Sculpted into the Ohio countryside in 1928, Maplecrest Golf Club’s course spans 6,312 yards of immaculate fairways that arch over gentle hilltops for a par 71 round. The club’s intrepid greenskeepers work hard to keep the course in pristine condition, including maintaining an onsite greenhouse where they grow all the course’s plants, trees, flowers, and sand-trap rakes before incorporating them into the layout. Throughout the course, fairways tunnel through imposing tree lines, so players should consider making a preround stop at the club’s driving range or bribing the oldest oak in their neighborhood for favorable treatment from its fellow timbers.
The 9-hole, par-three course at Mulligan Springs, situated in Portage County, challenges, but also subdues, golfers with reflective ponds and mini waterfalls that ripple across rocky structures. Here, the casual, uncrowded atmosphere is especially inviting to novice golfers, who can avoid the air of intimidation and ball washers filled with molasses that come with playing on more difficult courses. As abundant as they are out on the links, Mulligan Springs' modest vibes stretch to its clubhouse area, which features an outdoor patio for relaxing after rounds.
A towering dome dedicated to golf practice looms over The Golf Dome’s multifaceted grounds, serving as the gravitational center of a facility dedicated to recreational golf and baseball practice. Inside the vaulted white roof, golfers stroke drives from one of 34 hitting bays at the indoor, two-tiered driving range, where distance-reading software flashes instant readouts of shot trajectory and the pain inflicted on each practice ball. The dome further facilitates climate-controlled clubbing with a putting and chipping area and Full Swing golf simulators, which allow golfers to play digital recreations of more than 30 of the world’s top courses.
Outside, a scenic, 20-foot waterfall draws players to the 18-hole miniature golf course, where contoured greens run between rocky outcrops, interrupted by water that comes into play on 14 holes. The din of sharply struck line drives echoes throughout the grounds, sonic evidence of the six adjacent batting cages, where players swing at high-arching softballs, baseballs hurled at up to 75 miles per hour, and tiny meteors raining from the sky.
There are parkland golf courses, and then there are golf courses set within the US National Parks System. The 18-hole layout at Astorhurst Country Club abuts Tinkers Creek in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, where it immerses golfers in picturesque surroundings while challenging them to hit their way over elevation changes, think through strategic quandaries, and ignore cloud formations just begging to be interpreted. At 6,138 yards, the course doesn't overwhelm anyone with extreme length, relying instead upon challenges to shot-shaping, control, and discipline that keep the course accessible to every level of golfer.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 31 course * Total length of 6,138 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 70.3 from the back tees * Course slope of 120 from the back tees * Three sets of tees per hole * View the scorecard
Golf: Inside & Out’s resident golf guru David Geier offers a comprehensive approach to golf training, helping golfers on their path to mastering the technical, tactical, physical, and mental elements of the game. As players pulverize golf balls at the studio’s indoor hitting bays, the watchful instructor observes and analyzes each swing with video technology. Golf students benefit from watching a video of their swings in slow motion, helping them understand nuggets of corrective advice and sympathize with brutally compressed golf balls. Geier also teaches principles of course management, physical training, and the mental and emotional training necessary to execute golf shots on a subconscious level, a process which can incorporate hypnotherapy.
Golf: Inside & Out also helps aspiring Arnold Palmers refine their skills with advanced club-fitting services. The shop's high-tech module evaluates customers' putts and swings, then tailors a custom blueprint that helps determine correct shaft flex, launch angle, and grip size. The device can also clarify the most compatible ball for a particular club.
Established in 1963, Valleaire Golf Club is carved into the wooded landscape of Hinckley, Ohio. The golf club stays open year-round, even during the winter, so long as the course hasn't been buried by snow or taken over by vacationing polar bears. During rounds, players navigate the 18-hole, par 72 layout while overcoming various obstacles?especially water, which comes into play on nearly half the holes. After they've successfully passed all the course's challenges, golfers can celebrate their accomplishments by visiting the clubhouse or stocking up on gear in the pro shop.
Course at a Glance * 18-hole, par 72 course * Distance of 6,528 yards from the back tees * Four tees per hole * Course rating of 70.6 * Course slope of 121 * Click here to view the scorecard.