October 17 – The Michigan Golf Course Owners Association recently announced that The Legend at Shanty Creek Resort in Bellaire, a 1980s Arnold Palmer design, was named the organization’s 2014 course of the year.
“With a long list of accomplishments, along with community contributions and exceptional management, the beautiful northern Michigan property was an easy choice,” MGCOA executive director Kate Moore said in a released statement. “The golf course exemplifies what the consumer of golf in our state is looking for: exceptional service, quality golf course, reasonable rates in a friendly atmosphere. Shanty Creek has a long heritage of providing quality golf at affordable pricing with great hospitality.”
The Legend has been rated at 4.5 stars by Golf Digest. The course also has hosted several state tournaments, including the Michigan PGA Championship.
For people visiting Shanty Creek, The Legend is one of two very good designs on the property. The other is Tom Weiskopf’s design, the Cedar River Golf Course, which has received positive national reviews, as well.
“We are thrilled and honored to be selected and proud of our staff and management,” general manager Pete Bigford said in the same announcement.
Director of golf and PGA professional Brian Kautz has tried to establish “grow the game” initiatives to make golf more approachable and easier for beginners and less experienced players. The resort was one of the first in Michigan to add FootGolf, doing so on the property’s original Summit Golf Course, which includes par-three tees on every hole and optional 15-inch cups.
Head superintendent Mike Richards follows guidelines of the Michigan Turfgrass Environmental Stewardship Program: to advance the environmental stewardship of Michigan’s golf industry, including fish and wildlife habitat, indigenous vegetation, and to protect water resources.
The property officially will be recognized at the Michigan Golf Business Conference and Vendor Fair on Dec. 3 at the Soaring Eagle Resort in Mt. Pleasant.