Arizona governor Ducey clarifies if golf courses can remain open or must close
Golf Culture

Arizona governor Ducey clarifies if golf courses can remain open or must close


Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has been reluctant to take aggressive action to try to get his residents to stay at home, but on March 30, he enacted a stay-at-home order that is in effect from March 31 at 5 p.m. through April 30.

Arizona citizens are asked to remain at home unless they have to leave to get food, seek medical treatment, get outdoor exercise or go to work at an essential business.

In announcing the stay-at-home order, Governor Ducey has allowed golf courses to remain open throughout the duration of the order. Golf courses can also be maintained during this time.

Of course, courses could close voluntarily, and they could be ordered closed by a more specific ordinance at a local level.

“We do not want people to feel trapped or isolated in their homes. The weather is beautiful right now. Find ways to get out and enjoy it — with physical distancing,” Ducey said in announcing the order, looking to promote responsible and safe outdoor exercise.

Like many governors' orders, the Arizona stay-at-home order allows residents to leave their homes for outdoor exercise provided proper precautions are taken and social distancing is observed. That's become a new normal at golf courses around the United States that are able to remain open, with modified cups to prevent touching common surfaces, as well removing shared surfaces like bunker rakes, ball washers and water coolers.

Arizona's order is different from neighboring New Mexico, in which Governor Grisham closed golf courses to players but not for limited maintenance.

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Ryan Ballengee

Ryan Ballengee is founder and editor of Golf News Net. He has been writing and broadcasting about golf for nearly 20 years. Ballengee lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his family. He is currently a +2.6 USGA handicap, and he has covered dozens of major championships and professional golf tournaments. He likes writing about golf and making it more accessible by answering the complex questions fans have about the pro game or who want to understand how to play golf better.

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