I had the opportunity to play at Celebration Golf Club yesterday. It’s the 2nd course I’ve played out of the Orlando Golf Trail courses. The Orlando Golf Trail is a group of 10 Disney area golf courses located within short driving distance of Orlando, Florida.
Let me preface this post by saying sorry for the quality of the pictures. I brought the camera, brought the battery, but forgot the stupid memory card! I guess in today’s world that the equivalent of bringing your camera but forgetting the film (for all of you oldies but goodies). So after about five minutes of cursing the gods, my buddy Spence suggested using my phone camera. Brilliant! Thank you technology!!! 🙂
So the pictures you see are those taken with a 1.2 mega pixel phone camera. A little funny side note, because of this experience, I learned that I can store all of my phone photos online free of charge. Whenever I take a photo it always asks “Do you want to send this to my album?” and my mental response is always “why the **** would I take a photo if I didn’t want to save it!?” What the amazing little creature was inquiring was if I wanted to post it online for everyone’s viewing pleasure… If your wondering, that is NOT me wearing pink stilettos about to tee off…..
On with the show!
Celebration was quite a treat!
Designed by father & son Jones. Here’s a link that discusses the design
We tee’d off at 8am, the starter Mike was very informative and gave us a solid rundown of the course. A couple of cool points about the area.
The movie “The Truman Show” was filmed in Celebration.
Celebration, FL was designed based off Walt Disney’s original idea behind Epcot. But I suppose a creepy, cookie cutter community wouldn’t really appeal to tourists.. 🙂 I guess a better term than creepy would be crazy expensive…
So the course was great. Very challenging, overall in really great shape. The only qualms i had with it were many of the greens had brown patches, they really didn’t interfere with the balls roll, it’s just an aesthetics thing. I’m not really sure if the greens keeper can prevent these blemishes, I think the combination of excessive sun and watering causes them, and many of the courses I’ve seen recently have been sporting these blights. So it might just be a seasonal thing, but one would expect more when spending $85 for a round.
The grass was very spongy and the ball had literally no roll. I struck a solid 203 yard three wood that landed on the green and by all accounts should’ve rolled off the back of the green, it bounced once and ended up about an inch behind my ball mark. It was crazy, but hey, I wasn’t complaining, I’d much rather have that than the expected result 🙂
It’s not a terribly long course, only 6257 yards from the golds, but because of the lack of roll, it plays long. There’s some pretty tough holes, for me 4, 9, 12, 18 were the toughest.
The 4th hole was a bad one for me because we had an audience. Don’t you hate when the jerks in front of you end up being courteous golfers and they let your two some play through? Well, I do, especially when it’s a par 5 over water and you totally duff your tee short and the guys watching are kind enough to count your ball skips across the water…. For the record, I had 9! 🙂 Though flustered, I still managed to squeeze a bogey out of that one.
The 9th featured a slightly blind tee shot and the out of bounds stick is really really close to the right side of the green. My approach shot landed about a foot away from the green on the right and I was out of bounds… stupid red stick cost me my par!
The 12th is a totally blind tee shot that I’m going to try my best to explain and illustrate with pictures 🙂 So you go under a bridge and then over a bridge and at that point, you need to stop to examine the fairway, because when you get to the tees it’s a dogleg left and you cant see the pin. The best approach is slightly left of the fairway bunker about 225 yards out.
Here’s the bridge you go under
Here’s a shot of the fairway, right after you cross the wooden bridge and turn left, stop and examine the hole, it’ll help you plan out your approach.
To the left of the Tee box about 30 feet down is an evil tree with baseball gloves for leaves, be very wary of this creature.. The perfect shots flight path would be right out of reach of these treacherous limbs and set you up for a great second shot, but my shot ended up nicking a branch and killing my shot at par.
Above is the 16th, a 211 yard par 3…
The 18th was my favorite hole, a loooooooong 566 yard Par 5, after hitting my drive and 3 wood, I was still 111 yards away….. But it was fun!
Well, if you couldn’t tell by my extra long post, this is a very memorable course and one I highly recommend.
Two disappointing notes.. The carts GPS, while very accurate when available, was very unreliable, I think at least 1/2 the holes, the GPS was down. Now, I’m not saying that one needs GPS in order for the round to be a success, but hey, if it’s there and supposed to be functioning, kind of irritating when it doesn’t.
The other disappointment was a lack of ice cold spearmint towels… A friend of mine who had played the course before was raving at how they have a guy in a cart who’s sole purpose in life is to make sure you are refreshed. So this mythical man comes to your cart, takes a fresh clean towel, dips it in a cooler filled with ice and spearmint water and hands it to you to break the sunstroke your likely to encounter playing Orlando during summer. So, finally my day came to experience this phenomenon and the only thing we encountered was an extremely pleasant cart girl who pluralized the word sweetie. Hey sweeties…. I didn’t think it was possible…
Oh! One last cool point! There’s tons of hawks on the course. Ok, I’m a Floridian by birth, and I saw two things on the course I’ve never seen before, first off, I saw a field mouse, or at least something that resembles a field mouse <hope he wasn’t related to mickey> and then I saw a hawk swoop down and snatch a field mouse! Picture yours truly cowering in terror screaming like a little girl trying to avoid the hitchcockian moment that’s about to occur only to see the hawk fly overhead and take down the fabled field mouse! It was awesome!
When the round was over, the cart guy asked “you guys heading to the club house for a drink? and we responded “naah, gotta get on home.” He then produced a couple of free drink vouchers and we quickly changed our tune 🙂
So needless to say, I’m giving Celebration 4 1/2 stars.
Really need to check this one out.
Let me know your thoughts on the course!