First Selectman Ellen Scalettar recently visited Homewood Acres, a family owned and operated golf course located on Racebrook Road. Siblings Cynthia Baldwin (Cindy) and Malcolm Baldwin Jr. (Mike) explained that their 50 acre 18-hole course was started by their grandparents’ neighbor, Dr. Eugene Cozzolino. Cozzolino decided that he wanted to create his own golfing experience and built a putting green on his property. This eventually migrated into six greens and nine tees that crisscrossed between the Baldwin and Cozzolino properties.
When Dr. Cozzolino retired and moved away, he left the Baldwin family with the framework for what they have expanded into the 18-hole course it is today. In addition to the 18 playable holes, there are also two practice holes that run along Racebrook Road.
Mike and Cindy have fond memories of playing golf in their backyard as children. The family still lives there—the course is in Cindy’s backyard and their mother, Susan, lives across the street and still participates in the operations of the course—and has been on the same land for 11 generations. The Baldwin family was one of the founding families to move to the area in the 1600s and was involved with the original establishment of the town of Woodbridge.
The course is currently maintained by Cindy’s spouse, Dan McKee, and Mike. Cindy explained that the course is 4,900 yards, shorter than a championship course but not as short as an executive course. “It doesn’t fit into any standard category,” she told Scalettar.
The course is membership-based and fees are paid annually. Prospective members can apply at any time of the year and are given a tour and a free round so that they can familiarize themselves with the course before becoming members. The course is maintained in such a way to allow members to play the course at any time of day or night, 12 months a year.
Homewood Acres is not like a traditional golf course you may be accustomed to. There are no tee times and members can play as they like and at their own pace. The course also offers a Men’s League that plays on Tuesday nights and a Women’s League on Wednesday mornings. “It’s a very casual golf course,” said Mike, adding that the greens are mowed every other day, unlike typical courses where they are mowed daily. This strategy is good for the environment by limiting the amount of pesticides applied and aids in keeping expenses down. This is one of the many ways that the family is able to keep the membership costs low.
“There’s a real family feel to this. You’re so unique in your model,” said Scalettar. “Does your course appeal to one type of golfer more than others?” she asked. “Since it’s a shorter course,” Cindy explained, “it is appealing to those who don’t enjoy par 5s. All holes are par 3s and 4s. Both Amity varsity and junior varsity golf teams have used the course for practice and matches.”
For more information on Homewood Acres, visit homewoodacres.com.