ESSEX, Md. (WJZ) — For a while, golf had fallen flat, but Maryland is now seeing a resurgence in the sport.

As it happens, Maryland is a pretty unique place to take up golfing.

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“It’s a game that can be enjoyed regardless of your skill level. You don’t have to be a pro to come play golf,” said Dennis Raver, who owns Carroll County’s River Downs Golf Course with his wife, Trish. “You can go to Deep Creek or Ocean City. You can play in the mountains. You can play at the ocean, and Maryland is unique in that we do get all four seasons.”

In just the last year, golf has made a comeback.

Baltimore was in the national spotlight as host to the BMW Championship, which drew some of the world’s best players.

And it’s also proven to be a family-friendly, COVID-safe activity.

“There are about 160 golf courses in the state of Maryland, and only about 40 of them are private and the rest are for public play,” said Cindy Miller with the Maryland Office of Tourism.

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Some courses are reporting a 10-fold increase in play.

“We’ve heard rejuvenation, reboot, you name it,” said Joe Rahnis, director of golf operations for Baltimore County Golf.

Golf courses were some of the first businesses to reopen during the pandemic.

Both junior and retired golfers have returned to the sport at the Rocky Point Golf Course, Rahnis said. Others have tried it for the first time.

“Golf went flat for a while and, I think as awful as the pandemic was for golf itself, it really got people thinking about doing something they never thought about doing before,” Rahnis said.

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Rachel Menitoff