Golf Bucks County

By Bob Oliver

Middletown Country Club

Middletown is a compact 80 acres of challenging golf, with rolling hills and large specimen trees that have watched many golfers travel its fairways over time. It has retained its old time feel with tees and greens in close proximity, allowing golfers to walk the course if they choose.

The Traveling Golfer

With host Tony Leodora will travel both near and far to bring viewers a look at some of the most spectacular golf destinations in the world!

Golf Clubs

More golf, more often, more places

Written by Bob Oliver on .

Lists.  We love our lists. 

Bucket lists on everything from travel destinations to restaurants. 

Golfers lists include playing in Scotland and/or Ireland, sampling Pebble Beach or somehow getting an invitation to Pine Valley. 

For me it has long been playing a new course.  To date I've sampled more than 925 courses, and while COVID has put a crimp on adding to the list I've tried. Drivable jaunts to play a new course has occupied recent time, and I've been able to add a few new challenges this year. 

Thinking ahead, there are great opportunities. Along the way it would be great to play some top-ranked courses.  There was a time when I'd played 25 of the top 100 modern courses in the USA, as determined by Golfweek. Looking at the recently released listings for 2020, the list has changed dramatically. 

I've only sampled 9 of the top 100, 20 of the top 200.  That's depressing!

Of course to many people - who haven't played a single one of the list - probably to big deal. But it is for this corner. While in my drive to 1,000 courses played I've sampled some real, shall we say, less than stellar courses, I've balanced those with scenic, challenging and immaculately manicured layouts that are memorable gems. 

One particular jewel, the Tom Doak designed Stonewall (Old Course) layout in Bulltown, Pa., is a classic. Carved on rolling farmland, it's a walking course - no motorized carts - and it takes one back in time. Rolling fairways, dastardly greens that sometimes mystify even the seasoned caddies that guide one, it's not only beautiful but a true experience. 

And it's back on the top-100 list! 

There are some courses one never want to play again after an initial visit. Others, like Merion, Oakmont, Stonewall and Pine Valley, never get old. Each has it's one special way, and one wants to play again and again.

For now, my goal is to intersperse those great tests with new challenges of varying degrees. Having lost 30 yards somewhere along the line, even the white tees can be hellacious. But the mind knows that playing golf, anywhere, is mind easing. 

Guess the glass is half empty or half full, but there is room for more golf. D(V*D be damned. 

 

Shore Club a south Jersey gem

Written by Bob Oliver on .

 

CAPE MAY COURTHOUSE, NJ ---

In just a bit over a year the rebranding from the former Wildwood Country Club into the Shore Club has been a near complete success. 

Hardly a month goes past without visitors noticing improvements to the clubhouse and other facilities as well as the wind swept 1921 Wayne Stiles design. And why "near" complete? Well, the enhancements are still occuring. 

"We are very happy with the upgrades around the entire facility, from the golf course to our structures," explained Fred Reidel, the Director of Golf who has worked at the Cape May Courthouse club for 17 years. "We have our plans and we are following them and you can see many of the improvements already with more happening."

On our recent visit, roof work was being completed, while the club's pub was drawing nice reviews for food, drink and ambience. Further enhancements are being completed. Gazing toward the golf course, there was hustle and bustle as renovations are ongoing.

"We are in the process of reworking sand bunkers on holes one, six and nine," explained Reidel. "We've complete several bunkers, and will have a handful more to do before summer as we present players with challenges."

There has been small harvesting of overgrown bush and trees to facilitate movement of air to help with turf growth, something that naturally occurs over time. It also helps with pace of play and overall beauty and challenge.

And what a challenging course The Shore Club provides. A bayside layout, the course can be blanketed by the breezes which in turn makes ball flight and club selection critical. 

The Shore Club continues to host numerous weddings and functions which go on hand in hand with stellar golf.

When making plans for shore golf, The Shore Club is a must visit attraction. 

CHIP SHOTS - For information on all aspects of The Shore Club contact 609-465-7824.

Ban the belly, long putter?

Written by Bob Oliver on .

This is one of those stories that has been told dozens of time and simply gets better with age.

 

Playing in a tournament along the Grand Strand years more than 20 years ago my foursome after a long night of libations trudged its way onto the golf course.

 

Somehow, nobody remembers the number of shots, each of us found our way onto the first green.

 

Tour Edge offers technology, playability

Written by Bob Oliver on .

In the world of golf equipment, it's all about getting "the buzz".

 

Manufacturers spend millions of dollars to get that buzz, paying large endorsement contracts to PGA Tour professionals to play their equipment, wear their logos and make special appearances pushing product.

 

Endorsements help sales, and with more sales come more endorsements.