Though the layout is welcoming to all golfers—from weekend warriors to players with scratch handicaps—danger is never far at Rattle Run Golf Course. Pine forests are an ever-present threat, lurking just outside the primary cut of rough, beyond most of the greens, and in flashbacks triggered by pine-scented air fresheners. Meanwhile, 78 bunkers and several water hazards enter the picture on 15 of the 18 holes, ensnaring many golfers who play more aggressively than skill and conditions permit. On the other hand, those golfers who can keep their golf balls on the short grass likely find these rugged natural features to be picturesque, and choose to admire their beauty over drinks on the clubhouse's wrap-around balcony.
C.J. Barrymore's encompasses 25 acres brimming with energetic laser tag, a vast arcade, and various other attractions for the young, young-at-heart, and young-at-spleen. With four laser-tag tickets, tyke clans ages 7 and up can simulate battle tactics through fog and pylons in 15-minute team-based matches that, much like court hearings, come enhanced by a roaring sound system and spectacular light shows (a $24 value). Meanwhile, joystick junkies can feed their 132 tokens to myriad arcade games in the neon-lit game room, including old-school favorites such as Ms. Pac-Man and the hands-on sportitude of basketball and air hockey (a $25 value). After all tokens have been spent, gamers can redeem their earnings at the prize counter, choosing from hundreds of rewards to take home, and become the envy of all the neighborhood playground pals and reclusive Peter Pans.
Staffed by experienced coaches and computers who’ve sworn allegiance to the three laws of golfing robotics, GolfTEC’s motion sensors and high-speed cameras monitor swings and break down each individual’s form on a high-definition video display to get results. Sensors chirp with approval whenever they detect the perfect stroke or an especially witty golfing joke. GolfTEC’s certified personal coaches will point out flaws and strengths while providing golfers with tips on how to permanently improve their game from tee to green.
Vargo Golf Company’s stable of golfing properties allows club-wielders of all skills to test the tees on diverse courses while perfecting their game. The Myth Golf Club furnishes 18 holes on a championship course with spacious greens surrounded by lush woods with playful creatures that occasionally turn out to practice their polite golf clap. Myth’s younger sibling, The Little Myth Par 3 is a nine-hole affair perfect for experienced clubsmiths looking to work on their short game or short clubsmiths looking to first develop one. The hilly obstacles and generous fairways of the 18-hole Rouge Park Golf Course, founded in 1923, boasts one of the area’s most challenging holes (the famed hole 11). Groupon holders can also dream up creative mulligan excuses at the 18-hole Bruce Hills Golf Club, the 9-hole executive Hampton Golf Club, the 18-hole Rackham Golf Course, the 18-hole Chandler Park Golf Course, and the-18 hole Palmer Park Golf Course.
PGA pros Alex Macko and Alex "Breezy" Koskos propagate sound pin-hunting form from their post at Jawor's Golf Center, which fosters year-round practice with indoor and outdoor training areas. The duo can demystify the subtle mechanics of the golf swing at the center's 44-tee driving range, which features 14 covered, heated stalls that enable practice sessions during inclement weather. With clubs and apparel from brands such as Callaway, TaylorMade, and Titleist, the full-service pro shop offers equipment upgrades as well as repair services for club shafts snapped by players who mistakenly teed up a bocce ball. Two outdoor, 18-hole mini-golf courses buttress the facility, inviting players to work on their putting form as life-size cartoon characters break the tension after a missed gimme or a dispute about whether or not an abandoned shoe is an acceptable ball marker.
Working at the 1996 Summer Olympics and the 1994 World Cup are a few of the sporting events on camp director Shelly Watkins's resumé, which she draws on to run a summer camp for kids of all ages. A mother herself, she believes in giving each child individual attention, recognition, and respect, rewarding campers with high-fives and compliments for jobs well done. Together with assistant camp director Cortney Spiegel, she runs fun-packed day camps focused on arts, sports, field trips, and specialty programs. Professional counselors work with pintsize Pacinos in the Lights, Camera, Action class to make short films; kick off Nerf-themed sports events in the Nerf Extravaganza class; or venture out to bowling, movies, rollerblading, and laser tag during the Mega Adventure Field Trip. Shelly and her friendly crew also lead precamp and aftercamp activities for early-morning and evening supervision, and junior camp for campers aged 4¬–7 or 10-year-olds having their pre-preteen life crisis.