A pretty little golf course in the city

A green on the top of a hill in my Syracuse neighborhood of Eastwood.

A green on the top of a hill in my Syracuse city neighborhood of Eastwood. That white spot in the background is the Carrier Dome.

When my wonderful daughter Elisabeth and her terrific boyfriend George and I decided it was time for some Sunday golf, I suggested the little city golf course that’s just two miles from our house in our Eastwood neighborhood.

They’d already been to Sunnycrest’s sister nine-hole, par-three course, Burnet Park, so they were eager to try out the layout that lies on the hill next to Henninger High School.

The price sure is right at $6 per golfer. I took my push cart out of the trunk, and George pulled the pull cart he spied at somebody’s curb and did a great job reclaiming for Elisabeth. He proclaimed that later he’d be painting her wheel hubs pink. He carried her bags. Truth be known, in a pinch, these par-three holes could probably be navigated carrying just a putter, wedge, nine and seven. But if you’ve got a cart, why not?

The lone guy working in the brick building told me we’d pretty much have the course to ourself. “Two others out there,” he said.

No rush. We all agreed we like that.

There were some hills to navigate, from tee to green, and between holes.

Somehow it seemed that all of them were going up.

The green is  is way up there.

The green is is way up there.

We all hit some good shots. In fact, I hit a lot of good shots from the tee, I thought, although my wise daughter asked me why sometimes they went to the left and sometimes they went to the right. I told her that it would be far less fun if I knew exactly where they were going every time. But I hardly believed that.

Elisabeth on the third tee.

Elisabeth on the third tee.

Elisabeth hit her tee shot on the green several holes.

She was consistent from the tee, even though she said she didn’t much like using the hybrid club that she used on several of the holes. It certainly got the ball up in the air and that 100 or so yards to the green.

In fact, I thought on this day, she hit it better than the driver, which she pulled out on the couple of holes that were longer than 125 yards.

George follows through on the third tee.

George follows through on the third tee.

George chips to the green.

George chips to the green.

George had a bit of trouble containing his power, going long on a lot of his tee shots, even with his wedge.

Is it just the explosiveness of youth? That could be.

It also could be explained by the fact that last year, George misplaced his wedge, and this season he has a new one in his bag. It may carry more distance than the rest of his clubs, you know.

I put at the third green.  (Photo by Elisabeth Bialczak)

I putt at the third green. (Photo by Elisabeth Bialczak)

I left three puts on the lip of the hole, George noted.

That surprised me. I always rather hit a putt a little harder rather than a little two easy. It can’t go in if it doesn’t get there is one of the truest cliches in golf.

Elisabeth lines up her putt.

Elisabeth lines up her putt.

Elisabeth scuffed the putter behind the ball a couple of times. She had declared that her putter was too short, so she was using George’s longer club.

I advised her to choke up an inch, but still … Maybe her dad knows what store to get her a gift card do so she can pick out a new putter this Christmas.

Just thinking in public.

A sunny Sunday at Sunnycrest Golf Course.

A sunny Sunday at Sunnycrest Golf Course.

When we finished, Elisabeth added up the scores before they headed back to George’s in Baldwinsville. Ellie B aka Dogamous Pyle had jumped up on them both enough before the round. Anyway, I had shot 38, which made me very happy. Elisabeth came in in the 40s, nipping George by two shots.

We talked about the weekend prior, when they both ran the 3K at the Boilermaker in Utica. Elisabeth said she thought she’s beaten George then, too, because she finished so much earlier than he did. But when they got their official times, it turns out he ran two seconds faster than she did, but had passed the starting line way later than her.

“If I had known that, I would have run two seconds faster,” my competitive daughter said.

George laughed.

“You should have. You were training and I wasn’t,” he said.

They were happy, too. Our Sunday round was fun all around.

Do you play golf with a parent or a child, and what makes it the most memorable if you do? What’s the best nine-hole score you’ve shot, and why do you think you were at your best that day? Would you be so competitive that you’d have to beat your significant other in every event, and why do you think you’re that way?

31 thoughts on “A pretty little golf course in the city

  1. I love it when you have your daughter and her boyfriend in your posts, Mark! I am always glad that you have such a close relationship. That speaks ‘volumes’ about you, my dear friend! You have humor and fun wherever you go! I enjoyed this a lot. I like miniature golf or Putt Putt. I also have been known to golf, but I am not very good, kind of a waste of money on me! I lost a good boyfriend, who worked at Honda in Marysville, Ohio, who was named Mark and his last name started with “B!” He had two children and they liked me a lot, but we did not last, since he did love to golf a Lot and he did not seem to like going to movies and other things I liked to do. I let him break up with me, a few years back… Thanks for the fun on the course, silly teasings and all!


    • Sounds like you two just didn’t have enough in common, Robin. Too bad. Thanks for the kind words about my golfing stories with Elisabeth and George! They are fun kids to hang out with no matter what we do, thankfully.


  2. Think Think Think Think……. gold comments…… egads they elude me. But I love that you got to spend time with your wonderful daughter and her terrific boyfriend. I get that part! πŸ˜‰


  3. Sounds like a fun way to spend a Sunday! This will come to no shock to you but I’m too loud for golf. I once was, however, the beverage girl who gave my dad a lift in the cart while he played golf and drank beer. Shocker.


  4. What a beautiful story! I had no doubt that Elisabeth golfs like her dad. πŸ™‚ You always make it sound like such fun, you make me want to take it up!

    As an aside, I thought about you yesterday when I got behind a new Florida license plate (or maybe it’s not new, but I just never noticed it before) that said Florida is the golf capital of the world! I never knew that either! Now you’ve just got to pack up Karen and Ellie B and come down for a visit to one of these 1,200 courses here. πŸ™‚ {But wait ’til it gets cooler.} I’ll leave the light on for you. πŸ˜€


    • Winter time golf in Florida… Hmm. Some year, Rachel. Leave the light on, please! You should take up golf, considering you live in the capital. If you have a little success, it will draw you back for more. πŸ™‚


  5. Sounds like it was a great day! … I’m not even a duffer, but I have fond memories of playing the 9-hole par 3s at Burnet Park and Pope’s Grove way back when. Believe it or not, 9 holes at Burnet Park used to cost a whopping 25 cents.


  6. Mark, you are a fabulous cheerleader for All Things Syracuse! I took some golf lessons a few years ago, and it was a disaster…I’m a leftie, and that kind of messed things up. The game is way too slow for me, too. I would love to zip around on a golf cart, though, and harass some old guys’ as they play. Beware! (but you are not old–you don’t ride tour buses to Cracker Barrel.) πŸ™‚


  7. Great times Mark. It is so delightful to share a day like that with loved ones. Perhaps I’ll put on my bathing suit and go a round. Ha!


  8. what a fun family day, both of your golfer buddies embraced the spirit and it sounds like there were lots of great comments, and teases, and especially lots of love all around. i think the gift card is a great idea, and how clever of george to rescue the cart, they sound like a great couple and what a great daughter she is. i used to go hit balls at the range with my father, and later with my son in law, but have never played. it’s on my list and reading all of your golfing posts this year, has made it seem even more fun )


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