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Tee Times Magazine | Minneapolis/St. Paul

Craguns 2017

Fairways & Greens
June 25, 2017

Voyager Village - Green And Golf In Wisconsin
Eric Hart


The name Voyager Village, for some reason, conjures visions of Vikings (not quite sure why). Not the Minnesota Vikings... but actual Norwegian ones. Surrounded by a gorgeous lake it's possible they were here at one time, but the wooden boats have been replaced with jet skis and the Capital One commercial types have traded places with plenty of purple and gold clad club wielding visitors (graciously hosted by their green and gold brethren). It may be Wisconsin, but at just under 100 miles from the Twin Cities, it is overrun by Minnesotans with a passion for fun golf. Especially on weekends.

One guest, who had brought three of his friends up here from St. Paul, mentioned that this trip had essentially become an annual "ritual of habit" for him. "You usually have to pay much more for course conditions like these, for season-long green like this, for lakeside peace and tranquility. We try to come up at least 2-3 times a year, stay a night, play a couple of rounds, and impressively every time it's the same reward. When you know your expectations will be met, if not exceeded... why wouldn't you keep coming back?" His guests were equally impressed. "It's a fun course for everyone. Very fair. Consistent greens. Very few bugs. We'll definitely be telling others, and coming back ourselves." (Important to note this was at the completion of their round... so no doubt what their friend had promoted had indeed been experienced.)

Voyager Village's golf pro, Rob Witter, was thrilled to hear about the praise (and demand) from their Twin Cities clientele. "We couldn't be more thrilled to hear the responses from our guests this season regarding the condition of our course," he said. "Only 20% of the golf courses in the country have a certified golf superintendent. Voyager is lucky to be one of them. Our superintendent, Steve Johnson, and his staff are dedicated to providing all of our players with a golfing experience that is second to none. And the Voyager community supports his work by providing the resources he needs to do the job right. That allows us to provide our players with a first class experience at a great value." The natural landscape of the course - rolling hills, swamps, ponds, forests - all contribute to an outstanding golf experience.

One of the more unique features of Voyager Village is that it was designed with a landing strip right on the course. As we played down the first fairway an airplane took off no more than 100 yards from us. As we came back towards the clubhouse (on #6) another landed, again no more than 100 yards from us. The planes (and loon we heard calling on several holes) were a welcome variation of bird from the geese found at many area courses. Better yet, the course routing was as advertised, creatively arching across the hills, most holes distant enough from each other to give a welcome feeling of isolation.

Several great holes dot each nine. The opposing doglegs of #2 and #3 provide much appreciated tee shot variety with the par 3 4th (downhill over a pond) perhaps the most beautiful single shot on the entire course. The back has more dips and climbs than the front, diving gracefully down and up on the scenic par 5 11th and peaking at #17, where lakeside panoramic views abound off the tee. #18 is many a visitor's favorite, with a tee shot over a pond and an uphill approach to a friendly green. Have a score to settle at the end of a close round? Adjacent the 18th green there's a fun 9-hole mini golf course, complimentary with your green fee. Too much fun to pass up, let me know if you break my 28.

There's far more value to Voyager Village than just their championship golf course. They also have a par 3, nine-hole course that hugs the lakeshore and provides a boat full of scenic tee shots. Their Legends Bar & Grill serves fresh grilled sizzling burgers and charismatic service. There's a pool and fitness facility in the clubhouse, tennis, bocce ball and horseshoe courts just outside. You definitely get more than you would expect on a visit. But maybe that's what makes it so enticing to the Twin Cities golfer. A couple from Edina that we spoke to offered their own (similar) takes. "It's an escape that isn't too far to escape to." (His wife laughed.) "Sunrise on the lake. Loons calling. A golf round where you feel like you're by yourself and a beautiful sunset on the lake. That's why we come here." (Her husband smiled.) 6,000 acres of happiness. Gotta love it.





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