The Hideout Golf is an explosion in economic growth

Special to the Bulletin

LAKE BROWNWOOD — When Mick Jones stands on the deck at The Hideout Golf Club and Resort, he has a bird’s eye view of a beautiful landscape that is being touted as the best golf resort in Texas, according to Jerry Drummond, tournament director for the Texas Amputee Golf Championship slated for Sep. 28-29 at The Hideout.   

Drummond said the Southwest Amputee Golf Association (SWAGA) had searched for years to find the perfect venue for their state championship tournament and The Hideout came in first in every category.  “It is the perfect location for us, offering every amenity we were looking for, including the club’s new PGA golf pro Mick Jones.  Mick and his staff are a big part of why The Hideout is exploding in economic growth,” explained Drummond.

Jones has been at The Hideout for 15 months. He came to Brown County by way of golf courses in Bloomington, Illinois, and Lake of the Ozarks. 

“This young man is impressive,” Drummond said.  “The first thing that grabbed our attention was his service to our country. He retired from the Marine Corp after 20 years, six tours in Iraq and a Purple Heart. Twenty years of service to this country is big time in our book.

“I believe anytime we can say thank you to a veteran, we need to express our gratitude to them for their sacrifice and service to this country."

Drummond added, “at one time, like most young, talented golfers, Mick had dreams of playing on the PGA tour but after a stint on mini tours, he refocused his career from the PGA to his family and becoming a club professional and that was the road that led him to The Hideout."

Denise Hudson-Brian of Early Tourism, the anchor sponsor of the State Amputee Golf Championship, said she loves the human-interest side to the Mick Jones golf saga.

“Mick’s hopes of a PGA tour career are not completely gone," Hudson-Brian said. "He (now) has a protégé, his seven-year-old son, Carter Jones. In his own right, young Jones is making a golfing name for himself. He leads his age division on the West Texas Junior Champions Tour (WTJCT), and you will see Mick and Jennifer with Carter at every junior tournament he plays in.”

The Hideout management recognizes the importance of junior golf. Jones said The Hideout is now the home course for the Brownwood High School golf team. 

“Hosting the Brownwood High School golf team and junior golf tournaments is a way we can give back to the great game of golf and it’s a way we can be a part of this great community,” Jones said.

The Hideout will host a WTJCT tournament Sept. 12. This tournament kicks off the Fall Junior Golf Swing and will feature boys and girls ages 5 through 18. If you have a junior golfer who wants to play, go to the WTJCT website to register but hurry, as the tournament is filling up fast.

In 2019, 13,500 rounds of golf were played at The Hideout. This year those numbers will exceed 30 thousand rounds played on the golf course at Lake Brownwood, an indication of its growing popularity. 

Although the rounds of golf played from 2020 through today have almost tripled, 75 percent of those rounds played came from golfers who live outside of Brown County.  That’s a huge financial windfall for local restaurants, motels and businesses. 

Being centrally located makes The Hideout the perfect location for business meetings, family reunions and golf tournaments. 

"Almost any golf course in Texas would jump through hoops to host a golf tournament that will draw the media attention of the State Amputee Golf Championship, but our association chooses The Hideout," Drummond said. 

“This place is a golfing marvel. It is a true championship course that offers every amenity we are looking for."

The Hideout offers "lodging, a first-class restaurant and the hospitality is second to none,” Drummond said..    

However, there is another financial indicator that tells the story. Currently, there are 61 new homes under construction. People are coming here from every part of the United States including a couple from New Hampshire who recently built their home on the No. 14 fairway.

Jones said the success of The Hideout is a combination of many factors. “In every department, our staff is getting better and better and our facilities continue to grow and improve," Jones said.

He said the facility includes 17 cabins, three ranch houses and the lodge to accommodate overnight guests. "We have a beautiful swimming pool," Jones said. "There  is an RV park and a great playground for the kids. We have tennis, pickle ball, and a fitness center.  Plans are underway to construct as many as 30 boat slips and don’t forget, Lake Brownwood offers a great fishing experience." 

Jones said there is free live music in the spring and summer on Friday and Saturday nights. He said the dining facilities are "the best in this part of the state, and continue to get even better, thanks to our new chef David Wohrle from Chicago."

The menu features prime rib on Thursdays and every Friday is catfish night. Home grown vegetable are served from The Hideout's garden, Jones said.

Jones said the facility’s general manager, Stephen Bello, came to The Hideout from Boston by way of Florida.

Local businesses play a big part in the success of our championship golf tournaments, Drummond said.

Along with Early Tourism, other sponsors of the Texas State Amputee Golf Championship are Buck Masters, Underwood’s Barbecue Cafeteria, VFW Post 3278, MC Bank and Big Country Ford.