play Golf America. Wisbon will participate by offering free 10-minute lessons on May 21 for golfers and non golfers. She plans to hold lessons from 9-11 a.m. and 3-5 p.m.
Wisbon said she may offer more free lessons on May 28.
“I am looking forward to providing a great summer of golf for the Fairbanks golfing community,” Wisbon wrote in an email to the News-Miner.
Attempts to reach course owner Randy Wood on Thursday evening were unsuccessful.
Mulka reportedly returned to New York after negotiations to buy the course from Wood were unsuccessful.
“All I know is that it was in the final stages, and then he didn’t buy it,” Wisbon said.
Wisbon played professionally around the world after a collegiate career at UCLA. She also served as an assistant coach for the men’s and women’s teams at her alma mater.
The target date for opening the North Star Golf Club on the Old Steese Highway is May 20.
“The course is drying out but the superintendent is not sure if it is just the surface and if we still have the ground thaw and wetness to deal with,” states the North Star website.
Season passes, lessons and gift cards can be purchased from the course’s webstore.
Drew Wahlin, Northerwest Section PGA pro, will arrive at the course near the end of May. He will have four interns from the University of Washington Stout Golf Enterprise Management Program to help with this summer’s activities.
Like the other two courses, the opening of Chena Bend Golf Course on Fort Wainwright is dependent on the weather. The course will most likely open sometime around Memorial Day Weekend.
The course plans to be open from 7:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 6:30 a.m.-10 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Contact the News-Miner sports department at 459-7581.