Grand Canyon University debuts its North Valley golf course
By Cassandra Johnson
This year brought a new player to the local golf scene: Grand Canyon University debuted an updated golf course. You may know the Grand Canyon University Golf Course as the former Maryvale Municipal Golf Course, part of the City of Phoenix Department of Parks and Recreation.
Phoenix has a new 30-year partnership with GCU, which means the city still owns the course but the university will maintain and manage it. Last year, GCU spent $10 million on renovations in hopes of increasing rounds played and attracting major tournaments. They also opened a brand new 10,000-square-foot clubhouse complete with a full-service bar and restaurant, pro shop, offices, and event space.
This par-71 course extends 7,269 yards from the tips and was re-opened to the GCU community, student athletes, and the general public as of Jan. 1. John Fought, who collaborated with Tom Lehman in 2002 to redesign the course at Phoenix Country Club, was involved in last year’s redesign. New tee boxes, lengthened fairways (the course is about 700 yards longer now), increased and improved bunkers, and elevated greens are among the changes, and the fully-grown trees and walkable layout are preserved.
Recent online reviews are favorable, with a general consensus that the greens are fast and the sand trap quantity and placement present new challenges. They even pour local craft brews in the bar. This is no longer our average muni course.
Along with a new home golf course, GCU also boasts NCAA Division I men’s and women’s golf teams and a golf management program to compliment their bachelor of business management degree. Through the Colangelo College of Business, golf management program students will get hands-on experience gained by working at the university’s newly renovated golf course, as well as practice their networking skills, while students in the hospitality management program will benefit from on-the-job training in the restaurant at the golf course.
Located at 59th Avenue and Indian School Road, about three miles away from the GCU campus, greens fees at Grand Canyon University Golf Course are reasonable at $30–$55. For tee times, contact the course at gcugolf.com or (623) 846-4022.
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