North Liberty was honored with a Playful City USA designation for the sixth time in 2017. This national recognition program honors cities and towns across the country for making their cities more playable. This award credits the cities for putting the needs of families first so kids can learn, grow and develop important life skills, and for transforming ordinary places into useful play areas. Congratulations to North Liberty, IA. Sounds like the type of town Always Time for 9 would find a nice, friendly 9-hole golf course. Here is what we found
A nice, friendly 9-hole golf course in Quail Creek Golf Course.
Hole #1 is a par 5 of 534 yards (white) that you should have no issue finding the fairway with your drive. This dogleg left will require a 2nd or 3rd shot to clear the creek that runs through many of the holes on this course. The creek continues to bisect Hole #2 as your tee shot needs to catch some air and avoid the trees to the right. The long, narrow, undulating green may also create a challenge as you try to post a birdie here.
As I played Hole #3, I saw a pattern starting to emerge – generous fairways; tree trouble left and right; and large, irregular-shaped, undulating greens. Confused at Hole #4? The teeing area is shared by both holes #2 and #4 but the signage is excellent. You should be able to launch your tee shot at the appropriate hole. It’s déjà vu all over again (as Yogi would say) as another large, undulating, irregular-shaped green greets your approach shot at number four.
That brings us to the 562 yard dogleg left fifth hole. The reason for the prior italic is that I am an idiot! I had an excellent drive; cleared the pesky creek again with my second; and hit a good third shot. Now I’m thinking, why am I still short of the green? Either this is the longest par 4 (remember 562 yards) or I haven’t compensated for the Colorado altitude change. Of course, it was neither…it’s a par 5, dummy! I was looking at the handicap rating (4) but you would think the 562 yards would have given me a clue!
Hole #6 is the number one handicap and a 428 par 4. After your drive you have a risk/reward shot to ponder. The creek runs along the front of the green and the farther right it goes the creek turns into a small pond. So lay up, or try to carry the creek and somehow have your shot hold the green? Call me Nancy, but today I laid up and smartly recorded a par. Hole #7 is a 161 yard par 3 over water to another long, narrow green. Congratulations if you have recorded par or better for this excellent stretch of holes (5 – 7)!
More open fairway awaits you at Hole #8, a par 4 with a slight bend to the left. Hole #9 – 1) Need to thread your tee shot through the trees (see photo below) √; 2) need to clear the large pond with your second shot (see opening photo) √; 3) chip onto green √; 10′ putt for par (3 out 4 isn’t bad).
Birdie: The fairways and greens were in very good shape today and the large mature trees added to the nice visual experience of the course (unless you were playing out of them most of the day). There were a good variety of hole configurations and enough hazards to keep you focused. My only complaint is that I had a difficult time finding the 100, 150, and 200 yard stakes or markers. Maybe you need to be in the fairway to locate these! If you find yourself driving along I-80 and needing a place to stop and stretch your legs, stop off in Playful City USA and visit my friend Trevor at Quail Creek.
700 Clubhouse Rd., North Liberty, IA 52317; 319-626-2281; www.quailcreekiowa.com