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|Run by Shelby County just outside of Memphis, Orgill Park has been a local favorite since 1972. (Mike Bailey/TravelGolf)|
MILLINGTON, Tenn. -- There haven't been any major renovations at Orgill Park Golf Course near Memphis. The greens haven't been rebuilt, the holes haven't been moved around and the bunkers don't have new sand.
The latter is, in fact, impossible, since there are no bunkers on the course.
The biggest change in recent years was that the greens got Champion Bermuda greens to replace the old 328 Bermuda. Other than that, the course has simply grown up since it opened in 1972.
"There's not a whole lot of water (in play), and it's not 8 million miles long," said Head Professional Michael Laird, who has been at Orgill Park since 2005. "We like to call it user friendly."
When the golf course opened it was known as Casper. It later took on the name of the entire park, which was named after a former Shelby County mayor. A few things have been moved around on the county-run course over the years, but the biggest change is that the pine trees -- of which there are thousands -- have grown up.
From the back tees, the golf course plays 6,486 yards. It's just 4,824 yards from the forward tees. In either case, the trees are probably the biggest obstacles.
There is a back tee on the par-5 18th that makes the finishing hole more than 500 yards, but other than that, the par 5s are all less than 500 yards, certainly birdie and eagle opportunities for good players.
More importantly, however, they play fair for the course's senior players, of which there are many, Laird said, adding bogey is about the worst score they'll probably make on the hole.
The signature parts of the golf course, however, are around the lakes. It really comes into play on the fourth, where fishermen are common on the opposite bank. At 418 yards, the no. 3-handicap hole brings the water into play on the approach, but weaker player can play around the water in two shots if need be.
Lake views are also prominent on the start of Orgill Park's back nine. The par-3 11th, in particular, features a semi-island green.
Despite the water, the 11th is one of the easier par 3s on the course. The third hole is 220 yards from the back tee, and the eighth is 194 yards for the better players.
With green fees in the $30-$35 range, Orgill Park Golf Course is very affordable and easy to get around. If you're looking for an enjoyable round of golf with above-average conditions, Orgill Park is a good choice. Add to that pretty smooth Champion Bermuda greens, and you've got a solid golf experience.
For better players, it's probably not a course they would want to play every day because of the lack of bunkers, but it's still challenging nonetheless. Four sets of tees make it "user friendly" for all levels.
The clubhouse has a municipal feel but is very serviceable. Lockers are available, and there's a good selection of food in the snack area, and equipment and apparel in the golf shop. The course also provides a short-game area (sans a practice bunker, of course) and driving range. Lessons are available.
August 14, 2013
Mike Bailey is a senior staff writer based in the Houston area. Focusing primarily on golf in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America, he contributes course reviews, travel stories and features as well as the occasional equipment review. An award-winning writer and past president of Texas Golf Writers Association, he has more than 20 years in the golf industry. Before accepting his current position in 2008, he was on staff at PGA Magazine, The Golfweek Group and AvidGolfer Magazine. Follow Mike on Twitter at @Accidentlgolfer.
Any opinions expressed above are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of the management.
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