Family golf offers youngsters the chance to develop skills in a sport that can be played for a lifetime.
Here are seven places where your crew can tee it up together.
1. Kingsmill Resort. Williamsburg, VA.
Families can play three championship caliber 18-hole courses that offer rolling hills, tree-lined tracks and coastal play along the James River. Children 7-16 can sign up for Junior Golf Camps that teach fundamentals while making sure youngsters enjoy the game. They'll experience play on courses designed by legendary players including Arnold Palmer and Curtis Strange. The family-friendly resort also offers hiking, biking, Segway tours, and fishing as well as organized kids activities.
Contact: 800.832.5665; www.Kingsmill.com.
2. Marriott Golf Resorts.
A yearlong series of one-day family golf events is under way at 32 Marriott golf destinations around the world. The sixth annual International Family Golf Festival encourages family members of all experience and age levels to join. Free golf instruction, clinics, interactive games and the chance to win prizes are all part of the program. Families can play at no charge after 3 p.m. as part of Marriott’s Kids Golf-4-Free program. Children staying at the J.W. Marriott San Antonio Hill Country also have access to instruction as part of the TOURAcademy Junior Golf Camps program. Check the website for festival dates and locations.
Contact: jwsanantonio.com; marriottgolf.com
3. Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort and Spa at Gainey Ranch, Scottsdale, Ariz.
Kids can make their way to the junior tees on three nine-hole tracks in a resort town where sun-drenched golf attracts professionals and part-time players. Youngsters age 15 and younger play free with a paying adult. Junior clubs, lessons and course activities are also available. Take a break from play to ride a gondola around the lake, take a two-wheeled spin through the nearby greenbelt or cool off in the water playground. Send your clubs directly to the pro shop via Shipsticks.
Contact: 480-444-1234; www.scottsdale.hyatt.com; www.shipsticks.com
4. Pinehurst Resort, Pinehurst, N.C.
The largest golf resort in America, Pinehurst sports junior tee markers and scorecards on all but one of eight courses. During the summer and holiday weeks, course No. 8 is reserved for families after 5 p.m. Ask about family clinics and free rentals for juniors.
Contact: 1-800-487-4653; pinehurst.com
5. Hershey, Pa.
Warm up on the miniature course before heading to the nine-hole Spring Creek Golf Course or the Hershey Country Club. Ask about family golf packages that include accommodations, play and sunset admission to Hersheypark. In addition to golf and theme park fun, consider a visit to ZooAmerica, a chocolate-theme spa experience or relaxing time by the pool.
Contact: 1-800-437-7439; hersheypa.com
6. Resort at Squaw Creek, Olympic Valley, Calif.
Your clan can swing away on the resort’s Robert Trent Jones-designed course as part of the family golf program. Play a quick and no-stress round on the front nine from the family tees, located just 150 yards from the green. Kids can spend time in the Mountain Buddies program enjoying active pursuits while grown-ups take time for a full 18 holes.
Contact: 530-583-6300; squawcreek.com.
7. Oasis at Death Valley Resort. Furnace Creek, CA. At 214 feet below sea level, the rolling 18-hole, par 70 course scores points as the world’s lowest elevation golf course. Palm trees frame the fairways and majestic mountains provide arresting vistas throughout the course. Water comes into play on nine holes and multiple sets of tees provide a challenge for every member of the family. Located at Death Valley National Park.