Golf’s Grand Design, a worthy attempt by PBS to introduce viewers to the various approaches and storied history of golf course architecture, premiered on Friday, August 3rd. Unlike all other playing fields, the golf course is not restricted by specified dimensions, nor is the conduct of championships enclosed within a specific time period. As a result, golf tends to take on the trappings of a journey, clothing itself in movement along the ground and across a temporal arc. Golf’s Grand Design proposed to tell the story of the creation (intentional or casual) of the golfing ground over which these journeys take place.
The company developed a micro site to organize the various sources and references for the program and its companion book. The micro site features a concise menu bar that accesses The Program, Bonus Videos, Resources and pieces on architectural history under the heading Learn More. Each menu heading leads to a wealth of information, video footage and extended access into what golf course design and construction encompasses and proposes to deliver.
For me, personally, golf course architecture grabbed me in a subconscious way. As a youth, sneaking onto the Grover Cleveland golf course via the swiss-cheese fences along Eggert Road was a youthful right of passage. Unlike the other kids, I stuck around to play. Grover was, or had, something special to it, I somehow knew. It wasn’t until years later that I unearthed its roll as host site for an early US Open championship and more.
Ultimately, golf course architecture varies as do the weather and fashion. No matter which courses you play, there’s a story behind their existence. Do yourself a favor and dig deeper to find out more. And stay tuned to this website for Part Two of A Take On Golf’s Grand Design.