Walker Art Center’s Artist-Designed Mini Golf 2013 – Minneapolis, MN

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Watching friends play our mini golf creation. Courtesy of John Perdoch

Played on numerous occasions, Summer / Fall 2013

Reviewed by Mr. Tee and the Pink Putter

Last November, a call went out to local artists to create “garden” themed holes for the Walker Art Center’s third installment of Artist-Designed Mini Golf. Approximately 65 submissions were reviewed and 13 were chosen for two seven hole courses with a shared eighth hole. The remaining two holes were designed and fabricated by a public sculpture class at the University of Minnesota, under the guidance of artist Chris Larson. The course is located in the sculpture garden, just west of the Cowles Conservatory. It opened on May 23rd and has been open every day this Summer, with some exceptions for severe weather conditions. The course closed the 29th of September.

Rating:

Hole-in-One – As one of the teams to design and fabricate a hole for this course, we’re admittedly biased when it comes to this review. However, we feel confident after playing the course more times than we can even count that we know it well enough to decidedly rate it as one of the best temporary courses we’ve seen. There is a huge variety of play including holes of skill and chance as well as participation from fellow players. The Walker has posted a fantastic virtual tour of the entire course. We could ramble on and on about this course (especially Mr. Tee), but we’re going to focus on our favorite elements of this 15 hole course via photo.

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Half of the course in one shot.
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We’re a tad biased but we like this one. Courtesy of Gene Pittman and the Walker Art Center
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Pink Putter ready to hit the ball in to it’s final resting play on Garden Gnome Foosball
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Garden Gnome Foosball – The path to the hole goes through these gnomes controlled by your opponents. Love the element of game play!
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One of our faves. Aaron Dysart’s “Rock! Garden”. Massive glittery fiberglass rocks installed with analog instruments to give more bang for the buck!
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Mr. Tee’s niece winding up at Le Bagatelle de Bagatelle.
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Eagle’s eye view of La Bagatelle.
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Peak at Pink Putter near Mega Golf Cup
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Mega Golf: mini version of the Walker inside a massive golf ball. Courtesy of Gene Pittman and the Walker Art Center.
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Mr. Tee and Pink Putter posin’ as usual in the Ames Room. Courtesy of John Perdoch
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18 Holes in One. One of the artist of the hole in the middle with the hat. Courtesy of Gene Pittman and the Walker Art Center
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Be Your Own Sculpture – where you become the obstacle between members of your playing group and the cup.
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Holey Lighted – this hole has 6 ft. deep concrete footings to prevent tons of metal from crushing us and our friends.
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Our friend Manny and Jen playing Zen Garden with Rock! Garden in the background

Pros:

Creative and varied game play
Various holes had interactive elements enhancing play
Unique design
Given artist budgets and limitations (ie. no electricity or water), each hole lived up to the thematic and creative challenge

Cons:

Some of the holes did not successfully withstand the elements over the course of the Summer
Mulch, debris and stuck balls affected game play

Nerdy Notes:

  • 15 Holes, Course A Par: 23 Course B Par: 24. Two 7 hole courses with shared 8th hole.
  • Cost: Single Course – $12 adults, $10 students, $9 Walker members / children ages 12 & Under. Both Courses – $18 adults, $15 students, $13.50 Walker members / children ages 12 & Under
  • While this is the most expensive course we’ve played, we didn’t not list price as a “Con” because the money goes to a great institution and every round of mini golf includes free passes to the museum.
  • Rubber covered putters of different colors based on size. Excellent selection of ball color.
  • Mr. Tee’s best game was 6 hole-in-one’s and a 16 on the B course.

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