A new general manager, Jeffrey Champion, was recently hired at the Weston Field Club and he is ushering in some changes and new programs.
Mr. Champion, a Weston resident, was hired last April and started full-time in June. He came to the club from the Torrington Country Club in Litchfield County, where he worked as a general manager and chief operating officer.
Mr. Champion said his success is due in part to the education he received at Sacred Heart University, where his major was personal management and accounting. He also earned an associate’s degree at the Culinary Institute of America and was a chef for 12 years. During that time he owned a number of restaurants.
“The management side and the business side, together with the culinary degree, kind of shaped me into this position of running a club,” said Mr. Champion. “A combination of school and experience is what got me to where I am today.”
For the past few years, said Mr. Champion, the Weston Field Club, on Ladder Hill Road South, has undergone a variety of renovation projects to accommodate its members.
Current projects include plastering the pool, adding new lighting to the paddle tennis courts and taking on a three-year project that will involve the reconstruction of seven clay tennis courts.
“We’re constantly reinventing ourselves,” said Mr. Champion, “because as a private club, you’re constantly catering to the same audience all the time, so we’re making changes to our camp program and gearing it a little bit more towards today’s kids.”
The club will also be obtaining its waterfront certification in order to incorporate boating and the beach into its camp program.
The club is open to residents from all towns and offers activities such as basketball, year-round dining and social events, a year-round certified kid’s camp, trap shooting, and tennis and paddle tennis (similar to a combination of tennis and racquetball). Mr. Champion said the club’s paddle tennis pro is ranked No. 1 in the country.
There is also swimming in both a pond and pool, diving, volleyball, badminton, and a kid’s game room.
“It’s a very family-friendly, come-as-you-are type of place,” Mr. Champion said. “We’re very relaxed. We don’t have as many protocols, dress codes, things like that, as most country clubs.”
Mr. Champion said the club has more than 180 family memberships, 70 winter paddle memberships and 30 winter trap memberships.
“We are running a very generous promotion right now of $3,000 off the initiation fee for the first 30 applicants,” said Mr. Champion. “Usually it is $9,000.”
Mr. Champion said the club goes out of its way to provide its members with a safe environment. During the summer months, there are nine lifeguards and a pool director and last year, there were 40 camp counselors during the seven-week camp program.
“We’re very focused on safety. That’s what makes it such a relaxed, fun environment,” said Mr. Champion.
To join the field club, applicants must submit a registration form along with with three letters of recommendation from two members of the club. Once they have done so, they are invited for a “sociable” interview with the membership committee.
“Part of the application process,” said Mr. Champion, “is helping the applicant identify members they know or introducing them to members who can ultimately serve as their sponsor.”
For more information about the club, visit westonfieldclub.com or call 203-227-8487.