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.

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LPGA future stars play in Valley Forge Invitational

Written by Bob Oliver on .

What do Lorena Ochoa and Inbee Park have in common?

A whole lot.

Each earned Rolex Player of the Year honors on the LPGA Tour. Each captured major championships. Each were World Number Ones for a time. 

But more than that. Each earned their professional spurs on the Symetra Tour, the number one developmental tour for the LPGA.

Ochoa was a three-time winner on the 2002 Symetra Tour, while Park posted 11 top-10 finishes on the 2006 Symetra Tour. Each used that experience to vault them into LPGA Tour stardom.

Delaware Valley golf fans will get a great view of tomorrow's LPGA stars when the inaugural Valley Forge Invitational is played at Raven Claw Golf Club May 24-26 at the Pottstown club. The event will benefit local charities. 

"This is a great event for the area and an opportunity for golf fans to see tomorrow's LPGA stars," explained Edward Harris, the Chief Marketing Officer for Valley Forge Tourism. "It is estimated the event will generate about a million dollars of economic development for the Philadelphia area."

"This is a great addition to the Symetra Tour calendar, and I'm very happy it will be held in my backyard," said Emily Gimpel, a Symetra Tour player who grew up playing Whitemarsh Valley among other area layouts. "I'm looking forward to seeing a lot of friends here at Raven's Claw."

"The Symetra Tour prepares players for the LPGA Tour, and its graduates make up a who's who list," added Mike Nichols, the Chief Business Officer of the Symetra Tour. 

The public layout has gained numerous accolades over the years. The Ed Shearan design promises to bedazzle competitors.

"We designed the course on a great piece of property, and we believe it will hold up well and challenge the Symetra Tour," said Shearon, who also designed New Jersey's Riverwinds and Vineyards courses and has done remodeling work on many top Philadelphia area courses. "The key will be placing the ball in the proper position on each hole, and the contours of the land may dictate which side of fairway should be favored. It's a true player's course."

The event will be preceded by practice rounds and a pro-am. 

Details on sponsorships and the pro-am area available at