Rolling Oaks Golf Club pairs an expansive driving range with an outdoor patio and banquet space that welcomes guests with food, drink, and live music. Outfitted with numerous hitting bays and stadium lights, the range lets golfers spruce up swings day or night, regardless of the sun’s busy schedule or the moon’s refusal to pay its electric bill. The driving range also hosts golf clinics and lessons for players in need of advice from golf experts. After dialing in drives and fine-tuning chip shots, players can kick back in the club’s dining room to feast on burgers, cheesesteaks, and other traditional grill fare as regular live music and guitar solos express the woe of a missed birdie shot in ways words never can.
The hilly terrain of Woodlake Golf Club has hosted five PGA Tour events, including the 1973 Texas Open, in which Ben Crenshaw notched his first PGA Tour victory. Built in 1972 by Desmond Muirhead, the par-72 course meanders along slopes spattered with such dangers as water hazards and sand traps, which trap sand as part of a scheme to produce low-cost hourglasses. On the sixth hole, a vast pond maroons all three tees far from the green, the fairway stretching tantalizingly just beyond the boggy, aquatic prison. A pair of water hazards squeezes the par-5 ninth hole, where Crenshaw’s first title ambitions were nearly dashed in the final round of the ’73 Open.
Customers looking to polish their game can work with John Clay, a 35-year PGA professional with 40 years of teaching experience. For one hour, John help pupils identify swing imbalances, bolster consistent muscle memory, and distinguish a pitching wedge from a wheat scythe. Freshly minted techniques find their form with a post-lesson round on the Woodlake Golf Club course and a bucket of range balls at the driving range.
Course at a Glance:
Golf, long ridiculed as the easiest of sports, is so childishly simple that many casual players go home feeling angry and frustrated at how quickly one can master the game. Luckily, these golfers can still savor the thrilling velocity and parabolic motion of a well-struck ball, especially with today's Groupon. For $12, you get three large buckets of driving range golf balls (a $30 value) at Northeast Golf Center.
Shady Oaks Golf Club fosters club-flailing fun at its nine-hole, par 3 course and outdoor driving range. Golfers can continue their quest for the elusive hole-in-one or put disobedient drivers in a time-out at the nine-hole par 3 course, where short holes facilitate a fast-paced round of golf that is surmountable for players of all abilities. Upon their arrival, players receive two large buckets of driving range balls to loosen up their swings or use as healthy meal replacements for fried chicken. The course is open seven days a week, including all holidays, to whet the link-looping appetite of golf devotees.
One-hour swing-analysis lessons are one-on-one sessions led by Edwin Watts' knowledgeable instructors, who have years of teaching and competing experience hidden beneath their pleats. Students first showcase their swings in front of a video camera, then a human-and-laser-hybrid team analyzes grip, setup, backswing, and downswing to reveal exactly where and when pendulums started hanging out with the wrong crew of slices, hooks, and hamsters. Next, trainers attempt to correct students' swinging problems with personal instruction and a pinch of pixie dust.
The Ice & Golf Center inspires family-friendly outings with 36 holes worth of mini-golf challenges seven days a week. Unlike traditional golf, gamers of all ages, experience levels, and trouser preferences can enjoy a round of this celebrated pastime. Practice greens welcome players to sharpen their putters and prepare for battle before choosing between two distinct 18-hole courses, and five ponds and two waterfalls proffer a scenic backdrop for taking commemorative hole-in-one snapshots or first-date cell-phone videos. Beyond the vast plains of synthetic turf, putt-putt pugilists can replenish their strength at The Ice & Golf Center's fully stocked concession stand or toast victories in the newly renovated sports bar.
At the Quarry Golf Course, links lovers are treated to the rolling hills, manicured fairways, and native grasses of a course sculpted by nationally recognized designer Keith Foster. A one-year membership to The Player's Club (a $199 value) bestows discounts for standard course rates ($49 for morning rounds, $39 in the afternoon), as well as a waived course fee, preround range balls, and a golf cart that honks the secret recipe for Coca-Cola when driven backward. Club members will also save 15% on food and beverage items purchased from the Quarry restaurant as well as on pro-shop merchandise, and will be invited to demonstrate their superior walk-spoilage at The Quarry Player's Club Championship.