A number of years ago, when my kids were younger, my wife and I took the family on a Minnesota golf vacation. The golf, admittedly was more for me since I was alone in wanting to play for three days, but we didn’t have a lot of other activities for the kids to do — and there was much unhappiness. But that has changed. A lot. Now there are Minnesota golf resorts with amenities and activities for the entire family. No longer does golf vacation translate into golf “man-cation” that’s only fun for dad.
Minnesota golf resorts are just simply great vacation destinations. Many of them start with great golf and then surround it with top-notch lodging, excellent fine-dining (and family restaurants), and plenty of attractions on the property or in close proximity. The resorts have figured out that appealing to the entire family gets more people to their resorts for longer stays, and when you satisfy and exceed expectations for everyone in the group (especially the younger people), the chances increase mightily for a return visit.
Here are some great golf courses for kids for a family-friendly golf vacation in Minnesota:
Grand View Lodge in Nisswa, Minn., is a great place for the family. The golf is fit for everyone from the par 35 nine-hole course called The Garden, to the 27 championship holes of The Pines, and 18 more down the road at the recently-renovated Preserve.
Set on the edge of Gull Lake, Grand View Lodge is rife with water activities for the entire family. But if you need to split up, the Kid’s Club (during the Summer) allows parents to leave their children (ages 3-11) in the care of the Kid’s Club staff while they enjoy their own activities. The kids will be anything but bored with activities that include arts and crafts, adventures, and plenty of fun exploring in Minnesota’s lakes and woods.
In addition, there is Kid’s Night Out, which includes Wacky Relay Races Night, Mystery Night, and Waves of Laughter Night. The resort also has babysitting services available for children under the age of three. Oh, and don’t forget The Chocolate Ox candy store, where I bought my brother the biggest jawbreaker he had ever seen. He might still be eating it.
Just across the water is Madden’s on Gull Lake, where the fun starts with golf and never seems to end. In addition to The Classic and the Pine Beach East and West courses for championship golf, Madden’s has the Social 9, which my young family and I have enjoyed playing.
Madden’s also features the Adventure Cove kids’ program for children ages 4-12, which promises a unique and fun experience for the younger members of your group. Adventure Cove has flexible hours, which is necessary with so many great activities provided. The activities include swimming, beach trips, pontoon rides, marina activities, fishing, field trips, movies, face painting, balloon animals, banana taxi, air hockey, foosball, table tennis, Wii games, board games, card games, prizes, and more. Too much for one trip, so the kids will be wanting to return the following year.
Breezy Point Resort in Pequot Lakes, Minn., has three great golf courses in the Traditional, Whitebirch, and Deacon’s Lodge tracks, but golf is just the beginning at Breezy. There is much more to do after you have hit the links.
The course is set in the middle of the beautiful lakes and woods area of central Minnesota, and it takes full advantage of its locale. The resort’s boat marina provides every kind of watercraft imaginable, such as canoes, kayaks, paddle boats, fishing boats and motors, and hydro bikes, plus a fleet of new pontoons. And the Brainerd Lakes Area offers some of the best professional fishing guides in the world, so the kids are sure to make a haul on beautiful Pelican Lake.
There is also fun to be found on the resort’s four tennis courts located at the Traditional Golf Course, exciting volleyball at the beach at Breezy Point, plus swimming, tanning, horseshoe pits, and a huge grassy area for bocce ball and croquet.
If your group is a little more adventuresome, check out the multi-purpose Paul Bunyan Trail, which is paved for 50 miles and connects Brainerd to Bemidji. The Breezy Point Four Seasons Trail provides year-round fun that includes walking, biking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. It is a two-mile loop through various gorgeous terrains.
This just scratches the surface when it comes to great family golf resorts in Minnesota. Check them all out and sign your crew up for your own customized summer trip. Turn your golf man-cation into a Minnesota resort staycation, and you will make family memories for a lifetime.
Explore Minnesota Golf Alliance is a non-profit membership organization whose mission is to raise awareness of Minnesota golf courses and resorts as international travel destinations. Our member facilities feature award-winning, championship golf courses and are geographically disbursed across the great state of Minnesota. The combination of exceptional quality and outstanding value make Minnesota one of the best golf destinations in the United States.