This industry classification covers sports and recreation clubs that are restricted to use by members and their guests. Country, golf, tennis, yacht, and amateur sports and recreation clubs are included in this industry. Health clubs and other fitness facilities are classified in SIC 7991: Physical Fitness Facilities.
Golf Courses and Country Clubs
Fitness and Recreational Sports Centers
All Other Amusement and Recreation Industries
An estimated 25,000 membership sports and recreation clubs were in operation in 2002, generating revenues of more than $22 billion. Employment in this sector declined by 4 percent from more than 400,000 employees in 2000 to 385,200 in 2002. Personal consumption expenditures, however, rose more than 15 percent from $75.8 billion in 2000 to $89.2 billion in 2003.
American country clubs were born in the late 1880s—a creation of the wealthy upper class as an exclusive social setting in which to enjoy various athletic and recreational endeavors. The clubs flourished until the late 1920s, when the Depression forced many of them to close. A renaissance took place in the late 1940s and 1950s, spawned by post-war affluence and the increased interest in golf (a sport that has enjoyed a tremendous amount of growth across the nation for the past several decades). As a direct result of this heightened popularity, many country clubs were built during this period. The trend of the mid-1990s continued into the 2000s, as private country clubs have become a major pastime for many Americans, with more than 12,000 such facilities in operation.
The National Golf Foundation estimated that there were 28 million golfers ages 18 and above in 2005. The rate of golfers has remained steady since 2000. There were 16,052 golf facilities in the United States as of December 2005, the majority of which were either municipal or private courses that were open to the public. The top five states with the most golf courses in 2005 were Florida, California, Texas, Michigan, and New York. Golfers spent $19.7 billion on public and private greens fees and dues in 2002 and $4.7 billion on equipment. Many private golf courses offered a variety of different memberships, with the most sought-after and expensive membership being a full-equity membership, in which members have full use of the...