Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Round #26: Ohio - Longaberger Golf Club

The trip from Indiana into Ohio would not be complete without stopping at a few quilt shops. Quilt shops can be quite interesting, as exemplified by two examples I have included in prior blogs (Mama’s Quilt Shop in Louisiana and Homestead Hearth in Missouri). It was apparent we found another winner as we pulled up in front of the Sew-Ezy Quilting Studio in Sharonville, Ohio. The store’s unique front porch beckoned to me while Julie searched through their bolts of fabric inside.

A surprise awaited us as we pulled into the hotel parking lot in Heath, Ohio. Our BMW was outclassed by the caliber of vehicles sitting in the lot. A company named Supercar Tours had 5 vehicles sitting in the parking lot that each carried a price tag in the $170-$220K range. These are not models you can see at the local dealer. It is not every day you see automobiles like the Bentley Continental GT, Ferrari F430 Spider, Mercedes SLR Mclaren or the Audi R8 V10 together in a small town parking lot. 
 The line-up of fast cars

 Bentley Continental GT

 Mercedes SLR Mclaren

 Audi R8 V10

Ferrari F430 Spider

Some of you may not know that Longaberger is a family owned business best known for speciality baskets. That fact was clearly displayed in the design of their corporate office. We passed by the office building on Highway 16 as we drove to the course. Opened in 1997, cherry woodwork used in the building was harvested from the Longaberger Golf Club.
Longaberger corporate office

Round: #26
Location: Nashport, OH
Golf Digest Best-In-State Rank: #15
Date: 16 Jun, tee off at 10:10 AM
Conditions: sunny, 4 MPH wind, 75 degrees
Yardage: 6,498
Lost balls: 0
Score: 84 on a par 72
A nice Saturday morning on Father’s Day week-end meant there was no shortage of players at the course. The starter read us a long list of rules on the first tee box. He was quite frustrated every time he looked over his shoulder and observed players driving in “forbidden” areas on the #1 fairway. It was the first time a starter has provided me with names of the girls who work the beer cart and Halfway House. I just wanted to play golf - - - not go out on a date.
377-yard par 4 hole #1

I was paired up with two young men from Newark for our round of golf. Jason was a sales representative for Pepperidge Farms. He was married last November; his wife worked for State Farm Insurance. I am still hitting golf balls with the State Farm logo that were a retirement gift from my next door neighbor, Andy Stull. Pierce was the 2nd young man. As a single young man, he may have been the only one interested in the girls’ names working that afternoon. Pierce worked on the shipping dock at Hendrickson, a manufacturer of 18-wheel semi-truck axles. Jason & Pierce have been friends since the 7th grade. They both had a hard start on the first hole, sending their tee shots out-of-bounds into tall grass. They were better players than they showed on the first hole. Jason followed up by shooting a birdie on the 2nd hole.
 435-yard par 4 hole #2

 353-yard par 4 hole #3

 180-yard par 3 hole #5 (view from the green back toward the tee box)

Pierce & Jason

Their length off the tee encouraged them to drive for the green with their tee shots on the 287-yard hole #6 and the 335-yard hole #11. With the front nine holes carved out of a densely wooded area, they managed to lose a couple of balls into the trees. It was also easy to picture how the area produced enough cherry trees for the Longaberger corporate office building. 
 287-yard par 4 hole #6

 Hole #6 (view from the green back toward the tee box)

 335-yard par 4 hole #11

Hole #11 (view from the fairway of approach shot to the green)

The round played quite slow. The rangers stopped by to tell us they were trying to speed up the groups ahead, but with little impact. Our pace was also impacted after Jason & Pierce both hit tee shots within reach of the green on the 504-yard par 5 hole #4. We sat in the fairway for a long time waiting the the group of ahead of us to hit their 3rd shots to the green and putt out before we could move ahead. A narrow green and adjacent pond made it a risk/reward shot that did not work out so well for them.
 504-yard par 5 hole #4

 Hole #4 (view from the fairway of 2nd shot to the green)

 150-yard par 3 hole #9 (view from the green back toward the tee box)

476-yard par 4 hole #16 (view from the green back up the fairway)

In spite of the pace of play it was a pleasant way to spend the day. The weather was great, the course was challenging, and it was fun watching my two young partners attack the course. Julie picked me up after I finished and we drove out of Ohio toward Pennsylvania. 
 434-yard par 4 hole #18

Hole #18 (view from the green back up the fairway)

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