Just in time for a new summer of golf, the Clear Cut Range, LLC, will be opening in Merrill. 
“We’ll be opening on Memorial Day,” owner Pete Borchardt said. “On the sixth of September (2013), I seeded it and within two weeks the grass was growing and greening up already. We have some rocks to pick and some netting to put up, but other than that, we’re almost ready.
“It’s amazing how much work is involved.”
The range runs 300 yards to the north of Pine Ave., and then makes a dogleg left to Hwy. K. 
“We will have 25-foot high netting at the end, as soon as it dries up enough to install it,” Pete said. “Until then we may lose a few balls.
“Eventually I’ll put another building up and extend the driveway all the way to Hwy. K, so you’ll be able to enter right off the highway.”
Now it requires a jog of about a block down Pine Ave., located by the J & B Enterprises building, the old Reinke Motors building. 
Location is a key component to the range, in Borchardt’s mind. 
“It’s one mile from the course,” Pete said. “I came up with this one day while talking to a friend. We both thought it would be an excellent idea if I could come up with land close to Merrill. 
“I talked to Mike Malinowski at the golf course and he said he wasn’t going to be building one because he didn’t have enough space. He and (club pro) Mike Potter are very happy about this. We’ll have a good working relationship.”
The range will be open from 7:00 a.m. to dusk, daily, and be serviced by an automated  golf-ball dispenser that will accept both cash and credit cards. Borchardt is offering $5 and $10 buckets, with 35 balls in the smaller and 100 in the larger. 
Then, of course, there’s the critical facilities.
“We do plan on having a porta-potty here,” Borchardt said.