GAM

GOLF ASSOCIATION OF MICHIGAN

COURSE OF THE WEEK: Leslie Park Offers a Timeless Design

Despite being centered in the sixth largest city in Michigan, Leslie Park Golf Course does not have the feel of an inter-city golf course. Nature, solitude, and the classic “Northern Michigan” experience is what awaits you on this Ann Arbor course.

Built in the 1960s by E. Lawrence Packard, Leslie Park has a classic design that according to the course Director of Golf Doug Kelly is “timeless.” Packard took a great piece of property and inter-mixed large welcoming greens with nature, elements, and time. Prior to designing Leslie Park, Packard worked on other notable courses in Illinois and Wisconsin. Today, Leslie Park is looked on as one of Packard’s best works.

Throughout the first half of the 20th century, the land in which Leslie Park Golf Course now sits was Dr. Eugene Leslie’s farm, orchard, and experimental outdoor laboratory. As a professor at the University of Michigan, “Dr. Leslie valued sharing his knowledge and activities,” said Kelly. “When age caught up to him, Dr. Leslie wanted to ensure that this beautiful piece of land was engulfed by the rapidly changing growth of Ann Arbor in the 60s, so he “donated” the land to the City for the soul purpose of recreation. With its vast topography, natural wetlands, flowing creeks and proximity to the City, a golf course was its first best-use destiny.”

The course stayed as designed by Packard until the early 90s. In 1995, Arthur Hills was hired to renovate 5 of the holes to make this classic course just a little more challenging. It is with the help of that renovation that golfers at Leslie Park have such a difficult time selecting their favorite hole. “Leslie Park is lucky enough to have a half-dozen holes that golfers would call the best,” says Kelly. “Each dedication is dependent the day, the wind and the time of year. It is what makes Leslie Park timeless. Holes 4, 5, 9, 11, 14, 17 are the over-whelming favorites.”

Leslie Park is a Golf Digest 4.5 Star rated facility, and since its creation Leslie Park has won both Ann Arbor’s and Washtenaw County’s Favorite/Best Golf Course more than any other course in the area. Gear Patrol has also listed Leslie Park as one of the Top 20 Municipal Courses in the Country. According to Kelly, the highpoint of Leslie Park’s accomplishments came in 2009, when Golf Digest named it The Best Municipal Golf Course in Michigan. This title remains with the course yet today.”

In addition to being a great course for the average golfer, Leslie Park has been a host course for qualifiers for the LPGA for the last few seasons. The course offers four sets of tees ranging from 4,906 yards up to 6,611 yards. The full tee information is:

 

Tee

Yardage

Rating

Slope

Black

6,611

72.0

129

Blue

6,222

70.3

125

White

5,805

68.1

123

Gold

4,906

69.4

121

 
Leslie Park offers multiple specials throughout the week, including an “Early Bird Special” from 7:21 -7:59 am, and a new “Super-Twilight Family Special”. In addition to specials, Leslie Park has multiple season pass options to fit any golfing budget. Visit the course website today to find out more about the specials and different season pass option.
 

To book your next tee time at Leslie Park Golf Course, call the Pro Shop at 734-794-6245 or go online to http://www.a2gov.org/departments/Parks-Recreation/parks-places/leslie-park/Pages/default.aspx  

        Sal LaFata, Member Services Associate

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