Combine SXSW, tournament golf at Barton Creek in the Golf Channel Am Tour in Austin
Austin’s South by Southwest festival and golf go together more than you might think.
During Austin’s major spring festival that draws hundreds of bands, indie film makers, web gurus and thousands of fans, the city practically shuts down (don’t even bother trying to reserve a cab over the phone at night). Chances are, you’ll reach your limit of dark, loud bars by the end of the week and you’ll be craving quiet and fresh air - not to mention a little exercise to work off all those Lonestar tall boys.
That’s where golf comes in, and March is an ideal time to experience the Texas Hill Country courses with temps usually in the 70s. There are scores of great courses, including the brand new TPC San Antonio and JW Marriott Resort just an hour south of Austin, or the Horseshoe Bay Resort on Lake LBJ in the Hill Country.
But much closer to downtown Austin is Barton Creek Golf Resort, home to three golf courses (and a fourth further out) within a couple miles of downtown Austin.
Here’s my plan as an Austinite during SXSW weekend March 18-21: numerous shows and indie movies at night, then work off my hangover and the ringing in my ear with some competitive golf during the day at Barton Creek via the Golf Channel World Am Tour March 20-21. The tour hosts one of its major, two-day events that very weekend on the Crenshaw Cliffside course (click here for my course review of the Cliffside). The goal of the Am Tour is to offer a tour-quality experience for all handicap levels, from hosting the event on a top-ranked course in top condition, to digital scoreboards and of course, holing out EVERYTHING.
It’s an event worth traveling for when you consider the production of tournament, the course you’re playing and all the action going on in Austin that weekend, from music to the great restaurants all over the city.
Spots are still available for the Austin major as well as many others throughout the season. To register or get more info, check out GolfChannel.com/AmTour. This event in particular is a two-day, “major” event, but the San Antonio-Austin area hosts numerous Am Tour events throughout the year. Here’s the full San Antonio-Austin Am Tour schedule, with about two dozen events throughout this year.
Or, if you’re looking for cheap, casual golf in Austin during the week, check out one of Austin’s popular municipal courses like Roy Kizer & Jimmy Clay south of town. I personally like Jimmy Clay a lot, and you can usually get on under $20 walking.
Stay tuned for more on golf in Austin and the Golf Channel World Am Tour. If you’re planning on coming to Austin for SXSW, better get moving on finding a hotel room. And yes, my couch is already taken.
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