Links at Lawsonia Golf Course
Lawsonia Golf Course boasts two championship 18-hole courses, the Links and the Woodlands. These two contrasting designs both offer a challenging round amongst historic landmarks and abundant wildlife. The Links Course will make you feel as though you've been transported to the British Isles. Many of the holes replicate famous Scottish and English golf holes, giving it a character that is reminiscent of the golf courses played in the British Open. In order to mimic the open feel of a traditional links course, trees were removed and contours were shaped and molded into the landscape. Just like any links course, the layout is especially tough if the wind is blowing hard. The golf course covers a range of elevation changes providing rolling fairways and multi-tiered, often elevated, greens. More than 90 bunkers are strategically placed throughout, and there is also deep rough to contend with.
|White (W)||72||6494 yards||76.3||131|
|Gold (W)||72||5889 yards||73.6||124|
|Red (W)||71||5078 yards||68.9||117|
|Blue M: 73.0/130||418||431||386||203||487||439||161||339||535||3399||239||510||183||568||154||394||443||383||580||3454||6853|
|White M: 71.5/128||407||422||367||175||475||406||146||322||529||3249||217||482||171||556||139||379||435||363||503||3245||6494|
|Gold M: 68.8/124 W: 73.6/124||348||405||360||165||439||328||140||315||520||3020||162||430||165||489||130||370||293||355||475||2869||5889|
|Red W: 68.9/117||348||295||300||158||439||328||109||249||461||2687||162||278||141||489||124||233||293||264||407||2391||5078|
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Golf Advisor: Top Courses in Wisconsin
Bring your imagination
There's is nothing boring about the Links Course at Lawsonia. Not one thing. Every hole on this Langford/Moreau gem is a game unto itself, and every hole is unique, whether it's the shape of the hole itself, the bunkers or the large greens, which have more angles and slopes than 99 percent of the golf courses you'll ever play. But they all have a purpose and are most interesting. Half the fun is trying to figure out if your putts are uphill or downhill and once you do that, how severe the slope is. Often, you might think you have a slick downhill putt and leave your approach four feet short. I loved everything about this experience, from the starter and opening tee shot to hanging out in the clubhouse afterwards. It's an experience every golfer who comes to Wisconsin should enjoy,
Great course in great setting
Played as a single on a Wednesday mid-day. Starter was great in prepping me for the course. Lots of blind shots, but aim for the 'v' and go. Condition of course was great, grassy fairways, large but tricky greens. Most greens were on mounds, so practice your flop shots. Lots of local knowledge here. My only problem was the 4 groups that let me play through: it's always hard to play well as strangers watch. Great experience.
Course is in great shape. Other than a few groups who had no corse etiquette, it was a great day
Great old course
The design has stood the test of time and modern equipment.
Very fun golf. Would not recommend for beginners or hackers. Not extremely difficult, but you do need to be able to deal with 15 foot deep bunkers and mounds.
Course was showing some wear on the greens and tee boxes, again, mostly do to resort golfers who don't know what they are doing.
First of all this is not a links by any stretch of the imagination and shouldn't be compared to them. This is earthworks and engineering. Think of Seth Raynor. Most of us can't play a Raynor course so this gives us a chance to see what scale and mounding can do for a golf course. This course was very interesting from a design standpoint. Architecture appreciators will enjoy looking at the mounding, bunkering, routing and great use of natural features combined with earthworks. Most greens are elevated. Plenty of large bunkers to protect them. Greens are large with undulations to force players to approach correct section. Most greens have 10 feet or more slopes for misses to force short game accuracy. I found this course to be unique and therefore enjoyable. Serious bombers might not find it to be extremely challenging but it is challenging to all.
The two nines are both great. The back nine is 3 of each type of par. The back nine also opens up so that you can see the whole back nine and out into the distance. The front nine has a feel that each hole is out there almost on its own. I enjoyed both nines but found the stretch from 5-9 to be excellence. All of the par 3s are great, but 7 is all world. The par 5s offer challenge and demand accuracy if you are thinking about going for it in two. The par 4s vary but most demand that you make a decision from the tee as each tee shot has blatant risk/reward options. The shorter the hole, the tighter the lines and more contours in the greens. Can't just bomb it out there without taking the proper line and need two quality shots for birdie.
Most greens are elevated and well protected. There are also a few blind tee shots. You can drive ahead to figure out landing zone. The 2nd and 8th come to mind. There are forced carries if one wants the best position but there are bail outs which force a great 2nd. The architects found a great routing complete with plenty of elevation changes. I found that the elevation changes added to the interest and even varied in how much more club was needed. They also enhanced the walk. I would also encourage that you walk as, being a golden age course, the distance from greens to tees is minimal.
Off the course, there is a restaurant, putting green , range, etc for everything you need. The customer service was great and they are proud of their course.
I must warn you that the only knock would be playing at twilight-it gets crowded. I played in 4.5 hours. I have heard longer. They do offer an all day rate that, if you can, you should take advantage of. A group in front of me was on their third round and averaged less than 4 hours as a foursome for the first two rounds. Beside Pace of play there were heavy rains so the bunker conditions could be iffy in some places. Some turned into no sand while others had an ideal amount. I can only think that this was attributed to the weather as the locals I walked with said that this is not normal.
Another positive is that this is a great value. A classic and unique course is yours to walk for only about $35 at twilight. The aforementioned all day rate is around $110. Considering the green fees at the destinations in this state, this makes for an incredible value.
I wouldn't say you should make a special trip to get here (unless you are an architecture buff, then you will want to see this course from a design appreciation standpoint and that will make you want to play it), but if you are in Wisconsin to go to Sand Valley or Kohler or Erin Hills, the sheer value makes this worth the hour or so drive. If you are actually in the area for any other reason and looking for a round it is a can't miss.
Unique Golf Course
Played the links course. There are a lot of blind shots from the tee and approach, especially on the front nine so it would take a few rounds for me to be comfortable aiming my shot on those. The greens rolled well overall though and there are a lot of tiers and break to them. The sand quality was pretty fine grain and easy to hit out of. I thought it was a great example of a unique and challenging links course. The restaurant had really good food too. I would recommend this course to anyone who enjoys playing a links style course.
Golf Courses of Lawsonia (Links)
The Good: The Links course at Lawsonia is one of the most official "Old School" designs in midwestern public golf. Designed by the great William B. Langford in the 1920's, this track has some of the most challenging green complexes and unique sightlines off the tee that you'll see at any course, anywhere. Design includes an excellent grouping of Par 5's and Par 3's, most notably the #7 Boxcar hole with one of the most severe green fall-offs you'll find. Excellent course conditions, particularly the severely undulated greens that are very fast and challenging. Fantastic, friendly staff will do all they can to make your experience memorable. Clubhouse duals as a rustic restaurant and bar that has some great local grub and flair. Great value, especially when you take advantage of the All-Day-Play package.
The Bad: Much like its companion course, the Woodlands, the sand traps were a little thin. The practice facilities are to be desired with only a decent putting green and an uphill driving range with no targets. No GPS on the carts and limited on-course amenities.
The Verdict: The Links course is one of the most unique public courses in the Midwest. A true Scottish feeling without the adjacent body of water. Top 8-10 public course in Wisconsin.
Best Hole: The Par 5 13th would be on this list, but the beautiful bordering trees that engulfed the hole were all removed. The Boxcar hole remains the signature hole of the entire complex.
A trip back in time
To be upfront, I preferred the Woodlands over the Links. While the Links was an interesting look at golf course architecture thinking in the 1930s, it was more a curiosity than a great course. Having played 40+ links courses in Scotland and Ireland, I would put this below almost all of them.
That is not to say there isn't some challenge in this course. It starts with 3 straight longer par 4s, followed by a long uphill par 3 before the course "softens" up a bit. The main challenge is the greens with many of them popped up 4 feet or more, making getting up and down a challenge. The greens also have a good amount of interest in them.
As with the Woodlands, the bunkers are in horrible condition for a course normally rated quietly highly.
Play it once for the historical interest and make your own determination if it was worth the money or a return trip.
Add to your bucket list
Lawsonia Links is truly a one-of-a-kind.
Any golfers who consider themselves a bucket-list chaser or an architect aficionado must come play it.
I've never seen so many dramatic falloffs around the greens. Before you move on from the first green take a look behind it. Imagine having to hit a flop-shot from there. The shot comes up again and again, especially below the green on the famous 'Boxcar' par 3 at no. 7.
There's so many little nuances to this classic course. The gently rolling land makes for great tee and green sites. The first two tee shots are almost completely blind. Wild and completely random berms, almost like walls, block certain paths to other fairways or greens.
The course doesn't necessarily play firm and fast enough to be a true links, but with its berm/mounding and the longer grasses in spots, it certainly offers up the look. It's an engaging design, that's for sure.
Jason - if you enjoyed the Links architecture you should consider making visits on your travels to Spring Valley in Salem, WI easy drive north from Chicago and Kankakee Elks in St. Anne south of Chicago..L&M gems in the rough. Both courses are great values ($30)....prime restoration tracks - you just have to cut down some of the trees and put sand in - both courses never did!!
Solid fun round of golf
Played Lawsonia-Links while in Wisconsin on vacation. Arrived about 3pm on a Sunday afternoon and the place was dead. Had been a very windy day, so I'm guessing that is why. Went to Langford's Pub for a quick bite (average food) and went in to the proshop. There was a guy behind the counter that seemed too busy flirting with a female worker to notice us. After he asked if he could help us, I paid my fee (twilight w/cart $59) and he said I could go when I was ready.
Got to the first tee and could only get a vague idea where the hole went, due to a blind opening tee shot. Second tee shot is blind as well, but this seemed to be a design feature, more than just poor architecture. What followed was 4 enjoyable hours of golf. The greens are very firm and true. Many of the holes have cross bunkers that block the view of the fairway or target.
All in all, it was a fun course to play and I would do it again. $59 seemed a fair price for the course at twilight. Finished in plenty of daylight.
Must visit if you love golf
Lawsonia is a great place to play and the fact that is has two distinctly difference courses make it a great option for the golf enthusiast.
Played the Links Course and it was in fantastic shape. The greens rolled true and were fast. Fairways were lush (as are most fairways in the state based on all the rain we've had so far). This 18 is wide open but that means nothing. Every teem shot is right in front of you but ball striking is at a premium if you want to play well here. EVERY SINGLE green is elevated so if you miss one, your short game better be on point to even have a chance at saving par.
The driving range and practice area have always needed some improvement and area below average for courses of this caliber. A totally different experience than nearby Mascoutin (another central WI gem) but totally worth the effort to play 36 at Lawsonia.
I have been playing this course for about 10 years and it is still one of my favorite courses in Wisconsin. This course does not get the accolades that is deserves. It can be challenging and rewarding. From the tips the course is fairly long and quite a few of the holes will test you.
The one downside is the pace of play. I am typically an early morning golfer, but when I play in the afternoon, rounds out here can stretch to almost 5 hours. There is no on course Marshall which is a shame for a course of this caliber. Thus you are at the mercy of golfers that sometimes don't understand golf etiquette.
This is a must play links course in Wisconsin. We played on a very nice day in late October. The greens had been punched a week prior which was the only minor drawback to a great round. We finished in late afternoon and the bar was closed, but the pro shop manager was happy to open it up for us and we all had a nice chat.
Bring your "A" game
Have always loved the Links course. Shots to the greens must be accurate or your next shot from left right or long will be very challenging. You need to be in proper position on green in relation to hole location or putting will be a major challenge. Green pace is usually fast.
Old School at its very best
Links course is a 30's Langford/Moreau gem. Always a fun challenge and the architecture/green sites keep you thinking. Course was in excellent shape except the sand traps......if there was consistent sand in them this track would be 5 stars. Personally for me this is a bucket list course and one you shouldn't miss and visit......I've been fortunate to have experienced a lot of golf all over the states (public and private) and put this track as one of my top 10 favorites easily. 4.6 stars.
Thanks so much for your recommendation, glad you loved the Links course!
Bring Your Best Iron Game
We played both the Woodlands and Links on 9/19.
Links was in great shape, greens were firm and fast and every one was elevated - bring your best iron game, every approach needs to be well planned. Sand was in better shape here than on the Woodlands. We paid $100 to play all day and had a great time - we're already planning on a visit there same time next year.
Happy to hear you enjoyed your time with us and the conditions were on par, come back soon!
Played Links for 55 years
The course was in the best condition EVER! an absolute beautiful day and an amazing golf course. Want to go back soon!
We can't wait to have you back for more!
A great track.
We enjoyed the golf course. Very unique, very, scenic, and challenging.
Practice range is not up to the standards of the rest of the experience. Practice green doesn't allow for flat putts. I would definitely recommend this golf course.
So glad you loved the challenge, thanks for the recommendation!
Course in great shape. Some nice upgrades were made to the back nine by clearing out some trees, giving the course a new refreshed looked. Not to mention the wildlife like a red fox and wild turkeys (of course whitetail deer too) that make Lawsonia a unique experience. A local gem not far from the Fox Valley metro area!
Thanks for noticing our improvements and happy to hear you loved the scenery!
really enjoyed playing the course on a Sunday afternoon. There was some confusion about when we were to tee off. Once we got started the pace of play was fine. Took three others that had never played the course and all enjoyed the course.
Thanks for playing at our course, we're happy to hear you enjoyed your round once you got started!