CREAM RIDGE, N.J. (PIX11) – Peace is often found on Cream Ridge’s pine tree-lined country roads, but this weekend’s storms brought chaos and damage to homes, farms and one of the town’s golf courses.
“I’m a member here, I just wanted to see what was going on,” said Les, a Whiting resident and a regular at Cream Ridge Golf Course.
He is playing the front nine since that’s all this weekend’s tornado damage is letting him play right now.
“I got the call yesterday about the storm damage, so curious to see exactly what, and it’s like, ‘wow,'” Les said.
On an otherwise beautiful day to be on the course, dozens of trees were ripped out of the ground, power lines were seen down, and one neighbor’s shed was wrapped around a tree, resulting from a confirmed EF-1 tornado with 90-mile-per-hour winds.
But golfers like Les are looking to get back out there again tomorrow.
“They’re working hard at getting everything back into shape and hopefully, by tomorrow, it’ll be opening up for 18 again,” said Les.
As many as 40 trees along the golf course were uprooted during the storm and ironically, many of the dead trees along the course ended up surviving, while many trees being cut by tree removers were the healthy, live ones.
“This is the first known tornado that’s actually been categorized [here],” Bob Lowrie, the general manager and one of the course owners. “It was ferocious. I was actually eating with my family in the restaurant Saturday night. It was sunny and it was a nice night. About 6:30, it really got dark fast and by 7 o’clock, the severe storm hit. We got a lot of hail, it looked like snow covered some places where the hail came down.”
Lowrie said the course would be open for 18 holes starting Wednesday, but it will be weeks before all of the downed trees are cleaned up.
“The worst damage, the worst weather conditions that we’ve had,” said Lowrie.