Golf in the State of South Dakota
South Dakota, formerly nicknamed the “Sunshine State” is now nicknamed the “Mount Rushmore State” - every state has sunshine but only South Dakota has Mount Rushmore! Home to the Mount Rushmore National Memorial, it is bordered by the neighboring states of Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Wyoming and, of course, North Dakota. The Missouri River divides the state into eastern and western sectors. The state is sparsely populated, which would explain its small number of golf courses (38), with 12 in Sioux Falls and 7 in Rapid City.
The 18-hole championship Elkhorn Ridge Golf Club, Spearfish, in the northern Black Hills, has the unique combination of a mountainside front-nine and a creekside back-nine. The 18-hole public The Bluffs Golf Course, Vermillion, provides a tranquil, yet challenging, natural setting which incorporates the area’s native topography. Recently renovated, the 27-hole Cattail Crossing Golf Course in Watertown caters to all family members. The constantly improving Municipal Lakeview Golf course, Mitchell, is “challenging, not punishing”. Central Valley Golf Course, Hartford, calls itself “one of South Dakota’s finest rural golf courses”.
Alice Bauer, born in Eureka, learned to golf on a course owned by her father. She and sister Marlene were two of the founding members of the LPGA. Marlene Hagge, also from Eureka, was also a founding LPGA member and has been inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. Curt Byrum, from Onida, along with brother Tom, used to mow a golf course that they later learned to play on. They each won a PGA tour event in 1989. Curt became a TV golf analyst and now resides in Scottsdale, Arizona.