Owned and operated by Forsyth County Parks and Recreation Department, the 36-hole Tanglewood Park golf facility was designed by Robert Trent Jones Senior in the late 1950s. The Championship course is the longer and tougher of the two 18-hole layouts here, hosting the PGA Championship in 1974, the 1986 US Amateur Public Links Championship in 1986 and fifteen editions of the Vantage Championship on the Champions Tour, ending in 2002.
A five-month restoration was carried out by Robert Trent Jones Junior in 2018, with lead architect Bruce Charlton and Pinehurst-based designer Richard Mandell closely co-operating on the implementation of a master plan which involved refinements to many elements of the golf course such as bunkers, tees, tree management, and resurfacing of the greens.
It’s a large-scale layout and the bunkers were originally built to match the size of the property so they’ve been reconstructed using the Better Billy Bunker system with dramatic, flash-faced styling. The number of sand hazards was also reduced from ninety-nine to seventy-seven and greens were enlarged back to the 1974 design standard with new Champion bermuda putting surfaces.
Richard Mandell told us about his involvement in the project:
“I secured a 1974 aerial of the course and sold everyone on a restoration, with some adjustments for playability regarding the locals which was much different from the original partially-completed master plan. After course walk-throughs with members, we finalized our new plan and secured permits. The RTJ II people signed off on our plan with some input.”
PGA Championship venue at an affordable price? Yes, please! Make it a 36 hole day. A good test of all your clubs in the bag.
The late 2018 refresh of new Champion Bermuda greens, tree management/removal and a full bunker update have brought this RTJ Sr. design back to relevance in NC public golf.This is certainly a top 20 public facility in NC.