With its tree-lined fairways and routinely exceptional conditioning, the first time visitor would be excused for thinking that Bowling Green resembles many of those old-world golf courses that often host U.S. Opens and other major golf events.
However, that same first-time visitor soon discovers that while the course looks like a U.S. Open course, Bowling Green is fun, enjoyable, and playable.
First and foremost, Bowling Green is a beautiful golf course offering wonderful views of the surrounding countryside. That’s right, you’re in the countryside, far removed from the hustle, noise, and poor air of the city.
At Bowling Green, you are interacting with nature and the abundance of pines and oaks that define the course.
What is traditional golf course design? At Bowling Green, you will quickly find out as the routing takes full advantage of the land and its natural features. Noted golf course architect Geoffrey Cornish, who has authored several books about golf course design, simply laid the course out on the land instead of moving millions of yards of dirt. This approach lends the course both beauty and playability: you enjoy the natural surroundings as well as the golf (and it takes less time to play). It’s not a torture-track designed to ‘test the best’ and beat up everyone else.
Many new courses (and many courses in the area) feature long distances between green and tee. Not so at Bowling Green. Greens and tees are close together. This makes the course perfect for walkers and speeds up play.
The superintendent and his staff have two goals. One is to keep fairways, tees, greens, and bunkers in top condition at all times so that a shot from the fairway is played from a good lie and a well-struck and well-directed putt likely drops in the hole. The second, but no less important goal is to maintain the course with speed of play in mind: rough is never so penal that it’s impossible to find a ball; and the staff remove undergrowth so that epic recovery shots from the trees are very possible.
At most public-access courses in the area, if you want to walk, particularly on the weekend, the pro shop staff will look at you like you have three heads. Not so at Bowling Green. You can walk at any time in keeping with one of the most hallowed traditions of the game. You can ride if you like but the ownership at Bowling Green understands that there’s nothing quite like enjoying a beautiful golf course on foot.
The staff keep the greens at a sensible 8-10 on the stimpmeter-your ball will roll well but you will not be worrying that a four-foot downhill putt will roll 20 feet past the hole. Our greens and green speeds make the game more enjoyable and help to speed up play.
Finally, Bowling Green provides superb variety without being punishing. While many golf courses offer ‘unique challenges’ and ‘signature holes’ Bowling Green provides ample variety so that each hole is memorable without resorting to design features that make the course “U.S. Open difficult” for most golfers. It may look like a U.S. Open course but it doesn’t play like one.