(Dataw Island, S.C.) December 15, 2011 – Dataw Island Club’s popular Cotton Dike Golf Course reopens for play this week following a much-anticipated, multi-million dollar facelift. The Tom Fazio-designed course, renowned for its stunning views of Jenkins Creek and the surrounding tidal marshes, has been updated to meet modern golf standards and improve playability for members and guests.

As part of the six-month renovation project, 17 of the greens were cored out and re-contoured. All of the greens on the 18-hole course, as well as the putting green and chipping area near the Clubhouse were re-grassed with MiniVerde Ultra Dwarf Bermuda grass, providing a smooth consistent putting surface for players. Fairways were converted to Celebration Bermuda, a grass better suited for shade and heat, and tee boxes were reseeded with Zoysia, another blend that does well on tree-lined courses.

In addition, the short game practice facility was expanded and cart paths straightened and upgraded from aging asphalt to smooth concrete.

Atlanta’s Billy Fuller Golf Design oversaw the work, part of a $5.4-million project that also will include the renovation of Dataw Island’s Morgan River course next spring. Cotton Dike’s makeover will ensure “the club remains competitive with the marketplace for the next 20 to 30 years,” Fuller said.

A former superintendent of Augusta National Golf Club and Design Associate and Senior Agronomist with Cupp Design, Fuller has completed eight major renovations of prestigious golf courses across the country since opening the company in 2004. His design work has earned the praise and recognition of Sports Illustrated, the LPGA Tour and Golf Week.

An important element of the Cotton Dike renovation included the replacement of the now-antiquated hydraulic drainage system that was installed when the course was built in 1985. Once Lowcountry marshland, the course terrain was drained a century ago by dikes built to create additional land for cotton fields during the great plantation days of Dataw Island. Almost half of the 18 holes lie along the marsh and the winding creek.

Bunkers also were improved with new drainage, sand and contouring. Lake banks were restored in numerous areas, trees were pruned to allow more sunlight on the fairways and greens and golf cart parking was enhanced at the driving range.

“The newly renovated Cotton dike course turned out wonderfully and will be a great improvement in condition and design,” said Ted Bartlett, general manager and chief operating officer of the Dataw Island Club. “It’s a testament to the club’s commitment to maintaining the finest amenities and our investment in the future.”

Next April, work will begin on Morgan River, the signature Arthur Hills course featuring its own dramatic vistas of the Morgan River and the savannas beyond. The renovation of this Par-72 course is expected to be completed in September 2012.

Dataw Island
Located just outside the historic seaport town of Beaufort, S.C., Dataw Island is recognized as one of the top coastal residential communities in the Southeast. The secluded 870-acre gated community offers residents the best in South Carolina Lowcountry living with an impressive array of amenities that includes two 18-hole golf courses, a riverfront tennis and swimming pool complex, a grand clubhouse, full-service marina and a 16,000-square-foot community center.

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