**The opinions in this post are mine. I was not approached by Anchor Golf Center to write about them, and I have not been compensated by them.**
On a recent half-day off from school, my son, age 11, and I had a whole afternoon to ourselves. I told him that he could pick what we did. His immediate response? Go to PetSmart to see the bearded dragons (yes, we actually did cave in and got one this past weekend. I’m sure Scruffy will be the subject of many a future blog.) and then head to the driving range at Anchor Golf Center. We are not a golfing family AT ALL, but each time we go there, we have a great time! So, off we went, on the drizzly April afternoon, to Anchor Golf.
Our time was limited since we had to pick up my daughter, but we used every minute. We borrowed some clubs from the front desk, got our bucket of balls from the dispenser, found a spot in the covered driving range to shield us from the rain, and had a wonderful afternoon comparing each of our swings and trying to hit the distance signs in the range field.
It seems that every time we go to Anchor Golf they have added more activities. I also feel as if they can read our minds. My husband longed for local batting cages, and poof! They opened last year. My son has been bugging us to find kid-friendly paintball, and poof! Brand new this year! Maybe I should wish for a million dollars…
I know that I will be spending several afternoons at Anchor Golf Center this summer. Here are some main features. (Check the Web site for rates and times.):
Mini Golf: Renovated 18-hole mini golf course.
Par 3 Short Course: 9-hole pitch and putt course.
FootGolf: Soccer meets golf! On the same short course as the pitch and putt, combine your soccer skills with golf rules.
Driving Range: 65 total bays, 30 of which are covered and equipped with automated power tees. 10 outdoor bays, and 25 newly reopened upper deck bays have standard tees.
Batting Cages: Outdoor batting cages set up so you can hit into the open driving range field. Adjustable pitch heights and speeds so all ages can play.
Paintball: Available for birthday parties, team-building activities, and private events, in addition to open play times. Intensity of paintballs can be adjusted. Appropriate for ages 12 and up.
HD Golf Simulator: Choose from over 20 championship golf courses from around the world for a realistic experience. Various driving ranges, games, skills challenges, and contest modes available.
Summer Camps: Kids ages 6-14 can take a full (9am-3pm) or half-day (9am-11:30am) camp. Before-care (8-9am) and after-care (until 4:30) available. In addition to golf skills, kids will do recreational activities such as dodgeball, wiffleball, and Foot Golf. Lunch, snack, and drinks provided by Anchor.
Junior Golf: For beginner to advanced levels (ages 6-17), plus a Family Golf program for families with kids ages 4 and up
Lessons: Private and group lessons for adults and kids ages 5-12.
SlamBurger: The popular Madison spot, Slamwich, now has a satellite branch at Anchor Golf called SlamBurger. Yum!
After our fun-filled visit, I decided to write this blog post, so I reached out to one of the owners, Madison’s own Ed Shannon. He and a few other Madisonians took over the facility in 2014, and have spent countless hours rebuilding and resurrecting this facility that has been near and dear to locals for years. He told me that one of his favorite things about being able to bring life back into Anchor Golf is when people tell him about their history with the place — their first date, their first golf lesson, etc. They have definitely achieved their goal of creating a family place run by family people. I know that my family will be returning often!
Anchor Golf Center is located at 21 Rt. 10, Whippany, NJ. (973) 887-0898. http://www.anchorgolfcenter.com/