Southern Hills Golf Course – A Statement In Super
By E. Nolan
There are courses you love that you could play every day. Southern Hills is that kind of course for many metro golfers (north, south, east and west). The 18-hole, Par 71 championship course is only 6,314 yards from the tips and varies down from there across three other tee box sets. It is open, fast, friendly and fun. I refer to it as “Subtle Hills” because that’s what I remember most about it… the gentle up and down, back and forth, and purely pleasurable paths from tee to green.
Southern Hills provides the complete package to visitors, from the practice facility to the food and full bar, to the great golf and even better service. They know the bar is set high in the South Metro and they meet the bar. Scratch that… they exceed it. They march to the beat of their own drummer – that drummer being GM Nate Cardin, an enthusiastic and totally down to earth guy who is very much in tune with the social side of golf. Active on social media, and always promoting the game in general, Nate loves drawing new crowds in to his course with NEW ideas. “In this day and age,” he says, (contrary to popular opinion) “people still have time to play golf. They just want to make sure their time is well spent and (more importantly) well valued where they play. We do all we can to give you that here. That and something different.”
Oh, they’re different alright… in some unique, cool and clever ways. Southern Hills has introduced phenomena like music on the first tee, Convenience Stations (beyond the turn) at 7 and 15, a strong Junior Golf program, Friday Night Date Nights and Sunday Fundays with $1 beers and All-You-Can-Drink Bloody Mary specials (just to name a few of the fun features). Something for everyone is more than just a phrase here… it’s a statement. Their entire program is a statement… largely on topnotch service.
Great service is one thing (certainly IS what you get at Southern Hills), but all the other memorable aspects of the “golf experience” are in equal focus at this gorgeous field of golf holes in Farmington. Fun hole after fun hole awaits you. There are ponds and meandering streams that provide plenty of drama and intrigue throughout, beginning with the (creek) crossovers at #1 and #2. I honestly can’t decide if my favorite hole is the 6th, with its many elements of beauty and the pond guarded green or the stellar 9th with another pond guarded green.
Many a grateful regular has found their greens to be among the fastest, best conditioned, and most fun they play all year. They’re tough to stick, tough to read and I’d advise you not to get caught above the hole too often, but the consistent challenge only augments my appreciation of the course in general. I love the amount of forgiveness off the tees, that you can hammer the driver all day all over the place and not be punished for… well… “being yourself” off any given tee. It’s that factor that most makes me qualify Southern Hills as a course every can play and love, regardless of skill level. That, and the fact that everything is right there in front of you, visible, risk and (major) rewards. I will concede that the Par 3s are some of the more difficult I’ve played in Minnesota (not tricky, just hard), but then I’m a “bring it on” kind of guy. (I like to EARN my bogeys.)
Regardless as to what “kind” of golfer you are, you no doubt appreciate great value, and Southern Hills goes WAY NORTH of “value.” A VERY walkable course, you can play Southern Hills at it’s peakest Peak Rate of just $39 (add a cart for $17), with Twilight steals at only $26 (even on weekends). Sunday afternoon, with all its specials, is NOT a slow day here – a stark contrast from most area courses.
Southern Hills has a formidable Augusta-Style clubhouse, with a great pro shop and Clubhouse Grill to hang out in. The Clubhouse is open year round for Holiday Parties and even winter events for up to 60 people, but in “golf season” the Clubhouse and Pavilion can host 150 guests for weddings, corporate outings and other events with a scenic, 50 foot wall of windows overlooking the golf course.
There’s something to be said for courses that get your juices pumping in the parking lot and keep them pumping from the first tee to the last green. Something to be said… yeah… Southern Hills speaks volumes to those ends. Kudos to Nate and his staff for getting what it is we all want in a golf round, and providing it every day.