Florida public golf: Try Cleveland Heights in Lakeland
Those of you who read this blog regularly, and they extend to the farthest reaches of the globe, know I’m always on the hunt for good, city-owned courses, because they are usually cheap and available to anyone.
Cleveland Heights is a good find. It’s essentially in downtown Lakeland, but it has a variety of wildlife, including alligators, hawks, eagles and other Florida animals.
It was built back in 1927 and designed by a man named W.S. Flynn, a contemporary of Donald Ross, who obviously influenced his work: the course has the small, elevated greens Ross loved so much.
It hosts around 80,000 rounds a year, so don’t expect pristine conditions, especially on the greens, but the layout is interesting, though short, and varied. And the people who work there are genuinely eager about their home course, which isn’t always the case with munis.
And – get this – it has a “steam bar,” where you can get steamed oysters. In fact, the clubhouse and restaurant are more reminiscent of an upscale, daily-fee course. Look for the full review coming soon.
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