Golf in Laurel

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Long the home of the Mississippi Choctaw Indians, Dancing Rabbit Golf Club derives its name from the waterway that snakes across its grounds, which the Choctaw referred to as "the creek where rabbits dance." The club's name is not the only thing that hearkens back to a bygone era: towering, mature pines and hardwoods cast their shadows across the 700-acre plot, which hosts two handsome, challenging 18-hole layouts designed by course architect Tom Fazio and former PGA star Jerry Pate. Opened in 1997, the Azaleas course connects Bermuda fairways and bentgrass greens in a 7,128-yard layout that takes full advantage of the surrounding water. The zoysia fairways and Bermuda greens of the Oaks course, meanwhile, offer a slightly different feel, though the two courses are similar in length, difficulty, and topography.

Regardless of which course they play, golfers will have to keep their wits about them until the very last shot, as both feature 18th greens guarded by water hazards. Before hitting the course, guests can warm up at a practice facility that includes a driving range with seven target greens and three contoured putting greens, as well as a bunker where they can practice sand shots or dig for ancient divot tools.

Azaleas Course at a Glance:

  • 18-hole, par 72 course
  • Length of 7,128 yards from the tips
  • Course rating of 74.4 from the tips
  • Slope rating of 135 from the tips
  • Five tee options

Oaks Course at a Glance:

  • 18-hole, par 72 course
  • Length of 7,076 yards from the tips
  • Course rating of 74.6 from the tips
  • Slope rating of 139 from the tips
  • Five tee options

13541 Highway 16 W
Philadelphia,
MS
US

CityVoters named The Refuge the area’s third-best golf course in 2009. Golf Link reviewers give the course a 4.5-star average:

2100 Refuge Blvd
Flowood,
MS
US

Designed by Randy Watkins in 1999, the course at the semi-private Patrick Farms Golf Club covers 200 landscaped acres replete with thick clusters of trees. To reach their hole goals, golfers must slap spheroids down the middle of meticulously-kempt Tifway 419 bermuda grass fairways before smuggling them past fringe and onto Tifdwarf grass greens. The course is over-seeded in the winter to extend the golf season to 12 months a year, leaving no time for grass to make extra money mowing lawns. The par 72 course opens and closes with a long par 5, forcing players to call upon their long games from the get-go.

300 Clubhouse Dr
Jackson,
MS
US

Stretching 6,500 yards from the back tees, Brookwood Byram Country Club's recently renovated 18-hole, par 72 course has enticed wedge wielders for more than 50 years. Test handicaps of all levels on Brookwood's links, which are ripe with obstacles including lightly pitched terrain, water hazards, and endless blades of grass. With today's deal, you and up to four friends can cruise the tree-lined fairways in an included cart, recovering balls after explosive bunker shots and overzealous drives.

5001 Forest Hill Rd
Byram,
MS
US

In View Golf renders rainchecks obsolete by virtually teleporting patrons to more than 30 famed golf courses—including Pebble Beach and Spyglass Hill—via 12'x9' high-def projection screens. As golfers take to the cyberlinks, video analysis software, previously available only to touring PGA and LPGA pros, records every swing, capturing such statistics as shot distance, club-head speed, and the golf ball's potential earning value. During a 45-minute private lesson, In View's professional instructors analyze the videos to make individualized adjustments to patrons' natural golf swings. Or forgo in-person tips on chips and grips, and instead opt for a round of 18 holes in the golf simulator with a fellow iron-wielder, using the instant video feedback to see and measure the results of tweaks to techniques and tempers.

7048 Old Canton Rd
Ridgeland,
MS
US

Whisper Lake Country Club's verdant course encompasses 4,645 yards of kempt bermuda-grass fairways into a compact-but-challenging par 64 course. Golfers can prepare for rounds with swing-loosening stints at the driving range. There, wise players will focus on mid-length shots and keep drivers securely covered so they don't recognize rounds of golf are being played without them. Various short, drivable par 4s line the course, eschewing the longball in favor of pinpoint long irons or fairway woods, encouraging duffers to direct orbs to hospitable landing areas and set up favorable angles to approach fast, tifdwarf greens. Four sets of tees make the course surmountable for golfers of all abilities, and its compressed yardage—the 18-hole course only features two, relatively short par 5s compared to nine par 3s—allows duffers to complete rounds in about three hours or less, freeing up valuable time to tend to workday obligations or mow basement shag carpets into in-home putting greens. Cart rental is included in all options.

414 Annandale Pkwy
Madison,
MS
US