Golf Travel News April 10, 2022

Golf Travel News April 10, 2022

In golf travel news this week are items from Play Myrtle Beach, Rumbling Bald, Champion Hill, Central Oregon and River Hills.

LPGA Rookie Haylee Harford Named PlayGolfMyrtleBeach.com Ambassador

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – Haylee Harford, a LPGA rookie with ties to the area, has partnered with Golf Tourism Solutions to become an ambassador for PlayGolfMyrtleBeach.com, the ultimate resource for planning and booking a Myrtle Beach golf trip.

As part of the agreement, the PlayGolfMyrtleBeach.com logo will adorn Harford’s bag, she will make appearances on behalf of the organization, and PGMB will create unique content around her journey.

An Ohio native and collegiate star at Furman University, Harford moved to Myrtle Beach upon graduation, allowing her to work more closely with Classic Swing Golf School’s Ted Frick, her long-time instructor.

“I play golf and live in the Myrtle Beach area, so having Play Golf Myrtle Beach as one of my sponsors is a thrill,”  Harford said. “I enjoy the courses and the professional staff at the clubs and am proud to have the logo on my golf bag. I will continue to spread the word about the amenities in the Myrtle Beach area as I travel around the country on the LPGA Tour.”

“We are thrilled to be working with Haylee and look forward to supporting her during her climb up the LPGA ladder,” said Jenna Hottel, director of marketing for Golf Tourism Solutions. “Haylee has a bright future in the game, she is an engaging personality, and, like so many golfers across the country, has long been aware of the virtues of a Myrtle Beach golf trip.”

After recording eight top 10 finishes in two years on the Symetra Tour, Harford earned her LPGA Tour card at Q-School last winter, shooting 6-under during the eight-round event at Magnolia Grove in Mobile, Ala. Harford finished 32nd, good enough to earn full playing privileges for the 2022 season.

She was named the 2019 Southern Conference Player of the Year and became just the 11th player in SoCon history to be a four-time all-conference honoree during her storied career Furman.

For more information on Myrtle Beach golf, visit PlayGolfMyrtleBeach.com.

Champion Hills Ranked No. 39 in North Carolina Golf Panel’s ‘Top 100 Golf Courses in the State’

(HENDERSONVILLE, N.C.) – Champion Hills, home of Tom Fazio’s seminal “Mountain Masterpiece,” is 39th in the North Carolina Golf Panel’s (NCGP) ranking of the “Top 100 Golf Courses in the State.” 

The NCGP Top 100 is comprised of both public and private courses of which there are over 600 in the Old North State. The vaunted list includes U.S. Open Anchor Site Pinehurst No. 2 at Pinehurst Resort, storied Grandfather Golf and Country Club, Pine Needles Lodge and Club (host of the 2022 Women’s U.S. Open), and Quail Hollow Club (site of the 2022 President’s Cup), as well as other noted Western N.C. courses like Wade Hampton Golf Club and Mountaintop Golf and Lake Club. 

“We are in excellent company on the North Carolina Golf Panel’s ‘Top 100 Golf Courses’ list, and we’re honored to be ranked by fellow North Carolinians who know golf in this state inside and out,” says Champion Hills PGA Head Professional Scooter Buhrman. “Tom Fazio is well-represented among the top 100 courses, and the impact of his design Champion Hills continues to stand the test of time.” 

Champion Hills is Fazio’s former home course and club, and the legendary golf course architect devised a brilliant routing wending through heavily forested hills, deep ravines and cool mountain streams in a scenic Blue Ridge Mountain setting. He and his team of shapers pulled ridges into valleys and filled hollows to create “playing platforms” providing golfers with level lies amid 350-feet of elevation change.

The course has moved up 19 spots in two years on Golfweek’s list of the “Top 200 Residential Golf Courses in the U.S.” to 51st, and additional enhancements are planned through 2022 to further elevate its playability. Of note, Champion Hills is one of the few golf courses in the Carolinas to feature five sets of tees rated for women, responding to the growth in this rapidly expanding player segment. 

Rumbling Bald, Apple Valley Rate Among Best Resorts, Courses in N.C.

North Carolina Golf Panel Releases 2022 Rankings 

(LAKE LURE, N.C.) – Rumbling Bald, the 36-hole golf retreat on Lake Lure an hour east of Asheville, is the No. 4 golf resort in the state, and its marquee Dan Maples-designed course, Apple Valley, makes its debut in the North Carolina Golf Panel’s (NCGP) 2022 rankings. 

Apple Valley is ranked 99th in the “Top 100 Golf Courses,” including public and private courses, and 32nd in the “Top 50 Courses You Can Play.” The highly-regarded mountain layout reopened in 2020 following the installation of new Champion Bermuda greens and other agronomic and aesthetic enhancements. In the resort category, Rumbling Bald trails only Ocean Ridge Plantation (Ocean Isle), Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club (Southern Pines), and Pinehurst Resort (Pinehurst). 

“To say we are excited and honored is a vast understatement. Our team and our board have invested so much in making Rumbling Bald what it is today,” says Rumbling Bald General Manager Jeff Geisler. “North Carolina is one of, if not the, best states for golf in the country, and the North Carolina Golf Panel is widely regarded as one of the most knowledgeable in the industry.” 

To learn more about Rumbling Bald’s golf courses and packages, visit www.rumblingbald.com, or email jdoran@rumblingbald.com. To book packages directly, or to speak with a golf vacation planner, call (828) 694.3072. Golfers are advised to call, email or check the website for course maintenance and closure schedules. Rates include all taxes and fees and are based on full occupancy (four players in a two-bedroom villa or two in a one-bedroom studio).

River Hills Golf & Country Club To Undergo Greens, Bunker Renovation Project This Summer

LITTLE RIVER, S.C. –  River Hills Golf & Country Club, long regarded as one of the Myrtle Beach area’s hidden gems, will close this summer to undergo a complete greens and bunker renovation project, Founders Group International announced.

River Hills will close June 20 and plans to reopen August 21.

FGI worked with Tom Jackson, the course’s original architect, to develop the renovation plan, which will restore the layout’s greens to their original size, expanding the putting surfaces by 40 percent, and install new TifEagle bermudagrass.

The expanded greens will dramatically increase the number of pinnable areas, enhancing the layout and helping ensure outstanding conditions.

Every bunker on the course will be renovated as well, adding greater definition, improving sightlines and upgrading playability. FGI is installing new Capillary Concrete bunker liners, which will eliminate washout and improve drainage.

The work at River Hills is one of two major capital improvement projects FGI is undertaking this summer. Grande Dunes, one of Myrtle Beach’s premier layouts, is undergoing a greens, bunkers and clubhouse renovation effort as well.

For more information on River Hills visit RiverHillsGolf.com For more information on FGI, visit, FoundersGolf.com.

Central Oregon Proves There’s More To Oregon Golf Than bandon Dunes

SUNRIVER, Ore. — It’s widely known that Oregon is home to some of the greatest public golf courses in the country, if not the world. The acclaim and fanfare of Bandon Dunes Golf Resort are a big reason for this reputation, but long before its existence golfers were making their way to another popular Oregon golf destination – Central Oregon.

With nearly 30 golf courses, including three in Golf Digest’s Top 100 (#40 – Pronghorn, #61 – Crosswater, #82 – Tetherow), and a diversity in course design that is rare, Central Oregon has long been considered among the top destinations in the country for a golf trip.

“In terms of variety, playability, accessibility, weather, and course conditions, Central Oregon has to be at or near the top of any golfer’s bucket list of destinations,” says Julia Theisen, president & CEO of Visit Central Oregon. “I often tell people that the fact that David McLay Kidd, who has designed some of the world’s top courses including the original Bandon Dunes course and Central Oregon favorite Tetherow, lives here is testament enough to the quality of play and supporting cast of activities.”

Anchored by the outdoor lover’s paradise of Bend, Central Oregon is home to Championship designs spread throughout the region. That includes the PGA Tour pedigree of Sunriver Resort’s three courses, including Crosswater – a Top 100 mainstay, plus the Jack Nicklaus course at Pronghorn Resort and the David McLay-Kidd (who calls Bend home) gem of Tetherow. Other notable offerings include the player-friendly design of Brasada Ranch, the municipal masterpiece of Juniper Golf Course, the volcanic crushed red cinder bunkers at Aspen Lakes, and the mountain golf designs of Robert Muir Graves and John Fought (redesign) at Black Butte Ranch.

Of course, golf is not all that makes for a great golf trip in Central Oregon, home to nearly 40 breweries, many wineries and tasting rooms, distilleries, and cideries, as well as a creative culinary scene that includes everything from fine dining to an eclectic food truck culture.

For more information on Central Oregon golf, activities, lodging, and experiences, visit www.VisitCentralOregon.com.

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