Amid the verdant, golf-cart-traversed grounds of Indian Spring Country Club and Pennsauken Country Club, executive chef Dean Marco blends herbs with Maryland crab meat to make his broiled jumbo lump crab cakes. The crisp yet creamy morsels, which are Marco’s signature dish, are properly placed near the top of the menu at Marco’s Restaurant, above succulent meats such as filet mignon, Atlantic salmon, and whole crabs with authentic New England accents. Given both locations’ proximity to the links, each kitchen also sates golfers’ appetites with Angus burgers and sandwich baskets that come with optional sides such as lobster-and-shrimp bisque.
In golf, reliving mistakes is sometimes a good thing. It can help a player find the faults in his or her swing, and then make the necessary adjustments in order to finally crack open a golf ball and retrieve the shiny pearl inside. That's exactly what the PGA-certified instructors at Fox Meadow Golf Center accomplish through their JC Video motion-analysis software. The system captures video of players and then breaks down every element of a swing—from the initial backswing to the moment of impact.
Of course, this video system would be useless without practice areas. The driving range's five target greens lie at distances between 50 and 205 yards. Balls launch from 60 tees, including 30 heated tees that stay open year round. A sand trap lies nearby, and a synthetic putting green helps bolster short games. These facilities are the setting for Fox Meadow Golf Center's instructional programs, including junior and adult camps that focus on everything from chipping to bunker play. Alternatively, an onsite 18-hole mini-golf course allows for more casual putting.
Open year-round, the course at Juniata Golf Club sprawls over 106 naturally hilly acres and challenges players with tricky lies and imposing hazards that complicate its relatively short length. Frankford Creek winds into play on six holes of the Edmund B. Ault design, ensnaring worm burners in a reedy morass. The par-4 sixth hole exemplifies the difficulty of the course as a whole, measuring just 360 yards in length but forcing shots to climb entirely uphill from tee to shallow green like a marathon-running pack mule.
Course at a Glance:
Springfield Golf Center's 18-hole course encompasses 6 par threes, 10 par fours, and 2 par fives. Its many shorter-length holes make the course ideal for beginners or advanced golfers looking for casual rounds. For practice, players can head over to the driving range or sign up for lessons with P.G.A. professional Michael Beal. Springfield Golf Center is also home to a Mayan-themed mini golf course.
A member of the exclusive Ron Jaworski Golf Signature portfolio, Valleybrook Country Club lives up to the legendary status of its namesake with Best of South Jersey awards in 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2011, as determined by readers of the Courier-Post. The club's 18-hole course earns its accolades with tough but rewarding challenges, presenting a hybrid of flat and hilly terrain that keeps players mindful of elevation as they line up approaches or somersault down hillsides in pursuit of runaway balls. Complicating matters are tight fairways and water hazards that come into play at nine points throughout the round. While golfers deliberate over club choice, they can assuage their nerves with visions of steamed mussels, burgers, and pizzas awaiting them at Riley's Pub for post-round devouring.
Course at a Glance:
A traditional layout of kempt bent-grass fairways and greens, Wedgwood Country Club's gently rolling 18-hole course wends through a dense thicket of trees, bunkers, and ponds. Measuring 7,100 yards from the farthest tees, the par-72 course eases clubbers into the round with a relatively open front nine before testing their accuracy and squirrel diplomacy on a tight, tree-lined back nine. With four sets of tees, the course presents a par-hunting test to all players, from beginners to those who can wallop a drive more than 300 yards.
Course at a Glance:
PGA-certified instructor Michael Lanzetta imparts golf wisdom from the expansive practice facilities at Mansfield Golf and Learning Center, which he has owned and operated since 1997. The passionate pedagogue sleeps on a bed of neatly mown bentgrass to maintain the pin-hunting skills that led him to victory in more than 100 competitive tournaments, including the New Jersey Head Professional Championship. A simple teaching philosophy of improving clients’ ball-striking fundamentals is the driving force of every lesson, during which pupils crush orbs from a 36-stall, 14-acre driving range, which features covered, enclosed stalls to offset meteorological uncertainties. Lessons may also include the use of video analysis, which plays back shots in slow motion and introduces players to a digital doppelgänger soon to be their inferior. Mansfield Golf also showcases a pro shop that carries golf equipment from top brands and offers club fitting, repair, and regripping services.