Since the inception of "Play Golf Minnesota Week" the courses in the Brainerd lakes area have faced a conundrum.
The fun-filled week of clinics, free lessons and discounted golf is in its third season since the Minnesota Section PGA and Minnesota Golf Association created it as part of the "Play Golf Minnesota" campaign.
Monday was the first day and as always was titled "Minnesota Colleges and University Day." Customers who wore school logos would get a discounted round.
The bagpipes sounded Saturday at Madden's Pine Beach East Course to signal the beginning of the golf season at Madden's Resort in East Gull Lake.
If you missed it don't worry. Not many courses in our area participate in the week.
Many reasons, according to area course owners, but the main one is the reluctance to commit to anything when course management isn't sure the course will be ready for play.
Other reasons for not participating is that area courses are already offering discounted spring rates. Plus, this is also prime time for area high school teams to host invitationals and conference meets.
Most area PGA professionals think the idea is a good one. Anything that gets people through the doors in these tough economic times is a bonus. The problem is timing. The event is just too early.
But while buds are just popping on trees and grass is greening, courses farther south are ready for action.
Three resorts are participating in the week-long event: Madden's, Cragun's and Grand View Lodge.
This is what's being offered.
Tuesday is "Senior Day." Seniors can play the Pine Beach East Course for $34. At Cragun's The Legacy seniors can play for $30 from 9 a.m. to noon. After that Cragun's is hosting it's women's spring kickoff from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Legacy Grill.
At Grand View Lodge's The Pines and The Preserve it's 2-for-1 green fees after noon.
Wednesday is "Women's Day." Women can play the East Course for $34. At Cragun's women can play nine holes on the Par 3 course and receive a free glass of wine for $10 or play the championship course for $20.
GVL will again have 2-for-1 green fees for women on the Pines and Preserve after noon.
Thursday is "Free Lesson Day." Chris Foley, head PGA Professional and owner of Chris Foley Golf Schools at Madden's, is offering a free 15-minute individual/video lesson.
GVL is offering free 10-minute lessons from its PGA staff. It's men's league day at The Legacy.
Friday is "Get Fit for Golf Day." Foley is offering a free driver fitting with a new radar-based launch monitor. Plus, the walking green fee on the East Course is $22.
The Legacy is hosting the Duffer's Open.
Saturday will be "Play Golf Minnesota Day." Patrons can play the East for $34. At the Legacy it's buy one get one free on the Par 3 course and on the championship course paying customers receive a 50-percent coupon to play again later in the season.
Sunday is "Family Day." Foley is offering a free family clinic at 1 p.m. Families can play the East for $25 per adult with children playing for free. On the Par 3 at the Legacy adults play for $10 and children for $5.
For complete details call the courses' pro shop.
Again, if your favorite course isn't partaking in "Play Golf Minnesota Week" don't fret, discounted spring rates are being offered at most area courses.
jeremy millsop, sports writer, may be reached at email@example.com or at 855-5856.
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