Jennifer Ortega

About Jennifer Ortega

Reporter and Fill-in Anchor on the weekends. Jennifer Ortega joins our team all the way from South Florida. She's worked for CBS 12 and Hola Tv in West Palm Beach. Although she's a long way from home, she's excited to be a part of the WCBI News Team.

Video: EMCC Has Plans For The Columbus Country Club

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) - The official takeover for the Columbus Country Club is next week has nearby property owners happy. When the country club was having financial troubles many worried that it would end up abandoned and overgrown like the Highlands in Startkville.

Three weeks ago, EMCC bought the Columbus country club for 1.6 million dollars, since then the community college has carefully been planning the take over what it plans to call Lion Hills. That includes membership plans, dealing with old members, recruiting new members and developing new programs.

“We’re looking at the ground, we’re looking at the building and we’re looking initialing at what we need to do to enhance what is already there because we intend to go in and try to make it much better,” said EMCC President Dr. Rick Young.

The college will meet with old members Monday and officially take over operation Tuesday. That’s good news for nearby property owners to hope a new and improved club will raise property value.

It’s a positive change many residents say they’re excited about.

“I’m excited about it staying open, I think that EMCC is a welcome addition and probably the best choice that we could have had for the country club,” said resident Anne Russell Bradley.

“The country club is a vital part of the community whether it’s privately owned or whether it’s publicly owned and with EMCC getting it, it just has an opportunity to reserve the resources and use them for benefit,” said resident Larry Swartz.

The community college plans to operate a state of the art culinary arts and turf management program at the club.

“We’re very excited about taking full control and we intend to operate this facility in a manner that will serve the area and that it will be a plus and it will be a reason for people to want to stay in our area or come to our area,” added President Young.

Young says they hope to have the first programs up and running by 2013.