New Hampshire governor Chris Sununu has been a proactive governor during the crisis, issuing early stay-at-home orders to protect citizens and require them to remain home.
Governor Sununu issued a stay-at-home order early on, requiring non-essential businesses to close and citizens to stay at home unless they had to go obtain emergency services, get food, get light exercise or work at an essential business. Golf courses were not considered essential, requiring them to close.
However, New Hampshire golf courses can once again open thanks to changes made by Governor Sununu.
In extending his stay-at-home order to May 31, golf courses will be allowed to open again. Golf courses will be allowed to re-open on May 11, provided courses follow restrictions of his Stay At Home 2.0 plan.
Courses are required to close gathering spaces, like clubhouses, locker rooms, lounges and the like. Golfers have been required to leave quickly after their rounds. Courses have taken precautions to remove shared surfaces like bunker rakes, ball washers and water coolers. Tee times have been spaced out, and golfers are required to observe social distancing guidelines. Cups and holes will be removed from practice greens.
Players cannot arrive any sooner than 15 minutes before their tee time. Tee times must be spaced at least 12 minutes apart, but foursomes can play. Carts are for single riders only, unless the passenger lives in the same house as the driver. Beverage carts are available on the course. Driving ranges and practice areas remain closed. Only New Hampshire residents are allowed to play.
This is great news for golfers in New Hampshire, as the state joins a growing group allowing golf courses to re-open after being closed for several weeks. Wisconsin re-opened on April 24. Minnesota announced a reversal of previous closures. Illinois and Pennsylvania courses re-open on May 1. New Jersey courses re-open May 2. Washington golf courses re-open on May 5.