Take some time to experience, enjoy golf in the country

Jean Harris


Take some time to experience, enjoy golf in the country

COURTESY SGT. JASPER GOLF CLUB

There are plenty of golf courses in the Lowcountry. We have awesome country clubs and public golf courses. However, most are not beginner friendly. Many beginners are hesitant to play golf in front of others, courses might be difficult, and golf can be expensive to play.

I have found the perfect place to go and have fun. The course at Sergeant Jasper Golf Club in Ridgeland is beginner friendly. It is only 25 minutes from Bluffton off I-95.

The golf course manager, Keith Smith, is very helpful and makes you feel wanted at their facility. I like the paragraph they have on their website: "We are here to encourage friendly competition, socializing and disconnecting from the rest of the world in our own beautiful corner of the Lowcountry."

The course is only nine holes but you can play it twice, from different tees, if you want an 18-hole experience. There are four sets of tees so you can get the challenge you are looking for.

The course has narrow fairways and small greens. The fairways are surrounded by live oak trees with Spanish moss. Water comes into play on holes #2 and #9. The condition of the course is just average and they need to improve the greens.

What I liked most was the pace of play. We played nine holes in one and a half hours using their gasoline carts. We never had to wait on anyone in front of us. If you enjoy walking, the stroll through the countryside is easy on your feet.

I love golf history and this facility has more of that than most courses in the Lowcountry. The course opened in 1960 as a private country club. Golfers in Ridgeland prior to that time had to travel to Walterboro to play, so they decided to build their own golf course.

They hired Robert Causey, executive director of the South Carolina Golf Association, to design the course. He made a plaster mold of each hole. Members then chose a hole and built it. The membership grew to more than 200 members.

Fred Nimmer, an original member, said that his family got the 6th hole. "Each member, most being farmers and builders, used their own equipment to build their hole," he said.

Bill Nimmer, Fred's son, grew up playing the course with his brother and friends. "It was a great place to play and be safe. We didn't have much else to do. We didn't play video games and watch TV. We ended up playing golf at a very high level," he said.

For more information about the course, visit sgtjaspergolf.com or call 843-726-8977.

Dr. Jean Harris is an LPGA Master Professional and teaches at local courses. jean.golfdoctor.harris@gmail.com; golfdoctorjean.com