Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Rebekah Lund
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

New, fully-automated driving range opens in Sturgeon Lake


August 2, 2018

Rebekah Lund

Divots Driving Range is set up on Market Street in Sturgeon Lake. Everything at Divots is fully-automated. After swiping your card, the balls come out of this chute. The driving range is open from dawn to dusk daily, with the exception of Monday, when the range is closed for regular maintenance.

Sturgeon Lake is home to a new, local business in the form of a driving range for golf enthusiasts. Divots, owned by Luke and Jackie Horton, and Luke's parents, LeeRay and Renee Horton, officially opened on June 6.

"We opened Divots because we felt there was a need in our community for a driving range. Since the golf course closed in Denham, the closest course for our local communities is either Carlton or Hinckley," Luke and Jackie said about their new business.

Their theme in this business launch is simplicity - starting with the name. "We came up with Divots after throwing around different 'golf' words, and it stuck. It's simple and easy to remember," Luke said.

Also simple is their entire setup. "We designed Divots to be self-sufficient; you swipe your card in the machine, and your bucket of balls is released," he said. "We want to stress to people that Divots is a fully automated business, therefore no employees will be here when you are here. We think some people drive by and don't see a car so they think we aren't open, but we are."

Right now, customers at Divots can buy a bucket of 60 balls for six dollars. Cullen Franek, a local golfer, took his two young children, Lucy and Henry, to Divots for a birthday experience. "We spent about two hours there. It's a good little driving range. It's affordable and a nice addition to the area," Franek said. Franek added that they plan to go back to the range in the future.

The business is open daily from dawn to dusk, weather permitting, of course. They do close on Monday afternoons for ball picking and mowing of the range.

"We aren't looking to get rich with this adventure," the owners said. "We just want people to have a place to go hit balls and improve their golf game." Luke is also committed to continual improvement of the range for his customers. "We hope to get gift cards and season passes available in the future," the owners said. So far, things are going well for Divots; "People are getting the word out and business has been pretty steady."

The owners hope more people come and check out their new endeavor. If you have any technical concerns while at the range, Luke's shop is right down the road, and you can call him at (218) 372-4232, or you can call or text either (218) 380-1951 or (218) 380-0956. The range is located at 87670 Market Street in Sturgeon Lake. Go swing some clubs at this local business!


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