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August 1, 2019

Drive Shack Set to Reopen in Raleigh

By: Brett Friedlander, North State Journal

A diverse group of people gathered in the still unfinished lobby of North Carolina’s first Drive Shack location last week waiting to be interviewed for jobs at the soon-to-be-opened golf and entertainment facility.

Only this wasn’t your traditional job interview. In addition to answering the standard questions about their employment history and career goals, these candidates were also asked to put together Legos, role play with props and even run a relay race to determine where and how their individual skills might best be used.

“It’s a way of seeing who the natural leaders are, whose personalities might be best for customer service positions and things like that,” said Dan Godfrey, general manager of the Raleigh franchise. “It also gives them a taste of how we do things and what kind of company we are.” Drive Shack clearly isn’t your father’s kind of practice range.

In fact, while there will be a PGA Teaching Professional on staff – Campbell University graduate Jared Morrow has already been hired – and there will be a lot more to do than just hitting balls.

There is a full-service restaurant on the second floor and an indoor-outdoor bar on the third that Godfrey said will host comedy shows, band karaoke and live music on weekends. There is an arcade, a meeting room and entertainment space with full catering service for things such as receptions and corporate team-building activities.

“If you can dream it,” Godfrey said, “we can do it.” That goes for the golf, as well.

There are 96 climate-controlled hitting bays, each equipped with a full set of TaylorMade clubs and a automatic ball delivery device, seating for up to six, television monitors and wait service.

The hitting areas will also be equipped with TrackMan technology for swing data and on-course simulation.

For those less traditional players and youngsters, a number of target golf games will also be available. Standing on the third floor looking out at the green field dotted with colorful targets, faux water hazards and sand traps.

The Raleigh Drive Shack will become the company’s second location. The other, which has been in operation for about a year, is in Orlando, Florida. Further expansion is planned for West Palm Beach, Florida; Richmond, Virginia; New York City and New Orleans.

While Drive Shack is a national entity, Godfrey said the company has already begun efforts to “localize its product.” One way of doing that is holding an online competition to determine which North Carolina craft brewery will have a tap at the Drive Shack bar.