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This Thanksgiving, head for the Waccamaw Golf Trail in Myrtle Beach

River Club golf course - Pawleys Island
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River Club is one of three courses on the Waccamaw Golf Trail that you can play for special rates this Thanksgiving. (Brandon Tucker/WorldGolf.com)

While football has always been the sport most associated with Thanksgiving, Turkey Day is also a good excuse play some golf before sitting down to that big meal.

If you're heading to Myrtle Beach for a long holiday golf weekend, you might want to consider hitting the Waccamaw Golf Trail (www.waccamawgolftrail.com) on nearby Pawleys Island.

The Trail is a consortium of 12 championship golf courses, including some of America's most awarded tracks.

Just in time for Thanksgiving, three of the courses on the Trail - Litchfield Country Club, the River Club and Willbrook Plantation - are offering special holiday rates from $45 to $62 per round through Nov. 25. A two-round special begins at just $100.

Litchfield Country Club

Opened for play in 1966, Litchfield Country Club is a William Byrd-designed golf course that is one of the original eight tracks built in Myrtle beach. Though many golf courses might have tweaked their design over that period of time, the course has maintained its original features, including player-friendly greenside pathways for bump-and-run approach shots.

Litchfield is one of Myrtle Beach's charming little classics. Fairways are tight and often canopied with an assortment of matured oaks and pines, winding through a sleepy residential development. Bigger hitters may desire to hit driver a little more than is allowed. Many of the holes have doglegs or are tight enough with ponds lingering that driver is often the wrong move off the tee.

"Few of the Grand Strand's 100-plus golf courses have the ability to have that classic, stuck-in-time southern feeling - when cell phones, golf carts and metallic spikes were novelties, not the norm on the golf course," WorldGolf.com's Brandon Tucker wrote in a review of Litchfield Country Club.

Litchfield has consistently been cited as one of the top attractions in Myrtle Beach. Ranked by Conde Nast as one of the "world's 50 best" and cited for having one of the "100 greatest holes along the Grand Strand" by The Sun News, Litchfield is among the elite at Myrtle Beach.

The River Club

The semi-private River Club has proven to be one of the most challenging courses in the Myrtle Beach area. This Tom Jackson signature course is one of the premier "plantation" courses and a favorite among returning golfers.

True to its name, River Club features water on 15 of 18 holes and more than 100 sand traps and bunkers. River Club is a big hitter's dream. Let it rip on most holes here: Fairways are plenty roomy, and at a cozy 6,677 yards from the championship tees, River Club will leave you shooting plenty of wedges and short irons to the green. But beware: those approaches need to be true.

"Don't get too cocky as you flex your muscles: Approach shots, no matter the distance, demand respect as many of the golf courses' greens are well guarded," Tucker wrote in another review.

The dramatic par-5, 18th is unquestionably one of the finest finishing holes on the Grand Strand, offering risk and reward to those who can carry the water twice for a possible chance at eagle.

Willbrook Plantation

Willbrook Plantation Golf Club has earned a reputation as one of the Myrtle Beach area's most "woman-friendly" golf courses, ranking 25th in Golf for Women magazine's most recent U.S. top 50.

Built in 1988 from a Dan Maples design, Willbrook has five sets of tees, playing 7,155 yards from the championship tees and 4,956 from the front. There are several short par 3s and numerous holes with open greens.

Willbrook's toughest shot is the drive at No. 1, so you'll want to show up primed, whether that means an extra cup of coffee or rocking out to Ozzy in the car on the ride over.

Located off Highway 17 on Pawleys Island south of Myrtle Beach, this golf course is a near-perfect blend of challenge and playability for mid-handicappers. Few holes are knee-knockers (No. 1 is the exception), but you won't find any gimmes either, even on the shorter par-4s.

Though its female-friendly rep precedes it, Willbrook Plantation is a fantastic play for both golfers of both genders and all skill levels.

Thanksgiving at Webster's

As part of this Waccamaw Golf Trail Thanksgiving offer, you can head to Webster's LowCountry Grill for its famous Thanksgiving Buffet on Thursday from noon to 3:00 p.m., for just $21.95 per person.

Add an early morning round of golf on the Trail that day for just $22 to $39 extra and work up an appetite.

 
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