Members at Hartefeld National Golf Club and regulars at Mountain Branch Golf Club can breathe a sigh of relief. Employees, too, for that matter.
The new owners say they do not plan big changes.
"We don't have any interest in changing the names or anything else about Hartefeld or Mountain Branch," Blake Walker, one of two partners in Pegasus Golf Partners, said yesterday.
"I think the only change people will notice is the enhanced playing conditions," Walker said.
Hartefeld, a 12-year-old private club in Avondale, Chester County, will remain private, Walker said. Mountain Branch, in Joppa, Md., which opened in 2002, will remain a daily-fee club.
Pegasus, headquartered in Dallas, announced Friday that it had acquired the two courses for an undisclosed amount from Forewinds Hospitality, which had owned the sister courses since 2005.
Walker said Pegasus was looking to buy more courses in the area. It entered the market last year when it bought Broad Run Golfers' Club in West Chester (formerly Tattersall Golf Club).
"We don't have a specific number in mind," Walker said. "We just look at opportunities as they become available."
Walker said he approached Forewinds about the deal.
Since the firm now owns three courses in the area and is looking for more, it is reasonable to wonder who, or what, Pegasus Golf Partners is.
Although it is a private investment concern and few details are public, Walker provided some information.
After a career spent mostly acquiring courses and resorts for other companies, including Club Corp., Walker and a partner, Al Troup of Washington, lined up investors and formed Pegasus Golf Partners in 2003.
Hartefeld and Mountain Branch are their 11th and 12th properties, with the others being a mix of private and public facilities, including one each in Chicago and Detroit, two each in Cincinnati and Milwaukee and three in Dallas-Fort Worth.
Walker said the intention is not to quickly flip the properties for a fast buck. So far, he said, Pegasus has sold only one course it acquired.
"Golf is our core business," Walker said. "We invest in golf courses. We keep them."
Like Broad Run and the other Pegasus courses, the management of Hartefeld and Mountain Branch will be turned over to EAGL Golf, which operates about 60 courses nationwide.