White Oak congratulates neighbor on British Open win

Published 1:10 pm Friday, July 25, 2008

Fresh off his Open Championship title defense, Padraig is heading to White Oak to pick out the site of his first North American home, and he looks forward to meeting his new friends and neighbors at a gala in his honor, say White Oak developers.

Harrington is planning to visit White Oak, located off the Pea Ridge exit of Hwy. 74, in mid-August.

&dquo;White Oak is one of the most amazing and unique places I&up1;ve ever set eyes upon,&dquo; said Harrington. &dquo;The way they&squo;ve blended modern day amenities with an appreciation for traditional Irish culture is phenomenal. This place really feels like home. I can&squo;t think of a better place for my family to base ourselves and enjoy life while in North America.&dquo;

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

White Oak, which draws from its developers a distinctively Irish heritage, says it is planning an &dquo;Irish welcome&dquo; for the Open Champion when he visits his new home.

&dquo;We are excited Padraig has won back-to-back Open Championships and that he has chosen to become part of the White Oak family,&dquo; said Jennifer Gaffney of White Oak in a press release issued Thursday.

White Oak also provided information about other &dquo;happenings&dquo; at the development recently.

White Oak Partners recently signed an agreement with the Town of Rutherfordton to fund the installation of a sewer line to White Oak. The cost of the project is approximately $2.6 million, with White Oak contributing over $2.3 million. The installation of the line is scheduled to commence the end of August 2008.

White Oak has recently removed Michael Savidge as a partner. The development is now solely owned by Eugene Kinsella, managing partner, his brother Leonard Kinsella and&bsp; Austin MacHale.

The Irish developers say they are moving forward with the project at lightning speed and at present have completed the world-class practice facilities and seven holes of the golf course.

Within the next two months, 9 holes will be finished in preparation for a visit from Arnold Palmer and his team on October 24. Work has also commenced on lining of a 12-acre lake and construction of the golf course bridges. Local company Course Doctors Inc., is completing the work on the Arnold Palmer-designed course with director of golf course operations Ron Ritchie overseeing the work.

Gaffney moved from Ireland to Polk County in June to work full time with the White Oak development team, assisting with sales, marketing and public relations efforts.

She previously worked with Doonbeg Golf Club in Ireland from 2002 to 2006, which is owned by Kiawah Development Partners, Kiawah Island, S.C. She served there as golf shop manager, director of membership services and revenue manager.