You can't play Jack Nicklaus' private Muirfield Village in Columbus, but you can at excellent Longaberger Golf Club
Home to the Golden Bear himself, of course Columbus, Ohio is going to serve up some of America’s best golf courses.
Most of them, however, are private, including prestigious Muirfield Village Golf Club. I’m told it’s a great course, perhaps the Augusta National of the Midwest, but good luck scoring a tee time. Other nationally-recognized area privates include the Alister Mackenzie Scarlet Course at Ohio State University and Scioto Golf Club.
At this golf blog, however, we could care less about those. We’re interested in the ones that welcome anyone willing to plunk down a green fee, and just outside of Columbus is one excellent public option: Longaberger Golf Club.
I visited the course last fall, and must say it was one of the best I played in the U.S. all year. It’s got a wealth of acreage to work with, which features a mix of open, woodland and wetland holes. There’s no real estate out here, just wide fairways, large ponds and a few pretty-but-penal tree-lined holes as well. I can’t think of a better Arthur Hills course I’ve ever played off the top of my head. I even like the design as a whole here a little better than the highly-acclaimed and gorgeous Bay Harbor in northern Michigan.
Owned by the Longaberger company, they’ve really made the course just down the road from HQ their baby, and it’s in kept tour-ready condition with slick greens and beautiful fairways and bunkers. I played it on a lovely morning and caught a few great photos. Click here for the gallery, and click here for the course review.
And if you’re looking for even more area golf options, click here for the Columbus feature.
Longaberger reminds me a bit of a casino golf course in a way, because it’s not there to solely make money, but to mostly serve as an amenity to employees and clients of the company (like casino courses are there to reel in the whales). As a result, you get exceptional conditions, facilities and service for the dough.
I did a search at their website to see if they have tee times available this week during Jack’s tournament, and it looks like they have a few spots each morning and are a little more wide open during the afternoons. The club is located about 40 miles east of Columbus’ city center, but is worth the drive, especially if you take advantage of their $150 day special for the 2009 season ($99 for 18 holes).
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