When Jeremy Goldblatt first encountered White Clay Creek Country Club, he was impressed.
Goldblatt couldn’t understand why more people didn’t know about the place. Here was a property with a championship golf layout; a sparkling, 40,000-square-foot clubhouse; a stocked pro shop; indoor and outdoor practice facilities; and a wine bar and grill overlooking the scenic fairway.
“It’s a great course,” says Goldblatt, the executive vice president of managed and leased services for KemperSports. “We saw it as a little bit of a hidden gem.”
If Goldblatt and the KemperSports team hit their goal, White Clay Creek will no longer be a secret. Earlier this year, the suburban Chicago company took over management of the property, which is adjacent to Delaware Park. It is the first foray into the state for KemperSports, which builds, owns and manages golf courses, resorts and other clubs in 24 states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland. And, unlike many situations in which an outside firm is contracted to manage a course, this is hardly a reclamation project. Golfers have enjoyed playing White Clay Creek since it opened in 2005.
“This is a fantastic club,” Goldblatt says. “It is in really good shape. Our goal is to elevate it and make sure the service is high-end and make sure the course conditions are high at all times.”
KemperSports’ goal is to maximize the number of rounds played each year by employing a dual approach of improved service for those who visit the club and greater efforts to improve White Clay Creek’s external awareness. The public club has five different tee placements on each hole and can play anywhere from 4,612 to 7,007 yards, meaning that golfers of all abilities can experience an enjoyable round.
The clubhouse includes locker rooms, banquet facilities and the Rail Wine Bar & Grille. Because the club is relatively new, there is no need for renovation or significant change. Goldblatt is convinced that if more people throughout the state and surrounding areas learn about the club, they will be eager to take advantage of its amenities.
“I think this club was not given the attention that it deserves, probably because it was part of the racetrack and casino,” Goldblatt posits. “It wasn’t the first thought. It’s our first thought.”
Goldblatt reports that Delaware Park had part ownership of White Clay Creek in the past, but that is not the case now. The club is not affiliated in any way with the track or casino, so it can build its own identity and move forward.
“This wasn’t something we had to change,” Goldblatt says. “Our job is to manage it and bring it consistency.” And to spread the word.
Related: This Delaware Golf Enthusiast Reflects on His Love of the Sport