The Streamside Golf Course in Winterport, which was resurrected in 1998 by Galen Wellman after it had sat dormant since 1970, was sold by Wellman last summer and will no longer be a golf course.
The last day of play was Sept. 22.
Wellman sold the property to Doug Solman, the president of Maine Distributors, who verified that it will be for his own personal use.
Streamside was a 2,683-yard, par-36 nine-hole course and there is also a clubhouse and a barn on the property.
The sale price was believed to be in the vicinity of $400,000 but Wellman would not disclose the financial terms. He put it on the market in June and it sold within a few weeks.
“I was kind of surprised,” said Wellman, adding that he is glad he sold it to a nice person like Solman.
Several Maine golf courses have gone by the wayside in recent years.
Katahdin Country Club in Milo closed earlier this year after 90 years in business, while Sable Oaks Golf Club in South Portland went out of business in 2019. Great Cove Golf Course in Roque Bluffs was shut down in 2017 and Kenduskeag Golf and Country Club was sold in 2016 and did not reopen.
According to the National Golf Foundation, the number of golf courses nationwide has dropped by about 10 percent since 2006.
Wellman, a Winterport native who will soon turn 64, said he had been considering selling the course for some time and that the COVID-19 restrictions were the last straw.
He has since relocated to The Villages in central Florida and is working part time at a golf course there.
Wellman explained that although Streamside was doing as well if not better than most years in terms of the amount it was played, the state’s restrictions concerning food and alcohol distribution were impactful.
“I let the alcohol and food licenses [lapse]. I didn’t want to deal with it,” Wellman said.
The course formerly hosted weddings in the barn, but that business also went by the wayside.
“To be honest, I didn’t like the way the state was leaning toward that stuff. I didn’t want the government telling me what to do and what not to do,” Wellman said.
He remembers back when the course was in operation from 1957-1970.
“A lot of people from all over played there,” he said. “It was open before the Bangor Muni.”
Bangor Municipal Golf Course opened in 1964.
After it closed the first time, it sat idle until Wellman bought it in 1998.
“It was a hayfield. We had to start from scratch,” he said.
Wellman described operating the course as a labor of love and said he didn’t buy it to try to make money.
“I met an awful lot of nice people there,” he said. “There are a lot of guys out there who have been with me from the beginning. Most of us are getting longer in the tooth, if you know what I mean.
“It was through the efforts of the members that enabled us to keep it going,” he added.