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Long Island Public Golf

 Kay_Jay ·  
Kay_JayKay_Jay NYC/NJ 640WRX Points: 61Handicap: 11Members Posts: 640
Joined:  edited Aug 28, 2018 in Mid-Atlantic #1
Since I moved back to NYC, I've been trying to play different courses by booking through Tee Off and GolfNow. But, I've finally swapped out and got my NYS license so I think I may have better access and rates for some courses. Looking for recommendations, but to make it easier, I found a list of courses (eliminated 9 hole courses). Appreciate the feedback.



Share your Top 10. (1. Bethpage Black, ...)

Share your Worst 5.





NASSAU
  • Bethpage - Black **
  • Bethpage - Blue **
  • Bethpage - Green **
  • Bethpage - Red **
  • Bethpage - Yellow **
  • Eisenhower Park - Blue
  • Eisenhower Park - Red
  • Eisenhower Park - White
  • Harbor Links **
  • Lido Golf Club **
  • Oyster Bay GC
  • The Golf Club at Middle Bay **


SUFFOLK
  • Bergen Point
  • Brentwood Country Club
  • Calverton Links
  • Cedars Golf Club
  • Cherry Creek
  • Crab Meadow **
  • Great Rock
  • Holbrook Country Club
  • Indian Island CC
  • Island's End
  • Middle Island CC
  • Mill Pond
  • Montauk Downs State Park
  • Pine Hills
  • Pine Ridge **
  • Rock Hill
  • Smithtown Landing **
  • Spring Lake
  • Stonebridge Golf Links **
  • Sunken Meadow **
  • Swan Lake
  • The Vineyards GC
  • Timber Point **
  • West Sayville
  • Willow Creek **
  • Wind Watch **


EDIT: I didn't want to make the post more complicated, but maybe it will help...but I've indicated (**) the courses I have played already. I'm curious to see if there are any left that I should check out. Based on the feedback below, good to know I've knocked out some of the better tracks. In terms of layout, I'm open for anything, just want a solid course with good conditions. Not as concerned with pace of play or distance as there may be some instances where I'll spend a few days out east.
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  • shanxshanx  865WRX Points: 222Members Posts: 865
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    Pine Hills is my standby, it's 20 mins way from me and is easy to get out on most weekend afternoons. Always in good shape, can get around relatively quickly, has some tough holes. Clubhouse restaurant is pretty good too.



    Cherry Creek is OK, kinda farther out East. It's got a hokey Par 6 18th hole that I always seem to eagle.
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  • msena88msena88  141WRX Points: 42Members Posts: 141
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    Sadly my favorite courses and the courses I actually want to play now have been skewed because of how slow most of my favorites are.
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  • chas521chas521  1172WRX Points: 128Members Posts: 1,172
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    Rock Hill is one of my favorite courses.
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  • Kay_JayKay_Jay NYC/NJ 640WRX Points: 61Handicap: 11Members Posts: 640
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    msena88 wrote:


    Sadly my favorite courses and the courses I actually want to play now have been skewed because of how slow most of my favorites are.




    Removing pace of play (which is important) from the equation, what would you recommend in terms of layout and conditions? I can always take a day off work and play during the week to avoid the weekend crowd.
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  • PC51PC51  88WRX Points: 48Members Posts: 88
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    msena88 wrote:


    Sadly my favorite courses and the courses I actually want to play now have been skewed because of how slow most of my favorites are.




    Removing pace of play (which is important) from the equation, what would you recommend in terms of layout and conditions? I can always take a day off work and play during the week to avoid the weekend crowd.




    Depends on the type of layout you enjoy. There is a great deal of diversity within the list you posted. Do you like long, straight courses where you can hit driver all day? (Cherry Creek Links). Do you like a hazard-heavy course with fast greens? (Willow Creek). Are you a history and architecture guy who'll like a short, quirky course with famous template holes? (Stonebridge).
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  • msena88msena88  141WRX Points: 42Members Posts: 141
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    msena88 wrote:


    Sadly my favorite courses and the courses I actually want to play now have been skewed because of how slow most of my favorites are.




    Removing pace of play (which is important) from the equation, what would you recommend in terms of layout and conditions? I can always take a day off work and play during the week to avoid the weekend crowd.




    I'm admittedly not as well versed in the Suffolk courses so I'll let some of the other guys on here comment there but removing pace of play and being sensitive to commuting time it's hard to argue with the Red and Black at Bethpage especially for the money. The Black speaks for itself obviously but Red is arguably the second best public 18 in Nassau. I'm personally not a huge fan of the Eisenhower courses.



    I'm a bit biased here because I live in Rockville Centre so Middle Bay is a quick drive for me but it's a really solid golf course. Typically as well conditioned as you'll find a public course around here and also a bit of different golf than you typically play around these parts. It's some sort of linksy/parkland blend.



    I've never played Harbor Links but have heard good things about the course itself, rates/pace of play however leave a bad taste in a lot of people's mouths.



    I know this isn't easy to do but I'd work your network a bit and see who you know at some private places on the Island, I'm not talking anything insane like Shinny/Sebonack/National but there are a ton of lesser known private clubs with very good golf. I'm lucky to have a connect at a club in Nassau so I get out pretty regularly there and it's a dream playing 3-3.5 hour rounds with ease.
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  • Kay_JayKay_Jay NYC/NJ 640WRX Points: 61Handicap: 11Members Posts: 640
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    PC51 wrote:


    Depends on the type of layout you enjoy. There is a great deal of diversity within the list you posted. Do you like long, straight courses where you can hit driver all day? (Cherry Creek Links). Do you like a hazard-heavy course with fast greens? (Willow Creek). Are you a history and architecture guy who'll like a short, quirky course with famous template holes? (Stonebridge).




    I honestly don't have a favorite type of track as I just like playing different courses overall. Well maintained and good conditions is really all that matters to me.
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  • PC51PC51  88WRX Points: 48Members Posts: 88
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    PC51 wrote:


    Depends on the type of layout you enjoy. There is a great deal of diversity within the list you posted. Do you like long, straight courses where you can hit driver all day? (Cherry Creek Links). Do you like a hazard-heavy course with fast greens? (Willow Creek). Are you a history and architecture guy who'll like a short, quirky course with famous template holes? (Stonebridge).




    I honestly don't have a favorite type of track as I just like playing different courses overall. Well maintained and good conditions is really all that matters to me.




    I think you'll find good conditions at most courses, though it might be more hit-or-miss at some of the non-Bethpage/Montauk municipal courses. Eisenhower Red is currently experiencing major problems with its greens. Courses like Lido and Timber Point Blue are directly on the water and tend to have some drainage issues.



    I'm not a harsh grader on conditions and can think of only one or two times where I've really been put off by course maintenance. The first time I played one Suffolk course it was absolutely littered with an incredible volume of tremendous unrepaired divots. It was almost hard to fathom how many chunks of grass were gouged out of every fairway. But then when I went back a second time there were none. So it's hard to tell when poor course conditions are a one-off and when they are a trend. Others might view it differently, but I'd say for the most part the vast majority of public 18s are good conditions or better.
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  • Kay_JayKay_Jay NYC/NJ 640WRX Points: 61Handicap: 11Members Posts: 640
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    PC51 wrote:




    I think you'll find good conditions at most courses, though it might be more hit-or-miss at some of the non-Bethpage/Montauk municipal courses. Eisenhower Red is currently experiencing major problems with its greens. Courses like Lido and Timber Point Blue are directly on the water and tend to have some drainage issues.



    I'm not a harsh grader on conditions and can think of only one or two times where I've really been put off by course maintenance. The first time I played one Suffolk course it was absolutely littered with an incredible volume of tremendous unrepaired divots. It was almost hard to fathom how many chunks of grass were gouged out of every fairway. But then when I went back a second time there were none. So it's hard to tell when poor course conditions are a one-off and when they are a trend. Others might view it differently, but I'd say for the most part the vast majority of public 18s are good conditions or better.




    I've played my fair share of public courses all over New Jersey and have experienced some beat up or shaggy greens, sandless bunkers, etc. Good to know that for the most part all of the public tracks on Long Island won't have that issue. With that said, what do you think are some of the better, more interesting courses in terms of layout?
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  • WillMK5WillMK5  438WRX Points: 50Members Posts: 438
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    I live in Long Beach. I like to play the Bethpage courses. I like Middle Bay and played it a ton when it was a private course. I've been disappointed with pace of play there in the afternoons. I should give it a shot during the week.



    I rarely play Lido but plan on making more of an effort this year. I want to support local muni's more. I plan on doing the same with the 3 Eisenhower courses.



    I've played Harbor Links twice. The first time I hated it. Brutally slow. The second time I loved it. We played fast and the course was empty (after a near-washout earlier in the day.) It's a great layout in really good shape. The only problem is price and pace of play.



    I've played a lot of the Suffolk courses, and would play them more if they weren't so far away. I just don't like driving 45 minutes to an hour to play Willow Creek or Great Rock.
    Posted:
  • jmtbkrjmtbkr Palm Beach Gardens 801WRX Points: 100Handicap: 11Members Posts: 801
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    I only play in Suffolk. I’m in Commack and I play either Brentwood or Smithtown Landing at sunrise. Usually in the first group out. Sometimes I’m a single. Done by 8:30!



    I think all the Suffolk muni’s are great. Can’t say a bad thing about any of them. Yeah, it takes a bit to get out there, especially if you live west towards the city. Some are slow playing because the course throws golfers out on the tees, its all about revenue. Rock Hill, Swan Lake are definitely guilty of this.
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  • chas521chas521  1172WRX Points: 128Members Posts: 1,172
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    Haven't played Brentwood in some time. I used to play it weekly because I had a regular game there. Never cared for it that much because the greens weren't cared for that well and they were more like the fairway than greens. Hope it's gotten better. Smithtown Landing has Mike Hebron as the teaching pro there. At one time [maybe even now], he was rated as one of the top 50 teachers in the US.



    I'm in Nassau so some of the Suffolk courses are quite a bit of travel but thy're worth the travel just to experience them at least one time. Personally, I like Rock Hill, Willow Creek and Great Rock. I have a friend that lives near me in Nassau and he likes Sunken Meadow and Pine Hills. I've played Pine Hills and as I recall it has a grass driving range.
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  • jmtbkrjmtbkr Palm Beach Gardens 801WRX Points: 100Handicap: 11Members Posts: 801
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    Brentwood hired a new greenskeeper no long ago and has turned it around! It’s become a hidden gem in the area. Whi would think such a great course would be in the middle of Brentwood? Reminder... its over 100 years old and used to be private up to about 10 or so years ago. I play there once or twice a week.

    Smithtown is weird. Great course, but sometimes you can get a 5+ hr round. Like most mini’s, they push players out and it gets really backed up. That’s why i only play at sunrise, during the week. Same goes for Brentwood. Sunrise.

    My personal fave is Great Rock. Wifey and I buy the multi round package, so it comes out alot less than standard greens fees.

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  • jmtbkrjmtbkr Palm Beach Gardens 801WRX Points: 100Handicap: 11Members Posts: 801
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    Hebron (sr) got indicted ladt year for illegalally taking cash or something. Shame, cause he’s a real sweetheart! Always says hello to me. Known him for years.
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  • Kay_JayKay_Jay NYC/NJ 640WRX Points: 61Handicap: 11Members Posts: 640
    Joined:  edited Apr 27, 2018 #16
    Looks like I've got a bunch to check out. Thanks for the recommendations (Rock Hill, Montauk Downs, Great Rock, Sunken Meadow, Brentwood, Pine Hills and Cherry Creek). Does anyone have any insight on Town of Oyster Bay? Is it public but only to residents of Oyster Bay? I saw that its a Fazio design but have no idea where/how to book a tee time?
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  • WillMK5WillMK5  438WRX Points: 50Members Posts: 438
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    I've played TOB. It's public to everyone, and Town of Oyster Bay Residents get a discount. From what I remember, it's very tight and there were some gimmicky holes. With that said, it was in pretty good shape and is probably worth experiencing at least once.
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  • PC51PC51  88WRX Points: 48Members Posts: 88
    Joined:  edited Apr 27, 2018 #18


    Looks like I've got a bunch to check out. Thanks for the recommendations (Rock Hill, Montauk Downs, Great Rock, Sunken Meadow, Brentwood, Pine Hills and Cherry Creek). Does anyone have any insight on Town of Oyster Bay? Is it public but only to residents of Oyster Bay? I saw that its a Fazio design but have no idea where/how to book a tee time?




    It is public, but you need a special "tee-time membership" to book times, resident or not. You can get on but it's basically walk-up and relatively expensive for non-residents, especially to ride.



    As far as the course itself, I enjoy it a lot, and I think the relative exclusivity to non-residents limits the amount of coverage that it gets. It has some very cool greens with lots of slope. The front nine is tight; and the par-4 fourth is one of the toughest p4s on the Island.



    http://www.golfonlon...ter-bay-gc.html
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  • PC51PC51  88WRX Points: 48Members Posts: 88
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    EDIT: I didn't want to make the post more complicated, but maybe it will help...but I've indicated (**) the courses I have played already. I'm curious to see if there are any left that I should check out. Based on the feedback below, good to know I've knocked out some of the better tracks. In terms of layout, I'm open for anything, just want a solid course with good conditions. Not as concerned with pace of play or distance as there may be some instances where I'll spend a few days out east.




    Just a quick bit of list maintenance...



    Calverton Links closed a few years ago, and Cedars is a small 9-hole course.



    To be honest, every course on that list is worth a play, though I say that as someone who likes to play different places all the time and not just my favorites. There are some that I don't particularly care for, though that's just personal preference. As far as conditions go, make an effort to play The Vineyards. It was private up until 1-2 years ago and is still maintained as such.



    Interesting layouts...I'm a big fan of shorter courses with unique holes, which is why I personally favor Stonebridge, TOB, Great Rock and the now-departed Tallgrass, which was my favorite course. You can say a hole here or there on each is a little gimmicky or quirky, but I'll take a short par-3 with a wacky green over a repetitive procession of straight par-4s. Harbor Links is interesting in that it bears no resemblance to Long Island -- it was built on an old sand mine and some of the holes play on or beside a large bluff. The downside is it's the most expensive public round on LI.
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  • Kay_JayKay_Jay NYC/NJ 640WRX Points: 61Handicap: 11Members Posts: 640
    Joined:  edited Apr 27, 2018 #20
    PC51 wrote:


    Just a quick bit of list maintenance...



    Calverton Links closed a few years ago, and Cedars is a small 9-hole course.



    To be honest, every course on that list is worth a play, though I say that as someone who likes to play different places all the time and not just my favorites. There are some that I don't particularly care for, though that's just personal preference. As far as conditions go, make an effort to play The Vineyards. It was private up until 1-2 years ago and is still maintained as such.



    Interesting layouts...I'm a big fan of shorter courses with unique holes, which is why I personally favor Stonebridge, TOB, Great Rock and the now-departed Tallgrass, which was my favorite course. You can say a hole here or there on each is a little gimmicky or quirky, but I'll take a short par-3 with a wacky green over a repetitive procession of straight par-4s. Harbor Links is interesting in that it bears no resemblance to Long Island -- it was built on an old sand mine and some of the holes play on or beside a large bluff. The downside is it's the most expensive public round on LI.




    Appreciate the feedback. To give you some insight of where I'm coming from. I've played Wind Watch a couple of times strictly on when I find a deal for $50-60. The conditions are good but I find the layout to be repetitive and boring with the exception of the first and 10th holes. I don't think its worth the price point they normally charge. Feel free to share those you don't particularly care for.
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  • duffer987duffer987 Meh... eh Canadian in California 9581WRX Points: 889Handicap: ~8Members Posts: 9,581
    Joined:  edited Aug 27, 2018 #21
    Is Timber Point not in good nick at the moment? They seem to have lots of availability early relative to other courses and wondered if there might be a reason why - apart from golfer's preference.

    We're looking for a morning Labour Day round and I'd be keen on seeing the Blue 9 along with one of the other two. Thanks for any advice image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />
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  • PC51PC51  88WRX Points: 48Members Posts: 88
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    duffer987 wrote:


    Is Timber Point not in good nick at the moment? They seem to have lots of availability early relative to other courses and wondered if there might be a reason why - apart from golfer's preference.

    We're looking for a morning Labour Day round and I'd be keen on seeing the Blue 9 along with one of the other two. Thanks for any advice image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />




    Haven't heard anything. Only county residents can book this far out in advance, and I believe today would be the first day Labor Day tee times are open for purchase. So that might be why a lot is available at the moment.



    Also, make the Red your other 9.
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  • duffer987duffer987 Meh... eh Canadian in California 9581WRX Points: 889Handicap: ~8Members Posts: 9,581
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    PC51 wrote:

    duffer987 wrote:


    Is Timber Point not in good nick at the moment? They seem to have lots of availability early relative to other courses and wondered if there might be a reason why - apart from golfer's preference.

    We're looking for a morning Labour Day round and I'd be keen on seeing the Blue 9 along with one of the other two. Thanks for any advice image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />




    Haven't heard anything. Only county residents can book this far out in advance, and I believe today would be the first day Labor Day tee times are open for purchase. So that might be why a lot is available at the moment.



    Also, make the Red your other 9.




    Gotcha thanks image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />

    Ya the Red/Blue combo was what I was eyeing, I only viewed times (didn't try to book) so that makes sense the locals have dibs, similar to State park courses.

    I'm a big Colt fan, so getting to see what's left of a Colt/Alison course in North America would be neat.
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  • chas521chas521  1172WRX Points: 128Members Posts: 1,172
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    I'm pretty sure that Labor Day is considered as a weekend. AFAIK, nine holes are only in play after 1 PM. Full price [18] are in effect prior to that. Just sayin'.
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  • bspnbspn  136WRX Points: 128Members Posts: 136
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    Now that you have your ID there's no excuse not to play Black as you can book a week in advance via phone and getting to play an iconic major championship course for $65-75 is tough to beat. With that said, I actually prefer Red as it is still a championship-quality course in fantastic condition but IMO it is a lot more playable than Black when you're not striping it (although #1 on Red remains one of the hardest opening holes I've ever played).
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  • duffer987duffer987 Meh... eh Canadian in California 9581WRX Points: 889Handicap: ~8Members Posts: 9,581
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    duffer987 wrote:

    PC51 wrote:

    duffer987 wrote:


    Is Timber Point not in good nick at the moment? They seem to have lots of availability early relative to other courses and wondered if there might be a reason why - apart from golfer's preference.

    We're looking for a morning Labour Day round and I'd be keen on seeing the Blue 9 along with one of the other two. Thanks for any advice image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />




    Haven't heard anything. Only county residents can book this far out in advance, and I believe today would be the first day Labor Day tee times are open for purchase. So that might be why a lot is available at the moment.



    Also, make the Red your other 9.




    Gotcha thanks image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />

    Ya the Red/Blue combo was what I was eyeing, I only viewed times (didn't try to book) so that makes sense the locals have dibs, similar to State park courses.

    I'm a big Colt fan, so getting to see what's left of a Colt/Alison course in North America would be neat.


    Ended up with a 7am time after all! Looking forward to it, with Yale, Montauk, Black, Timber Point as our weekend lineup. Hopefully we don't here the lightning sirens at all, but will put up with the rain when it comes.
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  • duffer987duffer987 Meh... eh Canadian in California 9581WRX Points: 889Handicap: ~8Members Posts: 9,581
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    Just wanted to say thanks to the folks in the Mid-Atlantic forum for the good threads with lots of info, our weekend worked out great.

    Black was exactly what I expected it to be: both good and bad.

    Montauk Downs sure sits on a great piece of property and has some interesting holes.

    Timber Point's Blue nine is fantastic. Lido, Gibraltar, and the rest of them were loads of fun to play. Red wasn't bad either. Would be very happy to have that as my local course.



    Unfortunately for those 3, they came after we played two rounds at The Course at Yale. Which is now my favorite North American course, not situated within a mile of a large body of water.

    Shaggy around the edges and undergoing some maintenance, but if it had firm turf, I'd think I was back playing a heathland course in the UK. It specifically reminded me a fair bit of St. George's Hill, which is about as big a compliment I can pay. If I lived with a few hours of it, I'd be jumping all over their 15 round pack.
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  • Kay_JayKay_Jay NYC/NJ 640WRX Points: 61Handicap: 11Members Posts: 640
    Joined:  edited Jun 10, 2019 #28

    Just played a Sunday twilight at Town of Oyster Bay and finished 18 holes in just under 4 hours. The course was empty and I didn't think it was possible to play that fast in Long Island. Granted its not as nice as Bethpage, I enjoyed the drastic change in layout from the narrow holes to the crazy undulating greens. The course conditions can be improved overall but for me the greens and bunkers were in great shape, which is really all I care about. Anyone know how it is on weekend mornings? I'm thinking it may be too good to be true and I just got lucky with nobody there.

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    Post edited by Kay_Jay on
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  • WillMK5WillMK5  438WRX Points: 50Members Posts: 438
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    On -, @Redstorm2011 said:

    Just played a Sunday twilight at Town of Oyster Bay and finished 18 holes in just under 4 hours. The course was empty and I didn't think it was possible to play that fast in Long Island. Granted its not as nice as Bethpage, I enjoyed the drastic change in layout from the narrow holes to the crazy undulating greens. The course conditions can be improved overall but for me the greens and bunkers were in great shape, which is really all I care about. Anyone know how it is on weekend mornings? I'm thinking it may be too good to be true and I just got lucky with nobody there.

    I played it back in April on a Saturday morning, around 8am and was able to play in just over four hours.

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  • Scottyguy68Scottyguy68  369WRX Points: 65Members Posts: 369
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    I spent some time on Long Island for a internship at the PGA Champ. I thought the holes along the water at Timber Point were great. Kind of made up for the rest of the course being mediocre. Also played Black right after the championship (Tuesday) and Nissequogue golf club and both were fantastic experiences.

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  • naromgergnaromgerg  37WRX Points: 14Members Posts: 37
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    Top 5:
    Bethpage Black
    Montauk Downs
    Bethpage Red
    Pine Hills CC
    Cherry Creek Woods
    Rock Hill is good too

    Worst:
    West Sayville

    Indian Island could probably make both of these lists honestly. Good price and good course when it's in good condition.

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    • Cleveland RTX 4 54* w/ DG S400
    • Cleveland RTX 3 58* w/ DG S400
    • Putter - Odyssey Hot Pro 2.0
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