Updated: March 17, 2021
FORE! In Green Bay - No, not that #4
Green Bay is known for football (duh!), cheese (check!), craft beer (for sure!) and golf (absolutely?). For a greater part of six-months, Greater Green Bay has some perfect golf weather to go along with its beautiful golf courses! During the summers of 2017, 2018 and 2019, the LPGA even made a tour stop in Greater Green Bay. Pack your most ridiculous argyle shorts, sport your lucky golf hat, stock your bag with TaylorMade (Mark King, the former CEO, is a GB native) and get to Green Bay for a long weekend of golf across the city.
Here’s a review of three featured courses!
Brown County Golf Course
You may be thinking, “Oh, ok. A county course? No thanks.”
But Brown County Golf Course isn’t like other county courses you may have experienced. This has been named a Golf Digest Top 50 Public Golf Courses and has also been listed as the 9th Best Municipal Golf Course Nationally.
This course has been around since 1958, when it was designed by Lawrence Packard. Packard not only has over 250 course designs on his resume, but he was also responsible for designing part of Chicago’s O’hare Airport.
The greensmanship of this course is superb. From tee box, to fairway, [to the rough, if your golf game is anything like mine], to the green – the care put into this course is probably why Brown County GC has been regarded highly on national lists.
One of my favorite aspects of playing here is the coziness of playing through a heavily wooded course, while still having open enough fairways to tee-off comfortably. Those cozy trees create the most magnificent pin backdrop during the beautiful Wisconsin fall afternoons.
“I don’t want you to play my courses once. I want you to come back. I want you to have fun.” -Lawrence Packard
Brown County Golf Course is one I play regularly and have fun at often! As a visitor, you may only play here once, but I’m confident it will be a great day on the course for you.
Shorewood Golf Course – University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Campus
A 9-hole course throughout the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay campus, Shorewood Golf Course can be played in half the time of an 18-hole course but provides the full golf experience. There is no skimping on quality or distance. This course is great for any skill level, providing five tee boxes to shoot from for a total distance between 1705 yards all the way up to 2843 yards.
The rolling terrain at Shorewood Golf Course provides added challenges. Many of the greens are at a slightly higher elevation than the tee boxes. Strategizing club choice for the many uphill shots requires some different skills than you may be used to.
Many of the greens sit up on a pedestal looking down at you shooting from the fairway (or hopefully not, but maybe, somewhere else) daring you to approach. As you prepare to chip onto the green, take note of the many bunkers surrounding your target. You’re here to golf, not go to the beach. Once you’ve conquered the elevated hole placement and avoided the sand, the greens open a new set of challenges. The ball moves off your putter rather quickly leaving little room for error.
There’s no need to remember any of these tips. Each tee box has detailed signs providing helpful overview maps of the entire hole with noteworthy distances.
While Shorewood Golf Course brings you through the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, you never get the feeling like you’re on a college campus. The seclusion of the course due to the heavy population of mature trees throughout (this course has been around since 1931), gives you the feeling of spending the day with ‘nature’ as your golf partner. As I was in my cart heading toward my ball, there were several times a deer ran across the fairway within a 9-iron of me. At one point she even brought with her a frolicking baby fawn on her golf course adventures.
End your round on the 9th hole with a slight dog leg and rolling hills so big you’re shooting blind to the green. After you sink your final putt, don’t forget to ring the bell to cue the group behind you it’s safe to approach the green… or as a celebratory sounding of a round well done!
During the winter months or inclement weather, you can still get your golf fix using Shorewood’s professional TruGolf Indoor Simulator. Choose to play over 50 different golf courses, or use the precision swing analytics in a range setting. You can rent the simulator by the hour (or half-hour) with a maximum of 4-golfers at a total price of $24 per hour.
Thornberry Creek at Oneida Golf Course
As the official golf course of the Green Bay Packers, the championship quality of Thornberry Creek at Oneida Golf Course should be evident before you even lace up your golf shoes. Aside from the quality of the amenities, golfers are also treated like champions! Be sure to arrive well ahead of your tee-time. You’ll be greeted by bag attendants to load your clubs into your cart for you. Included in your green fee is the opportunity to loosen up at the range and practice on the chipping and putting greens.
Choose from either the 18-hole Legends Champions Course or the Original Iroquois 9-hole Course.
The Legends Champions Course prominently displays one of sports’ most iconic logos, the Packers G, painted into the side of the first fairway. Welcome to a round of golf in Packers Country!
You’ll begin and end the Legends Champions Course with a few holes through a northwoods feel environment. Throughout the middle holes of the round, you’ll weave in and out of open meadows and past beautiful homes in one of Greater Green Bay’s most prestigious neighborhoods.
This course provides a variety of scenery and challenges. You’ll have to avoid over 70 sand bunkers and 11 water hazards throughout the 6,934-yard course (blue tees). A unique-twist to this course is that every hole is named after a historically important part of the Oneida Indian Tribe culture.
The Original Iroquois 9-hole Course was recently voted “9-Hole Course of the Year.” After playing, you’ll easily see why! This course has the original charm you’d expect from an older course. Driving along the cobblestone cart path brings you to the mindset of golfing an original course in Scotland (the home of golf). But as you move through the wooded course, you’ll beautifully be pleasantly reminded you’re golfing in Green Bay.
Although a 9-hole course, golf it twice for the full-18 experience. Each hole offers two greens for a completely different front nine verse back nine. Front nine flags are white, back nine flags are red. (Or you could just play whatever green your ball lands closest to. We won’t tell!)
The large pro-shop features some great Green Bay golf memorabilia.
Thornberry Creek also has a great Sports Pub & Grill with an outdoor patio overlooking the course. Enjoy an excellent bloody mary, an extensive craft beer list and an impressive premium cigar selection! They also serve a variety of pub fare and fine dining options.
This will be a round of golf to remember. The LPGA Tour even scheduled a stop to host a tournament at Thornberry Creek at Oneida in July of ’17, ’18 and ’19.
We hope to see you golfing throughout Greater Green Bay soon. And if you ever need a golf buddy, just let me know!