Originally created 02/11/06

Zoeller course coming to Aiken

The planned Clyde Johnston-Fuzzy Zoeller design at Woodside Plantation will be the fourth and final golf course in the Aiken residential development.

It has to be; there's no more land left.

"This would be the last course that you could put inside the gates," said Pat Cunning, the CEO of Sidewood Development, LLC, the holding company for Woodside Development Limited Partnership, which owns the land the course will be built on.

The course is being developed in the Hollow Creek Preserve portion of Woodside Plantation.

The Johnston-Zoeller course has already been routed by Johnston. Construction could start in "four to six weeks," Cunning said.

Nine holes should be open by 2007, Cunning said, though those holes won't be in the chronological order of the course.

"It's kind of unique; we're building Nos. 1-5 and 15-18 first," Cunning said.

It will be a private club, as are the other three courses at Woodside.

Woodside's Wisteria Course opened in 1987, the Plantation Course followed in 1990 and the Reserve Club at Woodside opened in 2002.

The Wisteria and Plantation courses are owned by ClubCorp and are not affiliated with the Reserve Club at Woodside.

The Reserve Club at Woodside also owns the planned Johnston-Zoeller course.

The name of the new course hasn't been determined, but Cunning said it "might have a name similar to the Reserve Club, like the Fuzzy Zoeller Course at the Reserve."

The two courses at The Reserve will have something else in common beside the names: They both have connections to Masters Tournament champions.

The Reserve Club was designed by Nicklaus Design, which is owned by six-time Masters champion Jack Nicklaus. It isn't a Nicklaus Signature Course, though; his son Steve, one of his design partners, designed it. It was named one of the top 10 best new private country clubs in 2003 by Golf Digest.

Zoeller won the 1979 Masters, becoming only the second player to win the tournament in his first appearance (Gene Sarazen also did it in 1935).

Since the late 1980s, Zoeller has occasionally collaborated with Johnston, of Clyde Johnston Designs, Inc., of Hilton Head Island, S.C.

Since Johnston's firm opened in 1987, he has done 54 designs or redesigns. He's completed five of those with Zoeller. Another one with Zoeller, Champions Pointe Golf Club in Memphis, Ind., is under construction.

Zoeller has his own design company, in conjunction with Fuzzy Zoeller Productions, Inc. But on the Woodside project, "Clyde is the architect and Fuzzy collaborates with him," Cunning said. "Fuzzy was contacted by Clyde because he's done things with him."

Cunning said Johnston first saw the property three months ago, "and has been up here numerous times and started the routing two months ago."

Cunning said Zoeller has not visited the site, but has seen the routing plan.

"He'll probably make a trip down between now and the Masters (April 6-9)," Cunning said.

Reach David Westin at (706) 724-0851 or david.westin@augustachronicle.com.

Johnston-Zoeller course Designs

Fuzzy Zoeller, the 1979 Masters Tournament champion, has collaborated on five completed courses with Clyde Johnston of Clyde Johnston Designs, Inc., of Hilton Head Island, S.C. They are teaming up for a yet-to-be-named course at Woodside Plantation in Aiken. Their previous courses:

- Jacksonville Golf and Country Club, Jacksonville, Fla. (1989)

- Island West Golf Club, Bluffton, S.C. (1991)

- Covered Bridge Golf Club, Sellersberg, Ind. (1994)

- Chestnut Hill GC, Fort Wayne, Ind. (1995)

- Timbergate Golf Coub, Edinburgh, Ind. (1999)

Source: Clyde Johnston Designs, Inc.


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