Initial ThoughtsValley Green Golf Course, located in Etters, PA (between York and Harrisburg) proved to be a fun track through the rolling hills of Central Pennsylvania. It was a good overall experience with excellent conditions and quick greens. A friendly staff and great menu in their clubhouse restaurant, HoganGÇÖs, punctuated the outing.
Date PlayedFriday, September 29th, 2006
Value - 6.5Valley Green Golf Course has many different price breaks based on the day of the week and your situation. While it can be confusing to know exactly which bill to pull out of the wallet, it should be viewed as a good thing. With different rates for Junior golfers, Senior golfers, and people playing after 2pm all based on the day of the week, you clearly see that their aim is to provide an affordable experience. No matter what category you are in, youGÇÖll never feel like theyGÇÖre cleaning you out. ItGÇÖs $40 on the weekend with a cart, and $30 during the week. They list their complete rates on their website. The food cart and clubhouse prices were also reasonable.
Pace of Play - 3.0The one and only disappointment that I experienced at Valley Green was the speed at which we moved. The first 9 holes took over 2 -+ hours to complete. I know this is one of those things that can vary from day-to-day and on the group you are directly behind, but it was definitely sluggish. My group had to wait on almost every 2nd shot, and on every par 3, sometimes for a considerable amount of time.
While on the course, we did hear some rumors explaining why. Apparently a group had gone out that morning and was cut off from the beer cart by the 9th hole. Word around the course was that there were 210 beers consumed by 20 men in the first 9 holes. You do that the math on that one- impressive.
Course/Maintenance - 6.0Valley Green plays at 6,323 yards from the back tees, making it a rather short course. The back 9 plays significantly longer than the front 9. You start out with two par 4GÇÖs that would have Tiger hitting 5 Wood to drive the green. Aside from that, I thought the course was great. Uphill shots, downhill shots, doglegs in each direction, and fair risks and rewards for going for shots and laying up.
As far as maintenance goes, the course was in fantastic shape. The greens were quick and firm, while still fair. They held good shots into the green and played very quick once putting. The fairways and tee boxes were well maintained and free of excessive divots. Fall is a beautiful time of year to play golf and this course showed off what fall golf in PA can be all about. I'd imagine in a couple weeks, when the leaves change, it will be pristine. Other little things that stood out were that the bunkers were soft and filled. After a night of some rain, it showed effort by the course to make them the best they could be.
Hospitality - 7.5The Valley Green staff was fantastic. The beer guy was good. The clubhouse guy was good. The golf pro came out and chatted with us for several minutes. Overall, a great example of hospitality. Sure, you arenGÇÖt going to get high end club treatment at Valley Green, but you arenGÇÖt going to have to shell out a tip for someone picking your clubs up 2 times either.
Scenery - 7.0The course is tucked among the rolling hills of Central Pennsylvania, just a couple of turns off Interstate 83. There are trees, there is water, and they do a really good job hiding everything else. Even with the course crossing a small road, you donGÇÖt hear traffic or anything else surrounding. I didnGÇÖt see any animals running around the course, but prints showed their presence. I wouldnGÇÖt call it gorgeous, but itGÇÖs definitely cute.
Overall - 6.7 (not an average)I had a positive overall experience playing Valley Green Golf Club. I wouldnGÇÖt say it is worth a long trip, but certainly from Harrisburg or York would make sense. I enjoyed my day on the course and off. I actually attended a wedding reception at the course (the ultimate reason I was in the area) and they did a great job hosting that as well.
While the course is clearly no Palmer or Nicklaus design, it is worth the money for an enjoyable day out.
[ comments ]
Interesting, I'd rate the course more of a 3 or 4 on maintenance, when I played last season there were quite a few large dirt patches in the middle of the fairways and the tee boxes were in pretty rough shape. From what I experienced it seemed debatable as to whether or not they actually watered the grass. The new clubhouse was nice but after playing I felt like I wished they had invested the clubhouse money into the course.
David B says:
Josh may have had a less than steller experience. I would suggest trying the course again. I've played 3-4 times and always had a great experience.
I live 4 blocks from this course and drive past it as much as I can. This isn't a golf course in any classic sence. Greedy owners built homes on the front 9 years ago and you have to put up with property owners who didn't realize they bought homes within a golf course. Front 9 totaly sucks. The back resembles a normal course but you finish on a par 3. The only course in the United States that has this unless you are playing on a pitch and putt. An overpriced underachiever.
Heavenly Golf (6)
10.0 - 9.5 World Class
9.4 - 8.5 Awesome
8.4 - 7.5 Very good
7.4 - 6.5 Above Average
6.4 - 4.5 Solid
4.4 - 3.5 Below Average
3.4 - 2.5 Save Your Money
2.4 - 0.0 Pay NOT to go