Have you joined, or considered joining, a country club?

The thread about jeans and country clubs got me thinking about country club membership in general, and baby boomers and country clubs in particular.

My grandfather, a Kansas lawyer, belonged to a country club. My father never joined a country club, but he was for many years a member of a downtown club, which gave him a place he could meet with clients downtown without having to have an office there.

But the idea of joining a country club never really occurred to me. I don’t think I have any relatives or reasonably close friends of my generation who belong to one. It’s just not on our radar.

So I’m interested in knowing whether Dopers of various age groups have joined, or have considered joining, a country club, and why.

Nope, never thought about it. After all, what does a country club have to offer? I mean, yeah, they’ve got a pool. Guess what? I got the entire household an unlimited pool pass at the local park this summer for under $70.00. It’s a place to go and hang out and have drinks. Yep, lots of other local places you can do that. The drinks are cheaper, and there’s no membership fee. I guess when my daughters get married, they could do it at the country club. After all those years of paying dues, I could have saved up a nice amount of cash to use on a hall or other facility.

No interest in a country club, thanks. Even if they allow jeans! :wink:

Possibly a related thread. And maybe not.

In Columbia, SC, traditionally one of the Country Clubs has given a membership to the commander of nearby Fort Jackson. In the 1980s, there was a somewhat potentially uncomforatable situation in which the base commander was Jewish, and apparently this country club’s by-laws didn’t admit members of that tribe. General Solomon, though, had a simple public statement that he didn’t go places where he wasn’t welcome.

Or at least that’s the way it was reported when it happened.

I don’t care to belong to any club that will have me as a member.

I have no need to join a country club, and I get along better with people who would… be out of place… at one than I do the people who would fit in.

Nope, never considered it. Of course, I’ve never golfed, which I thought was one of the main attractions to membership.

I don’t drink alcohol, and that would drastically limit my activities at our local club.

♫ I’m a member of a country club
‘Cause country music is a-what I love
♪ I drive an old Ford pick-up truck
I do my drink-in from a dixie cup
Yea I’m a bona-fide dancin’ fool ♫
I shoot a mighty mean game of pool
♫ At any honky-tonk roadside pub
Yeah, I’m a member of a country club ♪ ♫


To answer your question, hell no. If I was going to waste my money I’d do something more entertaining, like pitch quarters into the toilet.

Oh, they say they let the darkies and the kikes in now, it’s just that none of them ever apply, you know. (No, really, that’s what they say. It was in the paper, what, maybe a year ago?)

Is it like a golf club?

A couple we know joined a country club because it provided babysitting services.

I got a membership that came with a job I did. (Well, you had to get on a list; it took months.) The company had the memberships for business purposes, but I really never used it that way. For one thing, I don’t play golf.

When I was a kid, we moved to a town where the only pool was at the country club (well, except for the occasional pool in somebody’s back yard). Since we moved there from a place that not only had a pool in the back yard but a nearby ocean, we pretty much had to join the country club, and my mother did play golf. This was a place that really needed a public pool. (The deal was that they had once allowed swimming in the lake, but had closed it due to polio, but hadn’t caught up to reality yet–polio vaccine was around, but they were still scared of the lake. Yet they built the first public pool right by the lake. It wasn’t yet open when we moved.) After a couple of years it occurred to my mother that she really didn’t play that much golf and by then the public pool was open; the only other reason to be a member was the camaraderie and I guess that wasn’t so great.

I was a member of a tennis club for a few years. Couldn’t really call it a country club, as it was not in the country, and eight tennis courts don’t take up nearly as much room as a golf course. It also had racquetball courts, squash courts, an indoor pool/outdoor pool, weight room, aerobics room, running track, steam room, sauna, ski conditioning classes, yoga…It also has a daily rate, and if you go fewer than 3X a week, the daily rate is cheaper. So that’s what I do now.

A friend of mine is a member of a country club, and it’s very nice. She has to buy a certain amount of food from the food vendors every month so we always eat something, and it’s always good. Oddly, the drinks don’t count, but they are good, too. And they’ll bring them to you in the hot tub. Which is as close as I’ve ever gotten to a swim-up bar.

ETA: I just remembered the other reason for joining a country club. At the time they built the pools in this small, stupid town, they decided to let black people go into one pool. It wasn’t expressly for black people, but they would be allowed. But they wouldn’t be allowed in the other one. But then it looked like it might be illegal to let them into one pool and prevent them from going to the other pool. So the country club pool was a place where you would never, ever have to swim with black people. I think that was another reason my mother quit.

Most country clubs are based around a private golf course. They also have a clubhouse where there’s a bar and restaurant. Some clubs have facilities for tennis or swimming.

I’ve thought about it, but really only to be able to use the course. I don’t care about the rest of the options. Well I might make use of the pool if they had one, but it’s mostly for the golf. I haven’t because right now I don’t play enough golf to make it worthwhile.

I don’t know if I’ve ever heard the term before. Here, we have golf clubs, or tennis clubs, or curling clubs. No one joins a “country” club, that I’m aware of.

I have looked into golf club membership, but I’d need to get out an awful lot in order to get my money’s worth. And with two kids, I don’t have that amount of spare time.

I’m 34 and I’ve considered joining a country club or at least a swim and tennis club because all the public pools and the neighborhood pool in my area don’t open until noon on weekends, which I think is absolutely ridiculous. By the time they open, there’s usually a line out the door if it’s a public pool. And if it’s the neighborhood pool, the actual time the pool opens is flexible - it’s supposed to open at noon, but actual opening time is usually whenever the kid they hired as a lifeguard rolls out of bed and decides to show up, which can be as late as 1.

Plus, that’s getting very close to naptime for both my children. Don’t people have small children they take to the pool in the morning? Truthfully, it kind of baffles me why a pool would open so late. As a result, I haven’t been able to take my kids swimming yet this summer, though I really wanted to. The logistics just don’t work.

Whew. Sorry about the mini-rant. The pool thing is kind of a sore spot with me. It’s frustrating - we have free access to our neighborhood pool which is paid for out of our homeowners’ association dues, but we apparently won’t be able to take advantage of it until at least one of our children no longer needs a nap, or for about another year and a half. Most country clubs that have a pool have a swim team or something, so the pools at country clubs in our area generally open at 7 am with the swim team cleared out by 8 or 8:30 and the place open for member swimming.

I don’t drink or play golf, but I belong to the country club in my small city. My reasons?

  1. It is the quietest, most pleasant place to eat out in town.
  2. It has the best chef in town.
  3. It is has a clean, well-maintained, uncrowded pool.
  4. It has an excellent exercise facility.
  5. The type of membership I have, social, is not very expensive.

I’ve considered both a country club here and a yacht club back home.

The problem here is, most of the country club people at the one club we were invited to were pretentious. No, no, don’t get my wrong. I like “old money pretentious.” But these were obviously predominantely younger people who suddenly came into way too much money without any real social education. Given where I am and that they caught a major narco two kilometers from my apartment, I’d have a real concern over getting caught in crossfire between the clientele, if you know what I mean. In any case, the only reason I considered it is because it’s literally the only open, green space within walking distance from my home, and the restaurant and bar were awesome compared to the sad, empty places the commerical areas of my bedroom community have.

Yet… I still voted “considered it for business purposes” because I’ve thought of (still think of) joining one of local yacht clubs, which are (in my lowly income level) more popular than country clubs in my area of Michigan.

Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Mexico City, Mexico
Posts: 7,069

Michigan makes more sense.

I was a member of one when I was a kid. As far as I could tell, they didn’t exclude anyone, they were not snooty, and there was nothing pretentious about it. (My memory could be faulty, of course.) I didn’t play golf, but I used the pool, the only one available to us. I remember playing tennis there a few times. And we spent many hours in the snack bar, playing Earache My Eye on the juke box many, many, many times.

Half of my childhood summer memories are from that place.

I am a member of the local country club because of business reasons (primarily to help my dear bride with her charity work) and also because they have a really superior golf course to the others nearby. It is a wee bit snooty but now that I am ‘middle-aged’ I don’t feel the urge to act like Rodney Dangerfield any more. Maybe I am becoming a wee bit stuffy myself. heh