Try Something New at These FootGolf Courses in Michigan
FootGolf is one of the fastest-growing sports and it's no surprise that it's taking off across Pure Michigan, too. This combination of golf and soccer is played on a standard regulation golf course, a resource in which Michigan is rich, ranking in the top five states when it comes to number of courses. The state is also known for innovation—and inventive well describes this combination of soccer and golf.
The game is just as it sounds. It's played on a golf course but using feet as the club and a #5 soccer ball as the golf ball. Hole lengths are shortened, not unlike the way front and back tees are regularly used for players of differing ability, and instead of aiming for the regular hole and flag, you kick toward the larger 21-inch diameter cups that join regular holes on the greens.
Grab a friend with clubs or without and give this new sport a try at one of these Michigan courses:
1. Shanty Creek Resort – Bellaire
Shanty Creek offers FootGolf on its Summit course, where there's one FootGolf hole on every green. Rates here wrap in ball rental and there are other perks too, including on-site lodging. When the round is done, rent one of their new e-bikes, which—like FootGolf—lets a group of varying athletic abilities ride together by offering powered assistance when the hills get steep.
2. Elmbrook Golf Course – Traverse City
Elmbrook is known for encouraging fun. The course offers night golfing with glow-in-the-dark balls and has 18 holes of FootGolf set up on the front nine. The rates are discounted for a group. Interestingly, they initially added FootGolf thinking it would be a draw for children's birthday parties, but the median age has ranged between 20 and 35.
3. Dunes Golf Club – EmpireThe Dunes Golf Club offers 18 holes at a club located near Glen Lake and the Sleeping Bear Dunes on M-22, a route voted America's prettiest fall drive. The nearby Pierce Stocking Scenic Trail in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is worth visiting after a game for the stunning views.
4. Treetops Resort – GaylordTreetops offers FootGolf on its Rick Smith Tradition course, one often listed among Michigan's best courses. When the round is done, there's on-site horseback riding, kayaking, bike rentals, fly fishing, whitewater rafting and some of the prettiest fall vistas.
5. The Jewel – Mackinac Island
The Jewel in the Grand Hotel offers FootGolf daily from on one of the most unique courses in Northern Michigan—and perhaps the world. Built in 1901 and redesigned by golf course architect Jerry Matthews in 1987, the Jewel is the only course in the country at which golfers move from the front to the back nine on a horse-drawn carriage. It also boasts a view of the Mackinac Bridge.