Offerings to public at country club expand

Nick Johansen
The Red Oak Express

Residents of Red Oak and the surrounding area have a new, yet familiar, place to enjoy fine dining and entertainment.  
The Red Oak Country Club has lifted membership requirements on the restaurant and certain events at the club. The new guidelines have been in place for roughly a month. Red Oak Country Club Board President Lynette VanDenEinde said the decision to open up the club more to the public was an easy one.
“Times have changed, the people have changed, and we needed to make changes also. We need people, and we want to be a part of the community, and I think we’d fallen out of the concept of community relations, and we’re trying to get back to that. When it came to making this decision, the board did not have any concerns with getting more community involvement” said VanDenEinde. “Just the term ‘country club’ leads people to believe they aren’t welcome here, and that is the farthest thing from the truth; we are trying to overcome that stigma.”
Seeing more smiling faces and a positive/welcoming atmosphere, VanDenEinde said, is it’s own reward.  
“It’s a great feeling seeing people in the clubhouse and enjoying the facility. It’s an awesome facility. We’ve also had a number of families get a pool membership and the kids are enjoying our pool and are learning how to golf. Golf is something they can do for the rest of their lives, and some of our members are lifetime players. There are also events the family can do together,” commented VanDenEinde. “Seeing the clubhouse busy again makes it feel like we are on the right track. We built a new entertainment deck a couple of years ago, and it has been great seeing that full, and seeing the dining room full. It’s something we haven’t seen in a very long time.”
The country club restaurant is open to the public every day the club is open. In addition to the restaurant, VanDenEinde said there were some other events that are now open to the public.  
“We’ve opened up some of the golf tournaments to the public instead of limiting those to club members. One of the tournaments that will be open to the public that we’re looking forward to hosting next year is the parent/child tournament. We will list all of our tournaments on the website and social media. Debbie has brought back the sunset picnic and is opening that to the public as well,” VanDenEinde said.
The country club’s new manager is Debbie Allen. Allen said she’s been working hard to fill the new role.  
“I’m figuring it out, making things better, and adjusting the kinks that we had. I have a great team here that works with me as well. It’s going to be back to what people remember. There were some things being skipped over, and we’ve been working hard to get people back out here. I’ve been here for about three years, and it couldn’t be better,” Allen said.  
Allen said the food being served up at the country club is prepared by the former staff of Johnny’s Steakhouse.  
“He’s always wanted to do exciting new stuff, and he’s happy we’re allowing him to come up with great food ideas and help get the place packed with people,” stated Allen.  
Also, Allen said the feedback from members and non-members over the new changes has been overwhelmingly positive.  
“The feedback has been great. We had a burger basket night that drew 177 people. It was an adjustment, but we got it figured out, and have been working on table turnover and our communication to make things faster,” Allen commented.
To make things fair for club members, since the restaurant is now open to the public, we will be changing the menu to reflect Member/Non-member pricing. Allen and VanDenEinde encourage even those that don’t golf to consider their Social Membership and be able to attend all the functions they hold at the Red Oak Country Club plus the member meal pricing.  
Both VanDenEinde and Allen also urged any members of the public that hadn’t yet experienced the Red Oak County Club to come and check them out. More information can also be found at the website,,, or by calling 623-4281.

The Red Oak Express

2012 Commerce Drive
P.O. Box 377
Red Oak, IA 51566
Phone: 712-623-2566 Fax: 712-623-2568

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