It's been a minute since I swung a golf club. I used to play all the time with my dad in Maryland, and then I played socially through my 20's. After the kids came along, I gave up the sport and sold my clubs. Now after 20 years in retirement, I am back out on the course. It started with an invitation to visit Sunday River in Maine and turned into our family checking out Sunday River Golf Club
Ranked in the top 100 courses you can play in the US by Golf Magazine and the #1 golf course in Maine, this was a great place to get back into golf. The course is lush and tucked into a gorgeous corner of Maine.
Checking Out Sunday River Video
Take a look at the summer fun at Sunday River
Details About Sunday River Golf Club
Designed by famed golf-course architect Robert Trent Jones Jr, the course is one of the prettiest I've ever played. Overlooking the Sunday River Valley, the course gives visitors a view of the Mahoosuc range. There are plenty of hills to contend with, and I recommend taking a cart to enjoy the landscape (especially if you have young players with you).
The semi-private, par 72 course has a slope rating womens’ 74.5/144. It plays 5,006 yards from the lady’s tees and 7130 from the black tees. On our visit, we only played the front 9 (I didn't want to push the full 18 on my 11 year-old daughter).
There's plenty of parking near the log-built clubhouse. Inside you'll find a restaurant and bar and a full pro shop. Outside there's a grass driving range, and putting green.
Getting lessons is key when you are learning a new sport. We checked in with Jerry Roman, PGA Head Golf Professional, and the golf director at Sunday River.
My daughter has never played; Jerry patiently gave her some basic instruction. Jerry and I chatted a bit about getting kids into golf. He advised that we let her play around with the clubs. She got the feel of the grip and had a few times where she really connected with the ball.
As for the adults, Jerry didn't mess with our (ugly) swings too much. He gave us alignment tips and a few basic pointers. He was there to make sure we had fun and to get us going.
Planning your Trip to Sunday River Golf Club
The course is open for public play from late May through late October. On our stay, we bunked up at the Sunday River Grand Summit (about a 5 minute drive from the golf course). The resort offers stay and play packages that can be combined with golf at Sugarloaf or Belgrade Lakes.
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Since golf can be expensive, I love these Insider Deals for Sunday River Golf
- Maine residents play for $59 on Wednesdays
- New Hampshire residents play for $59 on Tuesdays
- Season Passholders save 20% on greens fees every day.
The course is in great condition (no water shortage here) and offers plenty of challenges. Our family had a blast out there and we 100% plan on playing more golf in the future.
Sunday River Golf Club House
Before we hit the links, I shopped for a new golf shirt (it had been a while!) golf gloves and balls. Note: dress code requires collared shirts (they let my daughter slide). For ideas on what to wear when golfing, check out this post. The shop was well stocked and had clubs for rent. The club house is open, airy and clean.
After we played 9, we found an outdoor table off the club house deck. We overlooked the putting green as we sipped Arnold Palmers and enjoyed our lunch.
To my delight, the food was some of our favorite of the trip. I had the Maine Lobster Roll ($20) with shaved lettuce on a brioche bun. The lobster was FANTASTIC and light on the mayo. It was the perfect way to end a great day of golf. My daughter had the Turkey Cubano ($14) on a French baguette. We both swapped chips for side salads and were thrilled with our meals.
Getting to Sunday River Golf Club
Sunday River Golf is located at 18 Championship Drive, Newry, ME 04261. It's about 90 minutes from Portland and three hours from Boston.
From NYC it's 6+ hours. My advice? Plan a 4-day weekend in the summer and explore the Mahoosuc range and escape the heart on your next vacation.
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This Checking Out Sunday River Golf Club feature is not sponsored. Our lesson was hosted, we paid for lunch and equipment.