Located close to the Connecticut state line, the 18-hole layout at Longmeadow Country Club is divided by a main road with holes 2 to 9 laid out on the north side and the remainder set out on the other side. Largely unheard of beyond the boundaries of the Bay State, the course is one of Donald Ross’s stronger designs, featuring as it does seven par fours that measure at least 425 yards in length.
Highlight holes ay Longmeadow include the 439-yard 2nd (doglegging left to the target), the 315-yard 5th (playing across a gully to an offset green) and the downhill 425-yard 8th, where the fairway crosses an old creek en route to a narrow green.The course was chosen by the USGA to host the US Girls’ Junior Amateur Championship in 1995 and the male equivalent, the US Junior Amateur Championship in 2005. A new millennium restoration by Ron Pritchard has breathed new life into this classic old course and the results of this project will surely see it continue to thrive up to and beyond its centenary in 2022.
They could have called it Two Tier Country Club. No fewer than five greens (in an 11 hole stretch) have a second tier. On three of them (7, 11, and 12), the shelf is at the back of the green, while on two others (5 and 12), the shelf is on the left and right side respectively.
Despite this repetition, I enjoyed my round at Longmeadow. There’s a road through the middle of the course, but the routing is intuitive with holes running in a variety of directions. The greens (other than the 17th, a rather flat replacement of the original) are nicely contoured, providing for some challenging putting. And there are enough doglegs and fairway bunkers to keep the player thinking on the majority of her/his tee shots. The par 3s are a particular strength, going in four different directions and requiring the golfer to hit 4 different clubs.