Lake Jovita Golf & Country Club’s talented designers, which include champion golfer Tom Lehman, pepper challenging and exciting pins across nearly 500 acres and two courses of undulating, verdant terrain. A hilly layout, including a 94-foot 11th-hole drop on the south course, outlines 36 holes of scenic golf-cart drives and a distinct advantage for experienced hill-climbers named Jack and Jill. Before hitting the links, golfers can hone swings with unlimited range balls to fleck across a 15-acre practice facility, chipping area, and putting green. A postmatch hot-dog-and-soda lunch nourishes club swingers and engenders the confidence to ask game-winning balls to sign players’ yardage books.
The course at Plantation Palms Golf Club slithers among numerous water hazards and over an incessant barrage of elevation changes, keeping golfers on their toes. David Harman orchestrated the links-style layout to tangle with the natural lay of the land and added his own flourishes in the form of large, white sand bunkers and gently billowing greens.
Players make swift acquaintance with local difficulties on a par 5 first hole that stretches 561 yards from the back tees. Elsewhere on the front nine, two par 3s measure 198 yards and 221 yards, calling on golfers to exhibit distance and accuracy or the ability to hypnotize opponents into believing they just saw a hole in one. Plantation Palms' on-site restaurant, the Oasis Bar & Grill, is open to the public and has a menu that features items such as a grilled mango fish sandwich and the Plantation Palms club sandwich.
Course at a Glance:
18-hole, par 72 course
Total length of 6,824 yards from the back tees
Course rating of 73.4 from the back tees
Course slope of 139 from the back tees
Four sets of tees per hole
Piercing drives resonate across the verdant grounds of Zephyrhills Under Par, providing sonic evidence of golf balls advancing through the 18-hole, 5,054-yard course. The par 68—sculpted in 1978—presents a relatively open layout, with extensive landing zones that encourage golfers to either test the limits of their driver or charter a last-minute plane for their swing coach.
Course at a Glance:
The Lutz Executive Golf Center helps sharpen short games with a challenging par 3 course alongside six practice areas comprising two ranges, greens, bunkers, and a chipping area. Before taking the course, golfers can warm up irons on the lower range or stroll up to the larger, upper practice range to unsheathe woods and target the 275-yard mark as caddies vigilantly measure each shot and avoid becoming target practice. Should golfers prefer to take practice after dark, the upper range is outfitted with in-ground lighting that stands in for the sun by illuminating the grass and giving children something to not stare at.
At Hurricane Sammy Boxing Gym, 2016 Olympic hopeful Sammy Valentin teaches the sweet science to boys and girls ages 9 to 16. Although he's only 18 years old, he's already earned the nickname "Hurricane" for the speed, agility, and power he developed over a long-term training regimen that began at the age of 5. As a teacher and ambassador of boxing, he encourages youngsters to follow a similar path to supreme fitness and self-confidence. With hard work and proper training techniques, students improve their own agility, reaction times, and hand-eye coordination, which are all necessary for boxing at a high level or fending off an uncle's noogies.
Simply knowing how to land a kick or a punch is one thing. Having the discipline to use those skills effectively in a real-life scenario is another thing altogether. The instructors at 1 ATA Martial Arts draw on years of training to teach children, teens, and adults the complete meaning of martial arts such as tae kwon do and kickboxing. As one might expect, the classes emphasize physical training in a safe environment, but they leave room to focus on mental growth as well.