EAST GULL LAKE -- There is only one chance to make a good first impression and Cragun's Legacy Golf Course nails it.
With the new clubhouse completed, golfers driving up to play the Legacy immediately know the course is going to be impressive, the service excellent and the five-hour golf outing is going to be worth it.
The two-story clubhouse, which spans 33,000 square feet, complements the challenging Legacy course perfectly with its relaxed and comfortable environment and inviting decor.
Completed in late May, the clubhouse offers a classic pro shop filled with golfing apparel and merchandise
The interior of the new clubhouse at Cragun's Legacy Golf Course has a warm, comforting decor to go along with its food and service. (Dispatch Photos by Steve Kohls)
"It's a fully stocked pro shop," said Tom Kientzle, director of golf at the Legacy. "It has all the name-line clothing and top of the line specialty clubs -- putters, Callaway drivers. We have sweatshirts, hats, gloves. The product is nice stuff, which resort guests expect."
Along with the pro shop the new facility has a wonderful restaurant offering a complete menu and bar, a huge pavilion for large golf tournaments and other functions, locker rooms and the Audubon room, a meeting room with a great view.
The view from the clubhouse overlooks the 27th green, the 19th tee box and the ninth hole. With a patio for outside dining, the new clubhouse is just another reason to play golf at Cragun's or enjoy an evening of fine dining at the Legacy Grille.
With televisions visible from any angle, patrons may up on the latest golf news or sporting events while enjoying a peaceful lunch before their next round.
Kientzle said Cragun's tried to give the restaurant, which is open to the public, a casual yet somewhat sporty feel. The tranquil view accents the great cuisine.
"We invite anyone and everyone to just come out and see the view. It's well worth it," said Kientzle. "There's eight televisions with the golf channel or some sporting event on. It does have a sort of formal touch to it as well."
Members of the golf staff are dressed in black and white knickers, Payne Stewart style, for a classy, yet functional touch.
"We didn't really intend it to be in memory of Payne Stewart but every one that sees them is really impressed," Kientzle said. "It does have a special meaning with his death.
"It sets off a real sense of class to the organization and it sets off our outside staff," Kientzle said. "They are very knowledgeable. We've had nothing but accolades from people who've experienced our service people."
One nice feature to put the arriving golfer at ease is a huge clock adorning the entrance of the clubhouse.
"I've been to a lot of clubhouses all over the country and (owners) Dutch and Irma (Cragun) have a lot to be proud off," Kientzle said. "Our staff is humbled to be able to work out of a facility like that. It has everything a golfer would expect.
"It sets the stage as far as the premier golf clubhouse. As people come here and create memories it will draw them back. From the moment they pull in and see the fabulous facility until they putt off the last green we hope the experience is tremendous."
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