Since 1915, Excelsior Springs Golf Course has been challenging orb-smashing novices and professional putters alike with its championship, par 72 golf course, having hosted current PGA regulars Tom Watson, Payne Stewart, and Tom Pernice. Tee off toward 18 pins spread over 6,603 yards of rolling hills, elevation changes, and challenging obstructions, including fully grown trees, water hazards, and a seven-foot basketball center guarding the hole and ready to block any incoming shots. Cushy golf carts whisk club-carriers from zoysia-grass fairways to well-manicured greens, allowing golfers to breeze down the 475-yard tree-lined 15th hole. After playing through, ditch the cart and hone your home-run swing with a bucket of balls at the on-site driving range.
Since opening its fairways in 1967, Liberty Hills Golf Club has cultivated a golf environment that challenges all players with a versatile landscape that earned it hosting rights to the 2005 Missouri Amateur tournament and several Midwest Section PGA events. Starting out from the stately white clubhouse that anchors the club’s 140 acres of rolling terrain, golfers embark on a 6,530-yard jaunt that culminates at the highest elevation in Clay County. The fairways coil around two large central ponds that bear heavily on shot-making decisions, forcing them to choose between attempting to play a hook shot or hook a fish for lunch.
Course at a Glance:
For 27 years and two generations, Northland Rolladium Skate Center has hosted an endless string of family fun nights, strapping guests into their classic four-wheel skates for a spin around their colorfully-lighted roller rink. They teach skate lessons on the weekends to help kids master their first set of wheels, the skates included in the cost of the class. They also throw venue-assisted birthday parties, supplying the guests with bottomless pitchers of Pepsi products and reserved table space. The special boy or girl gets space on the birthday wall of fame to leave their handprint, a mark that never goes away, unlike coloring on the walls at home or slapping oneself in the face.
Each autumn, friends and families meander through the twists and turns of the 25-acre Liberty Corn Maze, whose GPS-precision-cut design changes every year. This year’s design, which commemorates World War One and our nation's soldiers, is actually composed of four separate mazes, each dotted with nefarious twists and turns. Visitors set off down 50-inch-wide trails lined with tall, swaying stalks, armed only with a map, their wits, and a lion sidekick whose fear makes them strong. Along the way, bridges lift travelers above the stalks and give them a bird’s-eye view of their surroundings. Friendly staffers keep guests on the right trail and help locate lost friends and family members. For young ones, a separate three-foot-high soybean maze provides entertainment while keeping kids within view at all times.
While a part of the NAIA, the William Jewell Cardinals athletic teams were a force. The football team was the association’s first to reach 500 victories, and the women’s soccer team appeared in the NAIA National Soccer Championship five times between 2003 and 2010. William Jewell has since transitioned to the Division II level of the NCAA, where it competes as part of the Great Lakes Valley Conference. The move brought upon several changes, most notably a slate of new opponents and permission to open the "Division II" chapter of their playbooks. The Cardinals continue to host visiting squads at Greene Stadium for football and soccer contests and Talley Baseball Stadium for nine-inning duels.