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Post-Katrina repairs on track at Bay Breeze

KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Repairs to Keesler's Bay Breeze Golf Course are on schedule, according to Tama Manu, manager. 

To date, approximately $4.5 million has been allocated to put course back in shape following extensive damage from Hurricane Katrina. 

"The irrigation system is fully functional, and all the damaged fairways and cart paths have been repaired," Manu said. "The lake was drained, silt removed, a liner was installed and covered with clay, and the lake refilled. 

"The greens project resulted in redesigning and replacing all the greens to meet U.S. Golf Association standards, and redesigning and reshaping the bunkers for better playability and improved appearance," he continued. "The greens have also been re-seeded with a new certified Tifdwarf Bermuda grass." 

There are still things left to be done such as repairing the landscaping, which begins next week, and minor repairs from damage caused during construction. 

"Although the basic course remains the same, enhanced appearance and playability is evident on every hole," Mr. Manu said. 

If the weather cooperates, Bay Breeze will reopen for play early this fall. 

In the meantime, Keesler golfers can play at the Naval Construction Battalion Center's course in Gulfport, or take advantage of military discounts offered at Gulf Hills and St. Andrews courses in Ocean Springs. 

The driving range, which isn't affected by the restoration project, remains open 7 a.m. to dusk daily. Balls are purchased from the ball machine for $2 a bucket.