Played on numerous occasions throughout the Summer 2014
Reviewed by Mr. Tee
The 4th iteration of the Walker Artist-Designed Mini Golf course came only one year after the 3rd iteration. After spacing this project out every couple of years in 2004, 2008 and 2013, the Walker made a call for designs in the Fall of 2013 for a full 18 hole course to be installed May 2014. Unlike previous years, artists and architects would submit a design and if their idea was selected, it would be fabricated by a local company, not the designers. 10 new holes, including one by us, were selected in Winter 2013 to join 8 holes held over from the previous version of the course. Unlike 2013, there would be no unifying visual theme but just 8 “garden” themed holes from 2013 and 10 new unrelated holes. A huge perk of having our design selected was the ability to play the course for free throughout the summer. This review comes after playing about 15-20 times including one time playing with the amazing Risa Puno. If you’re not familiar with her, we’ll have more on her soon!
Birdie – How can we not be biased? Our design was a signature final hole on the “A” course and we were given a new place to play the game we love in our hometown that we could visit throughout the Summer. The new additions to the course were built by the same company which made for more consistent play and visual experience than in previous years. Yet, the one issue we had with this year’s course was play. Visually, the new holes looked fantastic but some of the aesthetics came at the expense of the play. Numerous new holes had smooth, non-turfed playing areas that made for frustrating and unnecessarily challenging putting. This created longer wait times for groups to finish. The angles of ramps and hills didn’t consistently reward skilled shots and we found ourselves searching for ways to work around what appeared to be the natural route towards the cup. The course is leaps and bounds better than average but lacked the personality and character of the previous years. The photos below feature all of the newest additions and one picture of a hole from last year.
More photos of all of the holes and of the artists who designed and created them this year can be found on L’Etoile’s review of the course.
Full 18 holes
Course designed by artists
Unique game play
Colorful and engaging visual structures
Our massive gumball machine themed hole
Price (although it does include entrance in to the museum)
Numerous smooth, non-turfed playing surfaces
Unnecessarily challenging and frustrating at times
- Opened mid-May through September 2014. Hours online.
- 18 individual holes divided amongst two separate courses A & B.
- Cost: (9 HOLES): $12 adults, $10 students ($9 Walker members, children ages 7–12). FULL COURSE (18 HOLES): $18 adults, $15 students ($13.50 Walker members, children ages 7–12). Free for ages 6 and under with paid adult. EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT: $2 off each ticket, Monday–Thursday, 10 am–1 pm.Every ticket includes free gallery admission (up to $14 value) for each golfer. Tee times are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis; no advanced reservations.
- Wait for tee times were as long as 1-2 hours on weeknights and weekends.
- Rubber covered putters of various sizes. Excellent selection of balls.
- Course was sponsored by US Bank. They did photo booths on the weekend and had their logo on the mini golf balls.
- Mr. Tee got a hole-in-one on most holes accept for Take It To The Grave, Right On Cue, The Uncertainty Principle and Garden Gnome Foosball.