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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Sandestin Resort, Florida

It's a short day's drive to Destin in the Florida panhandle and plenty of great golf.  The Sandestin Resort is a great headquarters spot.  It boasts four golf courses, including one advertised as "family friendly."  We played the Raven, a former venue for the PGA Champions Tour.  It had a very good practice facility that we needed for warming up because our day began in cool, windy weather.  The course was in great condition for winter play and the setting near the bay was beautiful.  The greens were very receptive and easy to putt, but getting to them was an issue.  Every drive was challenged by water or sand, and we found both.  Being patient off the tee and aware of the wind are the keys to success at the Raven.  There were no GPS units on the carts, and bringing your own is highly advised.
There is a mini-golf course on the resort property, a shopping center with decent resturants, and the beach is a short shuttle ride from the golf course.  A short jog down the Emerald Coast Parkway is an outlet mall large enough to keep non-golfers occupied for a full day (and a return trip to cash in the coupons collected).  Resort rooms include kitchenettes so visitors can make their own breakfasts and be ready for an early tee time.  Good lodging, good food, good fun, and golf---who can complain?

10:45 am est 

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