Maplewood Golf Club- What's the deal?
  • A new Maplewood resident went over to the club to inquire about joining. They were told membership is closed.
    What does that mean? no waiting list? Do you need to know a member?
    It appreaently was an off-putting experience.

    The person just wants to play golf near home. Any advice/ alternatives?
  • Many years ago the Club was "restricted", but I thought that now anyone could join.
  • Sounds very off-putting! If they are very interested maybe try talking to someone else. Maybe the person they spoke to didn't feel like "dealing" with customer service.

    There are many other great country clubs in the area, personally I wouldn'g go back if I was treated like that.
  • It's very expensive and I think you have to be sponsored by an existing member to join. My neighbors are members, so I can find out if you really want to know but I'd rather not even bring it up.

    I was told by the "Old Maplewoodian" who first introduced me to this town that for the longest time they did not allow Jews to join (and of course some other groups--you can guess) but evidently they have some now and they have changed the policy (on Jews--not sure about others). I was totally grossed out.

    My kid ended up swimming in the pool there though, as they have a deal worked out with the Y summer camp to use it for lessons.
  • Lucies_mom...Maplewood Country Club is a private club, just like most country clubs. You have to be "put up" or sponsored for membership by some members. The process varies by each country club, but usually a few families have to write letters on your behalf. You have to get "approved", etc. There is frequently a bond and monthly membership dues. Some clubs restrict golf on weekends for their junior members.

    Some country clubs can be very selective..they accept/don't accept certain people. Each has it's own "membership parameters". I hear MCC is not too bad. The selection thing that goes on at country clubs has never bothered me. It's a private club after all...people who seek out that type of thing like to be around people similar to themselves. It does feel unfair at times and can give you a bad taste in your mouth - not to mention hurt your feelings - but why in God's name would anyone ever want to join a club that did not want them? (And no...I am NOT a member)
  • Go to the nytimes.com website, do an archive search for "Maplewood Country Club" and you will soon find there are more than a "few" jews there judging by the wedding results listing rabbis. My grandparents were members for years and years and my parents had thier wedding reception there. Levels of restrictions usually is Protestants not letting anyone in... but we're catholic. Then its christians not letting jews in... but thats clearly not the case. So unless there are no black folks, so much for closed and restricted.

    -John
  • Groucho Marx said,
    "I won't belong to any organization that would have me as a member."
  • To play golf! That's the why!
    The public courses in this county are awful!
  • There are SEVERAL other options for Country Clubs in the area.

    Rock Spring is a very popular one for Maplewood Families.
    Baltastrul (sp)
    Canoe Brooks


    I know there are several others in the area, I just can't think of any at the moment.
  • If you just want to play golf aren't there public courses available, such as Francis Byrne in West Orange?

    Maplewood CC was notoriously unwelcoming to Jews decades ago. It is now a popular site for bar and bat mitzvahs.

    Canoe Brook and Baltusrol are very expensive and difficult to get into (and probably still restricted for all practical purposes unless you are very, very well connected)--cannot imagine someone who is miffed about Maplewood CC not feeling the others are far more offputting and quintessentially clubby.
  • I think the East Orange Golf Course which is in Short Hills (right off Parsonage Hill Rd) is quite nice too.
  • Maplewood CC average member is over 65 and Jewish. Not to be crass or anything.

    I'm sure the "membership is closed" comment meant that people can't just walk off the street and say, hey, I'd like to be a member.

    Talk around and find someone who is a member. Maybe they can invite you to dinner and you can meet a few other members who will then write letters of rec for you.
  • As of last year membership was still open and the rumor was they were recognizing the need for newer and younger members, though there are different levels of membership, depending on whether or not you wanted golf, tennis, or neither. I don't believe there was a bond required, but there is an amount due up front which, I think, depending on the level may be paid over three years. Dues are relatively moderate for a private club, as is the food allowance. Application for membership required three member recommendations and an interview. Forget Baltusrol and Canoe Brook. I believe the wait on the former is about 20 years and the latter not far behind. Assuming you qualify.
  • If you think MCC is elitist, just try to get past the guards at Baltusrol or Canoe Brook. The Lower Course at Baltusrol has held (I think) 6 or 7 majors. The waiting list (and initiation fee) are enormous.

    I hear the best bet around here is Rock Spring (although I have never played).

    If you want opinions about the course, I found it short but tight. It's a Par 71 and 5600 yards from the tips so you just need to place the tee shot well. I also believe it is on a flood zone so it may open later than most courses if there's a bad winter. Just something else to consider.
  • My father in law just told me a funny story. He's a member of one of those country clubs where only members can recommend you as a member. Fancy place and all that. They even require white clothes when playing tennis. So a guy was playing tennis there as a guest. He was a prominent and well know man. But he wasn't wearing white. So one of the employees walks up to him and says, as politely as possible, "I'm sorry, sir, but we only allow whites here." And then the employee slapped his own mouth, because he was saying it to a black man.

    :rolling:

    The guest actually didn't take offense, because he immediately understood what the employee meant.
  • More than a dozen years ago, I decided that a nice birthday present for my golf-playing father-in-law might be something from Baltusrol. My not-quite-12-year-old son and I drove over there on a blisteringly hot August day. We parked in the lot and got out of the car. We hadn't walked more than a few steps when the ranger came up on his golf cart with the little flag and stopped us. He said that we could not proceed because my son was wearing shorts. Baltusrol still requires long pants, not only of men on the golf course but apparently also of boys in the parking lot/pro shop. I asked the ranger if my shorts were okay and he said yes, but not my son's. We had to get back in the car and leave. Needless to say no one in our family owns any Baltusrol-logoed merchandise to this day.
  • I worked at The Ken Pharmacy after school when I was a teen. One of my duties was to drive "Mrs.Ken" home in the early evening. Ann, was getting on in years and would repeat stories to me often. Our route took us past the MCC. Every time we drove by she'd say, "Matt, can you believe that club did not allow jews to even enter the property. My husband was asked to leave a luncheon years ago, because he was jewish." I'd always feign surprise. By the time we'd stop at the Valley St. light she would laugh slightly and say (like clockwork) "Nowadays, that club is run by jews. I doubt they allow the christians." I always loved that drive home. She was a stellar woman. Wise as her years.
  • Last year i called the club and they were very open towards new members. They offered me an application and a tour of the club.

    I did not tell them any personal details on worship practices or other factors (age, sex, race...), so based on a real encounter last year, I would say their attitude is "OPEN". Based on the fact that the membership cannot be re-sold in the open market i decided not to join.
  • Posted By: Tom ReingoldMy father in law just told me a funny story. He's a member of one of those country clubs where only members can recommend you as a member. Fancy place and all that. They even require white clothes when playing tennis. So a guy was playing tennis there as a guest. He was a prominent and well know man. But he wasn't wearing white. So one of the employees walks up to him and says, as politely as possible, "I'm sorry, sir, but we only allow whites here." And then the employee slapped his own mouth, because he was saying it to a black man.

    :rolling:

    The guest actually didn't take offense, because he immediately understood what the employee meant.


    That is so funny Tom.
  • Had a similar story as Kathy about Baltusrol. Went there 2 years ago with my golf fanatic brother from western PA. Also in the summer and to buy him a golf shirt. We no sooner had parked the car and got out in our shorts when we were asked to leave. Can understand golf players required to wear pants, but visitors wanting to buy merchandise! Give me a break. What a bunch of elitist snobs!
  • I am pretty sure that within the last fifteen years or so the club converted from a member owned organization to a corporate owned "club", which would explain Viking's comment on reselling memberships as well as more relaxed membership rules.

    A business friend of mine likes to tell the story of the problems he had when he sponsored Bo Dietz for membership in a tony Jewish country club out on Long Island, so prejudice and restrictions aren't just a one way street.
  • I’m a junior member at a club and the whole wearing white while playing tennis isn’t rare. From our website for guests:

    TENNIS
    All players, regardless of age, shall wear traditional white attire.

    I don’t know the rules about MCC but our club pretty much follows what the above posters say. There is a monthly fee, a monthly minimum to be spent in the restaurants, you must buy your membership (often in the 6 figure range), and then sell your membership back when you leave. Also you must be ‘Put up’ for membership. Most clubs offer Junior memberships for the son / daughters of the members in order to keep the average age down, they’re much less expensive.
  • When we first moved to Maplewood years ago I was told that there were restricted hours/days when women could golf. If I recall correctly, women couldn't play on weekends and there was some other limitation.
  • A lot of clubs have that policy, including RCCC on SI (at least they did at one recent point). Some make exceptions with a low(er) handicap.
  • Yeah, golf... doncha jus' love it? and tennis, with its whites. Oh, lovely. All those rules and regs make me crazy. I can't be bother by all the trappings of snottiness. Plus, it means beng ''dressed'' and ''looking right''... hair and makeup and all that... just to get all perspired by playing the game? Walking around in the summer heat and humidity?
    Thanks but no thanks.

    I know all about those private clubs. Jews and other groups not welcomed? Here's another one for you: The CC where I grew up didn't allow Italians. Truth! I cannot even imagine the thought process that is unravelling in the brain of anyone who thinks this way. But it as true, back in the day.

    Same thing where my SIL grew up, in another state. Hard to believe but true. She now belongs to that same club, which just galls me. I do not know how she can even attend an event there, let alone support it with all its hefty fees, the huge bond, the spending requirements... oh, but it doesn't have to be in the restaurant, you can spend it in the pro shop, she tells me. AS IF! Sure, right... just tack $200.00 onto an already overpriced golf shirt and I'll be sure to buy it. Yeah, right.

    Is getting in that particular door a sign of having arrived? If this place which scorned her family based on heritage now smells of success to her, I suggest she check the soles of her beautiful, new golf shoes because something really stinks over there.
    And if my brother starts to talk with his jaw jutting out and his teeth closed, speaking in that rather clipped, upper-crust tone, with that instantly recognizable ''aren't-we-a-cut-above'' voice, I will not be held responsible for my actions.

    I'm sorry I cannot be more positive on the topic of CCs and their policies, past and present.

    Jersey girl
  • Tom
    Are you sure your father in law isn't pulling your leg with the story he told you? I've heard that story more then once. They first time was back in 1983 when some friends took me for the first time to Rascals (the comedy club that use to be in West Orange) to see Shirley from the TV show What's Happening/ She told that story as part of her routine.

    I've heard a couple of other people tell slightly different variations of it since then. :O)
    Post edited by just the aunt at 2007-08-25 11:35:56
  • Hmm, perhaps you're right. He is quite the jokester, and he tells his tales with total deadpan.
  • I understand from a friend of my mom's that the Par 3 in Short Hills is open to everyone. It's fairly inexpensive to join and not too bad a course.
  • We used to jump the fence and skinny-dip there. When the cops drove by, they would point their cruiser spotlights by the pool, so we'd just go underwater till they passed.

    I'm not sure why I just shared that.

  • because it's funny!

    I was once skinny dipping at a club pool with friends around midnight...the cops came so we jumped out grabbed our clothes and ran to the car. I had a CC towel wrapped around me (I was the driver) and decided I better not drive away with their towel...So I threw it out the window on the way down the driveway and drove home naky!
  • Years ago, a long-time Maplewoodian (Jewish) told the story of how a friend of hers (Italian) was recruiting her to join the Maplewood Women's Club. Recruitee said, "When did they start letting Jews join the Women's Club?" and her friend replied, "About the same time they started admitting Italians."

    Near me here in MD is the Chevy Chase Country Club which is historically WASP, while a few blocks up the road is another club which is historically Catholic, and then another couple of miles away is the Jewish country club. I am fairly confident that none of them is restricted nowadays, although there is a club not too far away that is all-male.
  • Lets get back to the skinny-dipping thead drift. This thread was showing some real potential! I'd say more, but I'm at work so it's probably not a good idea.
  • We skinny-dipped there for or five times one summer. One time, it was just me and 3-4 of us guys. We were there for about a half hour when some girls showed up. Take one hot summer, horny kids barely a year into college...well, this is a family website, I'll leave it at that.

  • The club that I belong to has a brochure describing its history. The history carefully notes when they admitted people of color (i.e., blacks), women, and Democrats. The dates very prominently displayed make it obvious that blacks and women were admitted long before Democrats.
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