People Matter: On Par with the People of Lancaster

Will Ford

Will is a Lancaster native and graduated from Buford High School. During high school, Will worked a summer job at the Lancaster Golf Course and knew this is what he wanted to do this for the rest of his life. Will graduated from Georgetown Technical College with a degree in golf and sports turf management. He married Tori and began married life in Georgetown, SC. After working for six years at a golf course in Georgetown, Will and Tori moved back to Lancaster to be with their family. At the time, Edgewater was looking for an assistant golf pro and Will was offered the job. Everything seemed to fall into place because one year later his boss retired and Will was promoted to lead superintendent of Edgewater golf course, marina, and dry storage. Will and Tori have been married for seven years and have two children; Emmett and Adalyn along with their dog, Bear.

Like many public amenities during the current pandemic, Edgewater has made many changes to ensure the safety and comfort of their players. One major change is that the Pro Shop is closed to the public and drive thru windows have been set up for a quick and safe check in. Golf carts are washed inside and out after every use and an additional sanitizer is being used between use. Out on the course, all ball washers and water coolers have been taken down. They have also removed all rakes from the bunkers and added individual rakes to each golf cart so that the players can safely maintain the course while playing. Will also implemented putting pool noodles at each hole to prevent contact when putting on the greens and sanitizing the flags each day. When the pandemic started, they had a golf cart shortage, and ended up having to rent additional carts to keep social distancing between players so that they could all have their own personal carts.

will ford

Will says despite the pandemic and social distancing orders, their play is up big time! They had 266 golfers in one day making it beyond a course record. Will believes that while people are out of work and confined to staying home and away from others, people have also gotten bored and golf is the perfect balance to enjoy themselves while also maintaining safety regulations. He said while some businesses have slowed, the golf industry has seen an extreme influx and interest in the sport in the past four months.

Although Will does not get stressed out, his biggest challenge has not necessarily been the virus, but the increase in foot traffic. Maintaining the course has taken a toll on the staff and grounds keepers because of the surplus in golfers. Will’s goal is to always give people a great experience, meaning going above and beyond to not only maintain the course, but also keeping the players and staff safe. His word of advice to people during the pandemic is to always look for the silver lining, especially in doing things you haven’t done in a while and you want get discouraged.