Junior academies and kids golf camps are the new rage in family golf vacations. Mom and Dad can tackle more serious rounds as the kids make new friends and improve their skills with the help of customized lessons.
1. The PGA Tour Golf Academy Junior Camp at the World Golf Village
The World Golf Village is one of the most elegant and family-friendly resorts in Northeast Florida. It is home to the PGA Golf Academy and is the training headquarters for all certified instructors of the highly recognized, international academy. The World Golf Village is home to the World Golf Hall of Fame. Golfers of all ages will enjoy the top-rated Slammer and the Squire Course and the King and the Bear Course. The resort’s colonial Asian architecture, natural woodlands and wetlands, 200 year old oaks, sparkling lakes, and proximity to historic St. Augustine and local beaches promise an exciting vacation for golfers and non-golfers alike. The resort also includes an IMAX theater, an award-winning spa, a recently renovated gym, and many dining options.
The PGA Golf Academy at the World Golf Villageoffers four options for junior campers. All camps are open to boys and girls of all skill levels and are open from Monday – Friday.
7-13 year-olds can join the Half Day Camp from 9 until noon. Instructors will focus on range practice, instruction on stance, swing evaluation, grip, and golfing fundamentals. There will be a strong emphasis on rules and etiquette.
9-16 year-olds can sign up for the Full Day Camps from 9-4. Mornings will be spent in rotating stations that focus on putting, chipping, bunker play, and full swing. After the included lunch, students will play nine holes of golf accompanied by their instructors.
10-17 year-olds who want to take their game to the next level can sign up for Overnight Golf Camp. On their first day, the students will be evaluated and grouped according to their ability, with five or fewer students to each instructor. Mornings will consist of instruction, afternoons will be course play and instruction, and evenings will involve guest speakers, seminars, movies, field games, swimming, or night golf. Students will sleep two to a room in the Renaissance Resort and will be supervised at all times.
Students who wish to attend all of the activities of the overnight camp but wish to sleep with their families are open to attend Overnight Camp with the Commuter Option. Commuters usually stay at the camp from 9am-7pm.
2. Jim McLean Golf School Annual Summer Junior Golf Camp at Doral Golf Resort and Spa
The world-class Doral Golf Resort and Spa is just minutes from beautiful South Beach. The tropical atmosphere and great facilities make it perfect for any family vacation, and absolutely ideal for any golfers in the family. Mom and Dad can pick from Doral’s five championship golf courses: the Blue Monster (home to the PGA Ford Championship and one of the most difficult courses in the area), the Great White (the Southeast’s only desert-style course), the Jim Mclean Signature Course (with the infamous ‘Bermuda Triangle’s’ last three holes located on a tough island green), the Gold Course, and the Red Course. The resort includes beautifully renovated rooms, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, Jacuzzis, lake fishing, eleven state-of-the-art tennis courts, volley ball courts, cabanas, a jogging trail, billiards, five restaurants and bars, and of course, a top-notch spa.
The camp is open to girls and boys aged 7-13 at beginning and intermediate levels. Teachers lead groups of six (or fewer) students from 9am-3pm on Monday – Friday. Sessions can be extended to 5pm upon request. Teachers are bilingual and courses can be taught in Spanish and English. Students will have access to all of the golf school facilities, including the high-tech Superstation, where their swings will be filmed, watched, and analyzed. Children will receive written evaluation reports with photographs of their golf swings, prizes, an official cap, and a certificate of completion. Students will take golf lessons and course instruction in the mornings and afternoons. The midday break will consist of lunch at Bungalou’s Grill and free time the Blue Lagoon. Kids will love the famous Blue Lagoon’s four pools, many Jacuzzis, shady cabanas, and the thrilling 125 foot waterslide.
3. The Golf Academy at Fleming Island Golf Club
The Golf Academy at Fleming Islandoffers an affordable, quality half day camp for junior golfers. Fleming Island Golf Club is just 20 minutes from World Golf Village and 10 minutes from Orange Park, so it’s a great option for families staying at nearby resorts. This terrific course was designed by Bobby Weed, with a links style front nine and the back nine winding through towering pine trees. It has a great restaurant and is conveniently located just minutes from bustling downtown Jacksonville.
The Golf Academy’s priority is making sure kids have fun playing golf. The specially trained instructors know that the key to developing a great game is finding a true passion for the sport.
The weekly beginners camp is from 9-12:30 on Monday-Friday for kids aged 6-13. Children will learn the basic rules of the game and begin to develop their skills.
The advanced camp is from 12:30-5:30 on week days for golfers aged 10-17. Every day, it includes lunch, 2 hours of instruction, and 9 holes on the course.
Locals should also check out the Little Eagles Golf Little League to sign their kids up for after school lessons three days a week.
If someone’s birthday falls during vacation week, the course offers birthday party specials for young golfers.
Spice up your family’s next Florida Golf Vacation with one of these great options for the young golfers in your life!
Bernadette Stocker is a staff writer and golf travel expert at Tee Times USA, based in Flagler Beach, Florida. For 20 years, Tee Times USA has been the leader in the Florida golf vacation industry. Visit http://www.teetimesusa.com for complete information on the deals mentioned above and to book tee times at Florida golf courses, read thousands of Florida golf course reviews, and book Florida golf vacations. The company also has a staff of 20 golf vacation specialists ready to share insider tips at 1-800-374-8633 and take all the guess work out of your next Florida golf vacation.
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