Late this summer or early fall the greens and fairways at the Admiral Nimitz Golf Course will begin to change its look. According to Paul D. Vasquez general manager of the golf course; all 18 holes are scheduled for renovation.

"We plan to start the renovations on the greens in one to two months. … We plan on doing two greens at a time at four months from start to finish per green. We expect all will be complete within 40 months from now " he said.

Leif E. "Ed" Echols regional Morale Welfare and Recreation director for Naval Forces Marianas; told the Journal the total investment for renovations is in the six-figure range but couldn’t provide an exact figure because details are still being finalized.

The renovations include resurfacing the course with Sea Spray paspalum grass which is used in many golf courses in Hawaii and Florida with environments similar to Guam. Paspalum is a littoral warm-season grass suited to aquatic semi-aquatic and moist environments which is native to tropical and sub-tropical regions all over the world.

Vasquez said the Sea Spray grass keeps maintenance to a minimum because it tolerates salt water; instead of using chemicals the grounds crew can use salt water to kill weeds without harming the greens.

The Admiral Nimitz Golf Course crew is tasked with the renovation work on the greens. Vasquez said that although changing the grass doesn’t take long each phase includes a waiting time of two months for the grass to grow.

The course will stay open throughout the renovations with temporary greens open for golfers’ use while work is being done on others.

In addition to fresh fairways the renovations include new paint for the clubhouse improved drainage on the golf course and pushing up the greens all of which are within United States Golf Association specifications. "We’re not going to be doing anything crazy "¦ the difficulty of the course will remain the same " Vasquez said.

In addition Echols said a new restaurant "" the Game Time Sports Grill which is expected to open September or October "" will be replacing the current clubhouse restaurant.

"When I first got here [the course] was not very good " Vasquez who became the general manager in November 2006 said. Prior to working at the Admiral Nimitz Golf Course he was the head golf professional at the Meadowbrook Farms Golf Club in Houston Texas.

"It’s getting a lot better. "¦ These renovations are being undertaken in an attempt to provide first class recreation and facilities to military members and their families during their tour on Guam " Vasquez said. "They deserve nothing less."

Admiral Nimitz Golf Course is open to the public. Vasquez said "Golfers interested in playing do not have to be military to play at this golf course. We have a very player-friendly golf course that will appeal to golfers of all skill levels. We also provide instructional clinics each Saturday and Sunday starting at 9 a.m. and we also offer a junior golf program available to youth ages six through 17." MBJ