There are both advantages and disadvantages to golfing at The Orchards. Being an amateur golfer, I use the course to work on my accuracy and my short game. Aside from the course play length being, on average, about two hours there's the obvious down side being the wait times when there are either leagues going on or too many tee times made throughout an hour.
Going to the course as a walk on when there are plenty of golfers is actually a disadvantage most of the time. You can sometimes wait for anywhere between 5-45 minutes just to get out onto the course with a group of people you don't know.
The only thing that can make the course better would be, perhaps, an expansion or the introduction of a water hazard or two throughout.
Orchards is where I learned how to golf, so this quaint par-three course will always hold a special place in my heart.
I've been using this casual, relaxed and friendly course for going on seven years, as long as I've been with my fiance and visiting his family in CT.
I remember shanking balls about 30 yards off the first tee, my hands shaking and cheeks blushing, as I worried about my slow play and poor shots. Now I walk up to the box and bomb my four iron right to the edge of the dog leg left, pitch it up onto the fringe of the green with my nine, and, on a good day, make a one putt in for par.
Orchards is well maintained and has a great lay out for a public course. It costs a mere $13 for a round of nine holes, which is quite reasonable for the condition of the course. It is walk only, there are never any officials bothering you once you're off and, for your golfing enjoyment, there are water fountains and outhouses here and there.
There is no driving range (you aren't really going to need driver, spare a hole or two) but there is a practice green next to the small clubhouse.
Speaking of the club house, it doesn't offer much other than toilets, although they do provide limited snacks and beverage for sale and pull carts for rent.
Orchards is a great place to get in a casual nine, relax and goof around with friends or family, while working on your game.
Sure, they don't offer food or refreshments. Sure, the play can sometimes be a little (err, a lot) slow. Sure, it isn't a fancy course with caddies, food carts, ranges and all the bells and whistles that make an upscale course, well, upscale. But rated as the tiny, towny, public course it is, Orchards easily deserves the "FORE!!!" stars I've given.
Note: If you are a resident of the area, be sure to bring proper ID, as it will garner you a cheaper rate. We've been lying about where I live for years...did I just say that?
I was pleasantly surprised by this course. Almost every hole is a Par 3 and the entire course is only 9 holes. Point is, if your a golf novice like me and just want to get your Tiger on for an hour or two, this course works just fine. It can get crowded on weekends, so be sure to call far in advance for a tee time. My brother beat me pretty badly this past Sunday, but golf is one of the only sports where you can suck and still love it. For a little more skill, try Grassy Hill Country Club down the street.