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Great Places To Play Golf In November
By Arthor Pens
Many golfers in northern climates may think the season is over. Or at least until that next business trip or Thanksgiving vacation. Living in Colorado, I've played in all types of conditions to quench my thirst for the links. Since I can't guarantee when that one sunny November day in the Twin Cities or Boston will be I've limited my suggestions to warmer climates.

There are three reasons why in November is ideal.

First, rates are cheaper. In Phoenix and the Valley of the Sun, it's early season and greens fees are still good. You can play while visiting retired parents. If there are a couple of famed courses on your must play-before-I-die list, November is the time to look for more affordable rates.

Second, courses are not as busy. Peak tourist season has not hit Panama City or Orlando. So you won't have to spend half your time sitting in a cart.

Third, the weather is better. In Miami it's after hurricane season. Courses haven't been hacked up and the winter grass has come in. Hotel rates are very reasonable, too. When playing in New Orleans you won't have to wring out your clothes after you get off the course. Humidity is down, course conditions are perfect.

And don't forget San Francisco and its famously bizarre weather patterns. Tee off in early November and you may think its June anywhere else. Courses may be a little dry, but the fog has cleared. Houston, like New Orleans and Atlanta, boasts low humidity and perfect course conditions.

A course that has been very popular lately in the Houston area is Longwood Club in Cypress, Texas. They just completed redeveloping the Post Oak 9 and you've got to get out and play it. Designed by former touring pro Keith Fergus and Harry Yewens, this Houston area 27-holer is rated among the top five daily fee courses in the Houston area.

San Antonio is good in November for all three reasons. Average November high temperature is 71 degrees and San Antonio city leaders are aggressively courting vacationers to visit their courses. To compete with destinations like Myrtle Beach, Phoenix

and Scottsdale, San Antonio combines classy courses with skimpy green's fees.

Check out La Cantera Palmer Course, outside of San Antonio in the Texas Hill Country. Designed by Arnold Palmer, this course has two signature holes. The first is hole #7, The Rattler, featuring a rattlesnake-shape bunker on the left side and a cliff side tee shot eighty-feet above the fairway. The second is hole #12, where the green is guarded by a natural waterfall and creek.

November also is Thanksgiving month. The four-day weekend provides a great opportunity to get away with the family or your buddies for 36 holes. And you'll be back in time to shovel snow on Sunday.

Orlando has challenging courses in the shadow of the Disney kingdom. This is an ideal locale to combine family time and time. Celebration (near Disney and Kissimee) is an upscale daily-fee resort course that exudes an atmosphere of beautiful tranquil, fun and challenging in Orlando. Conveniently located in Kissimmee near I-4 and just off Hwy. 192, you'll never know you're in the heart of Orlando's tourist district and only minutes away from Disney World.

And if you're in Afghanistan this November it is easy to find a course as there is only one. The Kabul Club course has no grass and is billed as a desert-style course. The greens are called "browns", a tightly packed combination of oil and sand. The owner refuses to close the nine-hole course despite the fact they have only seven balls and it's in the middle of a country with one of the lowest GDP's in the world. "People need to play golf," he said. And how!

People do need to play golf. This November, get out there and hit few and have fun.

The author is the founder of GolfGuys.net, a web site where you can search hundreds of courses and make your tee time reservations online, as well as buy gift cards; good toward green fees for any public course in the U.S.


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