Saturday, August 25, 2012


Another resident thinks outside the box, offers creative ideas and gives us Food for Thought:

The Clubhouse

I have been to a fair number of Executive Board Meetings since the bond vote and not once has a board member or sub-committee discussed or addressed  in their monthly meeting notes our two failing operations, the clubhouse and golf course. It’s business as usual. Now, one would think that after May’s landslide vote, that’s all they would be talking about but the attitude seems to be that if we ignore it, it might just go away!  So I’ve decided to write about the elephant in the room, the clubhouse more notably, the restaurant.

At last month’s Executive Board meeting Ed Jarrett announced he would like to start a task force to address the clubhouse issues. A good idea some of us thought, so we contacted Ed about participating on his task force. No response. It seems he doesn’t want ordinary residents involved in his task force he wants the usual suspects, those he can manipulate, ultimately getting his way. Well, Ed here are my suggestions for the clubhouse:

First and foremost, we need to stop shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic. We need a new business model not, a patch job. We want to keep the golf course therefore we need a clubhouse to support the golfing operation. So here is a new model that will turn the corner for all residents.

The pub shall be open 7 days a week to support golfing activities 7 days a week. Pub food will be served consisting of a bar menu that includes pizza, among other things. The pub will be open to everyone. Staffing will consist of a bartender, waitress, cook, and dishwasher. There will be minimums for all golfers that will need to be increased. However, the minimum can be used on anything in the pub, including alcohol.  The theory behind this:  it’s your money and no one should tell you what to spend it on. Currently you can only spend your minimum on food; soda, coffee and alcoholic beverages are excluded. This is a drastic shift from today’s standard.  

There will no longer be dining room operations. If you are planning an event, it will be a catered event (by an outside caterer) at your expense. Events such as Ladies’ tea, district parties, golf award dinners will be scheduled with the clubhouse and the event will be priced out and catered to your specifications. This will give the party planner the opportunity to select and execute a theme and caterer for their party. An outside catering company will supply the food and staff (why should FW resident’s carrier the cost of staff salaries and benefits for these private parties). FW will supply the kitchen, tableware, and space free of charge to residents.   

One of the biggest expenses with any restaurant operation is staff salaries and benefits. If dining room operations are curtailed, we realize that people will be laid off, but sometimes businesses have to make difficult decision during difficult times. This is called “outsourcing” which is used by many businesses as well as the State of CT. Currently, Sodexho, a subsidiary of Marriott, services all food operations for State agencies.  If outsourcing is good enough for the state then it should be good enough for us. We can’t continue as we have. Perhaps the future will get brighter but for now, we have been under a dark cloud and all residents are looking for the light. This is the way out.

Stay tuned for my golf course model. Yes, we will have a golf course for everyone to enjoy!

Comments? You're welcome to email me at

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