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Kevin McKinley | Shoulder Season Prepping for Golf at Treetops

Michigan Business Beat
April 7, 2020 3:00 PM


Chris Holman hears the latest coming from Treetops Resort, Gaylord, MI, where they continue to prepare for the upcoming golf season. He speaks with Kevin McKinley, Director of Golf and Ski, for Treetops.

It's shoulder season in Gaylord, but this spring there's the additional factor of limitations put in place due to the current COVID-19 situation.

Find Chris' full interview with Kevin below

For additional information on how your business can better handle the issues surrounding the coronavirus please visit Michigan Business Network's Resource Center.

Treetops Resort's Updates concerning COVID-19:

Monday, April 6, 2020

At the present time, Governor Whitmer's Stay at Home, Stay Safe Executive Order remains in effect until April 13, 2020.  However, there are indications that this order will be extended.  Regardless of whether this happens or not, Treetops has made the decision to remain closed past April 13, 2020 with a reopen date of no sooner than May 1, 2020.  We will open on this date ONLY if the following conditions exist:

  • It is legal to do so based on National, Statewide and/or Local orders.
  • We feel that we can open our operation(s) in concert with keeping our staff, our guests and our community safe.  We will continue to monitor CDC recommendations as well as best practices being followed by our industry.

We will continue to update this page as we make decisions pertaining to our operations and how they relate to COVID-19.

Monday, March 23, 2020

This morning, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-21 which asks the residents of the State of Michigan to Stay Home and Stay Safe until April 13, 2020.  This action is necessary  to significantly slow the spread of COVID-19 and ultimately save precious lives in our state and beyond.

At Treetops, we've taken the necessary steps to limit the number of employees that are physically at work by setting up parameters for many to work from home.  This will allow us to continue to take your reservations for this upcoming golf season as we anticipate that these safety measures will allow us to open as planned in late April.

Additionally, we are permitted to have a limited number of key personnel report to work in order to maintain the value of inventory and equipment, ensure security, process transactions and/or facilitate the ability for employees to work remotely.  We have identified and notified these individuals giving them to option to report to work if they feel comfortable doing so.  To ensure that these employees and their families are safe, we'll be instituting the following safety/security measures effective at midnight tonight:

  1. All Treetops Property will be under restricted entry procedures for all personnel until further notice.
  2. All personnel requiring access to Treetops must coordinate with the Safety/Security Office prior to entry.
  3. Essential personnel (as designated by the Assistant General Manager) will check in with the Safety/Security Office prior to proceeding to their workplace.
  4. Safety/Security Staff (wearing protective mask and gloves) will meet essential personnel and check their temperature (an elevated temperature in combination with respiratory symptoms are the best indicator of possible infection)
  5. Safety/Security Staff will record name, location, anticipated length of stay, time and date for all personnel entering Treetops Resort Property (including the Safety and Security Team and the Assistant General Manager)
  6. Safety/Security staff will disinfect and sterilize the thermometer and protective equipment between each health check using 60% alcohol based product.
  7. Safety/Security Staff will make periodic checks of personnel while here on Treetops Resort Property.
  8. All personnel departing Treetops Resort Property are required to check out with the Safety/Security Office prior to leaving the property.
  9. All departing personnel will have their temperatures checked prior to departure or re-entry AND to ensure their workplace has been sanitized.
  10. All departure information will be recorded by Safety/Security Staff.

While on Treetops Resort Property, all personnel should:

  • Wash hands frequently and sanitize equipment and workspace
  • Do not share workspace and equipment if at all possible
  • Maintain at least 6 feet distance when at all possible
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Ensure you and others are covering their mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing
  • If you have a fever, cough or have difficulty breathing, stay home and seek medical attention via phone

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-20 which added additional places of business to the list of mandated closures that was originally encompassed in Executive Order 2020-9.  Thus, we have extended the closure of all resort operations until no sooner than April 14.  We will continue to update you on our reopening date on any of our resort operations.

Our plan is to open the Jones Masterpiece for golf on Friday, April 24th assuming that all authorities in place deem that it is legal and safe to do so.

We are encouraged to see that currently golf courses and other outdoor fields of play are able to stay open and that many of our colleagues in the golf business are finding ways to safely operate their courses. We will continue to glean information and best practices from them for when it is time for us to open our facility in late April. In the meantime, we encourage you to get out and play golf, keeping social distancing in mind. Below are a few tips that you can follow:

  • If you are sick or are feeling sick, do not go to the golf course.
  • Carry hand sanitizer and wash your hands as frequently as every hole or more.
  • If you are riding in a golf cart, have only one person drive the entire round so the passenger can avoid touching surfaces the driver has touched and the passenger should walk between shots whenever possible.
  • Some courses are employing alternative payment methods that are touchless. Take advantage of these if available.
  • On the course, practice social distancing (stay at least 6 feet away from others) as much as possible.
  • Take advantage of the 2019 USGA rules change regarding leaving the pin in and leave it in when putting to avoid the unnecessary touching of surfaces.
  • Do not pick up playing partners' clubs.
  • Forego the traditional post-round handshake. Use your imagination as to how to thank your playing partners for the game.
  • After your round, throw away all of your own trash from the golf cart so there is less potential exposure to the golf course staff.

Monday, March 16, 2020

After careful consideration of the health and safety of our guests, our employees and our community, Treetops has made the difficult decision to close all resort operations effective at the end of business on Monday, March 16, which means that our 2019-20 Snowsports season will come to an end.

At this time, we plan to resume operations for hotel and lodging, Spa and Salon, Child Care, and Food & Beverage on Monday, April 6, 2020 unless otherwise communicated, as we all know how ever-changing this situation is. Individuals who had lodging reservations during this time period will be contacted to arrange cancellation or rescheduling. Individuals who had purchased advance lift tickets, lessons or rentals during this period have been fully refunded.

We plan to use this time to deep clean the resort and complete essential maintenance projects that are difficult to complete when our resort operations are functioning. This will allow us to continue to employ a cross-section of our staff as well as ensure that our facilities are clean and ready for the much anticipated arrival of our guests when it is safe for them to return.

We understand that these times may put undue stress on our valued employees, so we have made the decision to share food items that would have been utilized by our guests during this closure to help ensure that their families are taken care of.

We will continue to closely monitor the situation surrounding COVID-19 and will work diligently to communicate any changes to the above plan with our guests and employees as they happen.

  • Springtime golfer Treetops May 2019

Michigan Business Beat, hosted by Chris Holman, discusses economic development, new or unusual entrepreneurial initiatives, and successful business practices from different regions and industries around Michigan with a wide range of entrepreneurs and business leaders.

8:00 AM every Monday through Friday
Replay: 8:00 AM, 2:00 PM, 8:00 PM, 2:00 AM The music for 'Michigan Business Beat' is graciously shared use of Phil Denny's "Traffic Jam" off his 2012 CD 'Crossover'

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