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Mercer County, PA: The Perfect Destination For A Safe And Challenging Golf Escape

April 8, 2021

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – What makes Mercer County, PA an attractive destination for golf?

Multiple courses within a half-hour or less drive from one another, a great selection of middle- to high-end courses, low greens fees, and a variety of accommodations centrally located to the courses. Dozens of fabulous restaurants, wineries, brewpubs and bar choices are nearby for the ultimate weekend golf experience. The Mercer County, PA area offers two lodging facilities located on golf courses and 15 other accommodations that cater to golf groups with Stay & Play packages.

With Covid travel restrictions lifted and beautiful sunny days on the horizon, now is a great time to plan your next golf escape to Mercer County PA!  With over 10 courses all set in the beautiful rolling hills and scenic valleys of Western, PA and Eastern, Ohio.  Play courses such as Spring Valley Golf and Lodge with breathtaking views, framed by picturesque, rolling farm country or the lush fairways and fast greens of Tam O’Shanter.

A few of our “Must Play” golf courses and top accommodations offering stay and play packages are listed below.

Enjoy Outstanding Golf in Mercer County PA

The Spring Valley Golf and Lodge is an 18-hole public golf course featuring tree-lined fairways and spring-fed ponds with a golf adventure at each hole, offering challenges for all levels of players. Barbara Mills, one of the owners, said they are taking safety seriously this year as they prepare to open for the 2021 season. “What safer place to be than on a golf course? Spring Valley is looking forward to a stellar 2021, with golf bookings already on the rise. We are a safety-first golf course, and we take sanitation seriously.

Built mostly by Mother Nature, each of the 18-holes on the course has a beautiful view and is framed by rolling farm country. “We are a family-owned resort, and we take special care of our guests just as much as our adventurous course,” said Bob Mills, one of the owners.

The course features a 180-foot elevation change, providing a fun golfing adventure for everyone from beginners to seasoned players. The front nine of the course can be tackled by novices, while the back nine prove more challenging.

Spring Valley’s Golf and Lodge Stay & Play Packages can be customized for golf groups of all sizes – from 2 to 44. “We offer overnight accommodations on the course, breakfasts, dinners, and as much golf as you would like. The Lodge is located in the upper level of our restored 1870’s dairy barn Clubhouse, made up of 12 separate guest rooms, each with a private bath. The best part of our Lodge is the flexibility,” said Bob Mills.

Each room in Spring Valley’s rustic lodge is equipped with two beds, a private bath, and air conditioning. The Lodge also houses two suites, each with sitting rooms and two bedrooms.

At the Clubhouse, golfers can enjoy fantastic home-cooked meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There are plenty of delicious choices to help you refuel for another game, from sausage, eggs, and home fries to their famous chili dogs and French fries.

You can perk up with freshly brewed coffee in the morning or unwind after dinner with a cold 6-pack on one of the outdoor decks or enjoy the warmth of the fire pit. Golfers can also cool off in the pool or relax in the hot tub while watching the sunset over the valley. There is also a fully stocked bar and pro shop to meet every golfer’s needs.

“Also located in the upper level of our Clubhouse, The Eagle’s Nest is the perfect spot for smaller groups. A screened-in porch with a private entryway houses four new rooms located next to the lodge. A TV, comfortable seating, and a table for late-night card games let you and your group unwind together, but with a little privacy,” said Mills. The house accommodates up to 12 guests with six bedrooms, two baths, a living room, cable TV, and a full kitchen and can be rented for a family reunion, bachelor party, or as part of one of Spring Valley’s Stay & Play packages.

“Our Clubhouse is open for fantastic food and beverages, and our Stay and Play packages are priced right, so check out our website or give us a call,” said Barbara Mills.

Golfers can practice their swing at the chipping net or perfect their putt on the practice green. Spring Valley also offers paddle boat rentals, horseshoes or cornhole, and a stocked fishing pond for plenty of fun during your downtime from golfing.

Spring Valley Golf & Lodge is located at 496 Bestwick Rd., Mercer, PA 16137. 866-507-1406.

Tam O’ Shanter of PA has been in the Kerins family for over 80 years and is owned by John Kerins and his brother Richard. Located in Hermitage, PA, this public course is rated a four-star golf course by Golf Digest and features manicured green fairways and immaculate bent-grass greens. Tam O’ Shanter offers golfers of all skill levels a fun and challenging experience with the Shenango Valley’s beautiful views.

The construction of Tam O’ Shanter began in 1929, according to one of the owners, John Kerins, and it is considered one of Pennsylvania’s finest public golf courses. This course does not only feature breathtaking scenery and immaculate greens, but it also has been played by notable golfers such as Arnold Palmer, who played the course as a teenager, and Sam Snead, who set the course record almost 85 years ago. The course is well known for its signature 14th hole, called Death Valley, which is difficult to beat, even seasoned players. The gulch on this hole is known for killing good scores and has claimed many in its depths.

“The golf course is always in great condition, and it’s a challenge to all different levels of players from beginners to experts,” said Kerins. Golfers can also enjoy the well-maintained driving range and a fully-stocked, award-winning pro shop unsurpassed by anyone in the area. After you finish your game, you can unwind on the clubhouse patio overlooking the 19th and 18th greens.

“We have a beautiful 18-hole golf course with a driving range and a PGA award-winning golf shop. And with the attraction of the local hotels only a half a mile away makes it a great destination for stay and play packages,” said Kerins.

Tam O’ Shanter’s location in Mercer County is a major draw for golfers all around the region. “We are conveniently located off of exit 4b on Interstate 80. So not far from Pittsburgh, Cleveland, or Erie,” said Kerins. Along with the award-winning pro shop and several hotels in the area, the central location makes this course a great destination for groups planning to book a Stay and Play Golf Package for their next corporate retreat or family gathering.

Tam O’Shanter of PA is located at 2961 S Hermitage Rd. Hermitage PA 16148, 724-981-3552.

Avalon at Buhl Park is a classic country club golf course that plays from 5450 yards to 6369 yards. This course has some of the fastest and well-guarded greens you will see anywhere. Buhl Park may be our most challenging course from the member tees. Its signature hole is number 18, a truly picturesque par 3 surrounded by water, that can stretch to 220 yards. Over its 100+ years of existence it has been played by some of the world’s greatest golfers.

Avalon at Buhl Park is located at 1030 Forker Blvd. Hermitage, PA 16148, 724-704-8801

Buhl Farm Park Golf Course and Driving Range is the only free golf course in the United States. You read that right! Free!  No green fees.  All golfers are required to sign in before playing and donations are encouraged! The golf course is open daily from 8:00am – dusk.  The 9 hole course even boasts a pro-shop with Trackman Golf Simulators.  Buhl Farm Park Golf and Driving Range is located at 129 Forker Blvd. Hermitage, PA 16148, 724-981-5522.

Pine Lakes Golf Club & Resort, named the “Best Places to Play” by Golf Digest Magazine, was established in 1926. This 4 ½ star, 18-hole public golf course is located on 243 acres of large, contoured championship greens, providing golfers, both novice and experienced players, a challenging and enjoyable golf experience.

Pine Lakes Golf Club & Resort is owned by J.V. Ferrara and is in Hubbard, Ohio, at I-80, exit 234, just 20 minutes west of the I-79 interchange. Pine Lakes Golf Club features a PGA- approved practice facility that was developed as a comprehensive learning center and place for golfers of all skill levels to practice.

The staff at Pine Lakes Golf Club & Resort will book Stay and Play packages from Mid-April to Mid-October, handling the entire booking process for you and groups of all sizes for one day or a week. Unlimited golf packages are available as well as chef-catered group meals.

Ferrara said the quality of their course is what draws people to golf in the area. “The quality and value can’t be beat. People are driving from Cleveland and Pittsburgh for day trips. That is how popular the area is,” Ferrara said.

Pine Lakes Golf Club & Resort is located at 6233 West Liberty St. Hubbard, Ohio 44425, 330-534-9026.

Another golfing gem, Yankee Run Golf Course, is an 87-year old course located in a scenic, natural setting in Brookfield, Ohio. This 150-acre public course features fun and challenging rolling terrain that is enjoyed by beginners and pros alike. “Our layout is unique for the area. The homey atmosphere that I think you get when you come here is another unique feature of our course. Golfers normally come up to me and say, “We love it here; people are so nice,” said William McMullin, one of the owners.

This 18-hole course offers a wholesome atmosphere and stunning views of Brookfield’s charming tree-lined fairways, making it a sight to behold all season long. McMullin said they promote a very family-oriented, hometown attitude where friendliness is key. “We’ve been in business since 1931, and we are very proud of that. We’ve been family-owned and operated since then, and we are currently on our third and fourth generation of family ownership,” said McMullin.

As an owner, McMullin frequently talks to golfers who have never visited Yankee Run before, hearing about how much they love the course and the friendly, family-oriented atmosphere he and his family hard to promote.

Yankee Run Golf Course has won numerous awards and accolades, including “Golf Course of the Year” by the Ohio Golf Course Owners Association, “Top 100 Must Play golf courses in Ohio” by Golf Styles Magazine, and they also have a 4-1/2 Star Rating by Golf Digest Magazine Places to Play, among others.

“Our course conditions are second to none, and we’re priced pretty reasonable compared to most major cities. We get a lot of players coming from all over, including Pittsburgh, Erie, Cleveland, New York, and even Canada,” said McMullin.

The course also features a Club Room available for rent and a snack counter where golfers can purchase beverages and food such as hot dogs and hamburgers to enjoy while they take a break from golfing.

McMullin said for accommodations, they work with Pine Lakes Golf & Resort’s Stay and Play packages in Hubbard, OH. They also work with a variety of local hotels such as the Holiday Inn Express and Suites of West Middlesex, Pa, and the Park Inn Radisson in Sharon, Pa, to help golfer’s plan an amazing getaway.

Yankee Run Golf Course is located at 7610 Warren Sharon Road Brookfield, Ohio 44403. 330-448-8096. VisitMercerCountyPA has more information.

Pine Hills Golf Course, built-in 1969, was designed by Charles Loreno. The course is known for its scenic and peaceful surroundings along with its reasonable rates. Golfers consistently rate Pine Hills as a great and fun place to play. The course features 6013 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par 72.

Pine Hills Country Club is located at 263 Leech Rd. Greenville, PA 16125, 724-588-8053.

Grove City County Club, founded in 1917, is ranked in the top 20 courses in the area. Guests who travel in from out of town can enjoy this private course by using their “member for a day” program. This program includes the full use of the Club, including the course, range, Grill Room, and pool. Purchase of a hotel package is required to use the Club and gain access to the traditional country club services with plenty of focus on fun and family.

Grove City Country Club is located at 73 Grove City Road, Grove City, PA 16127. 724-748-4912.

Oak Tree Golf Club, located in West Middlesex, is an exciting and challenging 18-hole course designed around four lakes by famed course architect Ed Ault originally designed the course around four lakes, which still come into play on seven different holes. The course is also known for large, undulated greens and beautiful landscape. The 8th hole has a real treat — a picturesque covered bridge that is also visible from several other vantages on the course. Oak Tree is a definite challenge for serious players, with a total of 60 large sand bunkers throughout.  Hole No. 18 is the signature hole. It’s a 407-yard, par 4 that requires a precise tee shot through two fairway bunkers followed by an approach shot over a lake that is highlighted by a scenic fountain. And if you’re new to this classic game, don’t worry. The course is also friendly to rookies.

Oak Tree Golf Club is located at 48 State Line Road, West Middlesex, PA 16159. 724-528-9985.

Golf Group Outings for Large or Small Groups

Whether you want to book a small getaway for a group of friends or are looking to book your next large corporate retreat, Mercer County PA is an excellent location for a safe spring outing. From family reunions, corporate retreats, and bachelor parties, you can find affordable getaways close to I-80, I-376, and I-79.

With a variety of luxurious accommodations, from inns to bed and breakfasts, and one-of-a-kind restaurants and breweries, you can be sure to find a relaxing getaway with a Stay and Play Golf package in Mercer County, PA. Don’t let cabin fever get you down. Book your trip today!

Request a quote for a Mercer County Stay and Play Package.

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