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104-year-old Mason City Country Club building coming down
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104-year-old Mason City Country Club building coming down

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In 1916, the original clubhouse for the Mason City Country Club came into being. 

In 1974, members oversaw a large-scale renovation where the original structure was built around and bolstered.

Mason City Country Club

The Mason City Country Club is slated for demolition later this year.

By the end of 2020, the 104-year-old structure at 3331 19th St. SW will come down.

"I think it’s been a tough decision but it’s the right one because there is no sense in saving an old building that needs a lot of work," said Diane Julius, vice president of the Mason City Country Club Board of Directors.

According to her, the building is now too old, has problems with heating and cooling and is a bit too big for what the country club, which has been around since 1901, wants to do. 

"We need to right size," she said. "We will probably not plan to be a wedding and evening dinner venue … We’re starting fresh." 

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From a practical standpoint for the country club, that's meant utilizing its cabana for operations during the summer and fall. Financially, starting fresh includes some restructuring with memberships. According to Julius, the Mason City Country Club will still offer season passes, but there will also be a greater focus on equity membership, which will allow people to purchase stock in the course and weigh in on future decisions. 

"We’ve raised over $400,000 in equity memberships so that we can take this building down and actively plan to build a new one," she said.

Although there still isn't a firm timeline for a new building as Julius said the board is considering size, space, cost and function.

"We may end up functioning out of our cabana for the next year at least," she said.

At present, Julius said that the Mason City Country Club has about 100 active members and has managed to do OK during the COVID-19 pandemic by picking up customers from Minnesota.

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Jared McNett covers local government for the Globe Gazette. You can reach him at Jared.McNett@globegazette.com or by phone at 641-421-0527. Follow Jared on Twitter at @TwoHeadedBoy98.

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