Winter Activities Available At Mass Golf Member Clubs - MASSGOLF

How To Enjoy Golf Courses Near You During The Offseason

It’s a sentiment heard far and wide this time of year: “I hope there are warmer days ahead.”

Those who believe in the prognostication of a renown groundhog were disappointed last week when Punxsutawney Phil predicted six more weeks of winter.

But several golf clubs throughout Massachusetts have long dealt with this reality and have adapted their clubs and grounds to be suited for winter activities.

So while we’re all hoping for golf to return sooner rather than later, here are some golf course activities that can keep you busy during this time. And trust us, we’ll get to golf in the fresh air soon.


BOWLING

One of the most friendly-family sports (along with golf, of course) is available inside the brick clubhouse at South Shore Country Club in Hingham.

Known simply as ‘The Alley’, this 10-lane candlepin bowling facility offers the perfect place those who want to trade in knocking down putts for knocking down pins. For those unfamiliar with Candlepin, the balls are about half the size of a 10-pin ball, the pins are straighter and narrower and there are no holes to grip. However, you do get an extra throw per turn.

South Shore Country Club also has golf simulators for members and the general public, but we’ll get to those later.

The Alley at South Shore Country Club (South Shore Country Club)

LOCATION: South Shore Country Club, 274 South St., Hingham, MA, 02043

Bonus Fact: Worcester Country Club, the site of the first Ryder Cup in 1927, also has a Candlepin bowling alley in the basement of its clubhouse.

SKIING & snowshoeing

Unlike the golf season, it’s OK to choose your own route on the course during the winter months.

Skiing and snowshoeing is abundant all across the state’s golf courses thanks to the well-groomed terrain. Among the most popular locations for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing is the Ski Track located at Leo J Martin Golf Course in Weston. The ski facility opened in 1974 and has over 9 miles of trails. This includes a 1.2-kilometer (0.6 mile) ski loop that is lit up at night to allow for evening skiing. Lessons and equipment rentals are also on site.

“Season-wise they’re complimentary,” said Mark Jacobson, General Manager of Weston Ski Track. “Golf ends around Thanksgiving around when we ramp up for skiing.”

And even though snow has been melting over the past week, the facility makes its own snow. Jacobson said a project is being finalized to update the irrigation system with an underground pipe to allow to water to keep the course hydrated during golf season and make snow in the winter.

Weston Ski Track at Leo J Martin Golf Course (Courtesy Photo)

Just down the road is Brookline Golf Course, which also offers snowshoeing and skiing opportunities. Through the trees you might even get a glimpse next door at The Country Club, which will host the 2022 U.S. Open in June. Tewksbury Country Club up north has also promoted its course for skiing and snowshoeing use.

But you don’t just have to be in the Boston area to break out the skis. Further west, places like Cherry Hill Golf Course (Amherst), Gardner Municipal Golf Course, and Northfield Golf Club have trails that are often used for cross-country skiing and even snowmobiles (where permitted).

Wherever you go, make sure you stick to safe areas and bring the proper equipment and clothing.

While it may not be golf or patio season, that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the course!

With all the recent snow, the conditions are perfect for snowshoeing or cross country skiing on the grounds.

LOCATIONS: 

Leo J Martin Ski Track: 190 Park Rd, Weston, MA 02493

Brookline Golf Course (Robert T. Lynch Municipal Golf Course): 1281 W Roxbury Pkwy, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

Cherry Hill Golf Course: 323 Montague Rd, Amherst, MA 01002

Gardner Municipal Golf Course: 152 Eaton St, Gardner, MA 01440

Northfield Golf Club: 31 Holton St, Northfield, MA 01360

CURLING

Speaking of the Olympics, curling is the one sport that time and again piques our interest during the Winter Games every four years. In fact, some have even called it golf on ice.

The Country Club has its own facility with long sheets of ice used for the obscure winter game of throwing stones toward icy bull’s eyes (called the house). While the rink is traditionally reserved for members and local school teams, there are some ways for the public to compete. Social groups like the Canadian Club of Boston have had access to The Country Club’s facility. Not Canadian? No problem, as this group is open to members of all nations.

There’s a historic link between golf and curling in the Boston area. Brae Burn Country Club hosted curling on its pond as early as 1898. TCC also used to host area clubs for a summer four-ball tournament and would encourage participants to join them during curling season.

There are also curling-specific facilities in locations such as Wayland, Bridgewater, Falmouth and Petersham. However, none are located on golf courses.

Curling at The Country Club in Brookline (Courtesy Photo)

Location: The Country Club, 191 Clyde St. Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

GOLF SIMULATORS

And finally, it’s no secret by now that you can still practice your golf swing year-round. Golf simulators have popped up all over the Commonwealth to allow players to practice indoors and study the analytics of their swing. It also allows you to play 18 holes in roughly an hour.

The Links at Mass Golf in Norton opened two Golfzon Simulators about two years ago, allowing golfers to practice on some of the most famed courses, including Pebble Beach, Bethpage Black, and the Old Course at St Andrews.

In addition to the many independent facilities that have simulators, many golf courses have installed them as well. Check with your local club, and you might be able to get a jump on your friends when the spring begins. You can always invite them to come along, too.

GolfZon Simulator at The Links at Mass Golf (Mass Golf)

Location: The Links At Mass Golf, 300 W Main St. Norton, MA 02766