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Eagle Point course being sold to Arizona group

Eagle Point Golf Club opened in 1996, followed four years later by construction of the clubhouse (foreground). Photo courtesy of The Resort at Eagle Point.

Bob Hyer has long had ambitious plans for development within and around Eagle Point Golf Club.

Those projects remain on the agenda, but Hyer, who for nearly eight years has owned the property — dubbed The Resort at Eagle Point since chalets were built four years ago — won’t be on hand to see them through.

Hyer is in the process of selling the course and surrounding property to a Phoenix, Arizona, group, Parks Legacy Project USA, which specializes in sustaining and enhancing courses through residential management.

The two sides began discussing options eight months ago. They reached an agreement that will transfer the centerpiece, the 18-hole Robert Trent Jones, Jr.-designed championship course, as well as the 12-unit chalet structure and a couple land parcels Hyer acquired in recent years that are adjacent to the course.

Closing is expected in mid-May. Terms were not disclosed.

Hyer, 66, cited family interests and the timing of business opportunities as primary reasons he and his wife, Chana, decided to sell.

They bought the course in 2013, moving from the Vancouver, Washington, area and fulfilling a dream of Bob’s, an avid golfer. For it to be a Trent Jones, Jr., design was a bonus, as Hyer has long been a fan of his architecture.

The Hyers have family, including grandchildren, in southern Washington and plan to return there. Their house, above Eagle Point’s 17th tee box and overlooking the course, went on the market a couple days ago.

The pending move is bittersweet, he said.

“That’s the phrase that’s been coming up more often than not lately, and both my wife and I say, yes, it’s bittersweet,” he said.

“The story with the golf course, we’ve put our heart and soul, blood, sweat and tears and money into it over the last almost eight years. It’s been one of those things that’s had a lot of serendipitous great things happen that we probably never would have had the opportunity to do or experience without it. So it’s been good.”

In recent years, Hyer purchased about five acres above the 15th green off Shasta Avenue and hired a firm to design a small, gated community of town houses that would overlook the back nine, called Fairway View. He and Chana intended to build a house there as well, he said.

But construction never began as the chalets took precedence, and when that project worked well, Hyer decided to sell the Fairway View property.

Meanwhile, he bought 9.85 acres on Alta Vista Road along the ninth fairway that at one time was expected to become hotel and town house property, in part because he didn’t want someone to come in and potentially pull from his lodging business.

While trying to move the Fairway View parcel, Hyer was put in touch with Parks Legacy.

They discussed various packages and partnerships — Hyer wasn’t interested in joining forces — before the Arizona group offered to buy the whole kit and caboodle at a price Hyer said he couldn’t turn down.

“Timing-wise,” said Hyer, “it worked out to make the move, and it felt like they could take it to the next level.

“That’s the only reason we were interested, really, in selling to them. We didn’t want somebody coming in and doing something that, more or less, didn’t help it grow and help the community grow. This seemed to be a good fit for them to do it, and the timing was right for us.”

Parks Legacy was formed several years ago by the Mishkin family, father Alan and son Keith. Among the board members is Forrest Richardson, president of the American Society of Golf Course Architects.

The group has for the past three years searched Washington, Oregon and California — its target market area — for courses that are “well positioned and well preserved,” said Bill Rowland, Parks Legacy’s chief development officer.

“Golf is the thing we value the most in the property,” said Rowland, “but we use residential development as a way to make sure we’re able to reduce the debt.”

In Eagle Point, they found an appealing site, both for the quality of the golf course, which opened in 1996 and was the only one of nearly 300 Trent Jones, Jr., courses the famed designer owned.

The space to develop more lodging and housing was paramount.

The game plan for Parks Legacy is to keep the Eagle Point operation intact, said Rowland.

The first 100 days will be used to work with existing managers to make future plans. Among the goals are enhancing the clubhouse, restaurant and banquet facilities, expanding lodging, then building housing on the adjoining parcels.

There is approval in place for an additional 12 chalets, and Rowland said that project will begin soon, with the hope of opening the new units near the start of summer next year.

There is room for about 20 other chalets, said Rowland, and approval is in place for 51 town houses on the Alta Vista property, but those projects aren’t likely to start this year.

The chalets have been exceedingly popular, said Hyer, even as their availability was reduced and travel restrictions were in place the past year because of COVID-19.

On the golf side, the new owners intend to create instruction and training facilities, youth programs and more opportunities to play shorter versions of the course.

“We want to enhance and encourage the next generation of golfers,” said Rowland, “and part of that is bringing in experts to teach training programs.”

Competitive tees will be preserved and tournament competition will continue to flourish, he said.

“But a lot of people benefit from the activity and need a shorter game, not a longer game,” said Rowland. “It’s a great course for the person who wants to play 7,000 yards, but it doesn’t have to be all those players. We’ve got a lot of slots available where people can play.”

Rowland called Eagle Point “a great course” and likened it to another Parks Legacy bought in Covington, Washington, called Druids Glen.

The same philosophy will be applied at each.

“This is a passion of a family that wants to create a legacy,” said Rowland. “That’s what Parks Legacy is all about, based on golf, and golf as an activity for the family. … It’s basically got to be a family game to make sense for the future, and that’s kind of what we’re trying to do.”

Reach sports editor Tim Trower at 541-776-4479, or email ttrower@rosebudmedia.com.