Saturday, April 18, 2015

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford

Playing the Pirate Island Adventure Golf course in Castleford.

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford

On Sunday 12 April we were heading back from a trip in York and Knaresborough and decided to swing into Castleford for some minigolf action.

Pirate Island Adventure Mini Golf in Castleford
A view of the Smugglers Bay course in Castleford

We didn't know it when we arrived, but Pirate Island Adventure Golf at the Junction 32 Outlet Shopping Village was celebrating its first birthday, with lots of people out on the two 18-hole courses, despite the chilly weather.

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
Pirate Island Adventure Golf has two 18-hole courses

With 36-holes of minigolf available we decided to play the slightly less busy Smugglers Bay course and great fun it was too. There were plenty of hole layouts and obstacles we hadn't seen before.

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
This was a particularly nice looking hole involving a tunnel and plateau

The Smugglers Bay course became the 358th played on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour and the 592nd visited overall. The Skull Cove course was the 593rd visited.

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
Watch out for the BIG octopus on this minigolf course

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
Emily lining up a putt

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
I almost aced this hole. Almost

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
Emily about to play through a castle ruin

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
Firing a shot at the hole

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
Close, but no cigar. At least it stayed up on the plateau

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
The giant snake was an interesting obstacle

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
You can play through the snake, or around it

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
A tap in for Emily

In our match-up on the Smugglers Bay course I beat Emily with a score of 38 to 44.

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
I won the gold medal this time (available at the kiosk for only 30p)

For further information, opening times and prices visit the Pirate Island Adventure Golf website.

Before we played the course we bumped into Pirate Island Adventure Golf's minigolf mascot, Stow-Away Sam!
Before we played the course we bumped into Pirate Island Adventure Golf's minigolf mascot, Stow-Away Sam!

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
Stow-Away Sam on the course

We're looking forward to returning to play the Skull Cove course at Pirate Island Adventure Golf in the future.

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
We'll take on Skull Cove next time we're in Castleford

Our tour has also taken us to the Pirate Island courses at the Abbey Hill Golf Centre in Milton Keynes and Hoebridge Golf Centre in Woking. We've yet to play the Pirate Island course at Ramsdale Park Golf Centre in Nottingham.

Pirate Island Adventure Golf in Castleford
One of the crocodiles (or is it an alligator?) lurking on the course

Links:
Pirate Island Adventure Golf website
Pirate Island Adventure Golf on Twitter
Pirate Island Adventure Golf on Facebook
Junction 32 Outlet Shopping Village website

Related blog posts:
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
Castleford
- Crazy Golf Crocodiles and Adventure Golf Alligators

Friday, April 17, 2015

Minigolf at Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo, Majorca

Finding a miniature golf course in Porto Cristo, Mallorca.

The minigolf course at Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo, Majorca
The minigolf course at Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo

Charter member of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour Christopher Gottfried has come up trumps again, as on a recent holiday to Majorca he managed to find an unplayable Minigolf course!

Crazy Golf at Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo, Mallorca
An interesting looking hole

The layout was at the Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo.

Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo, Majorca has a minigolf course
Restaurant, minigolf and pool

Mini Golf at Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo, Majorca
That's quite a big boat obstacle

Minigolf at Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo, Mallorca
This looks like a tricky hole to putt on

There's a great sea view from the minigolf course at Porto Cristo
There's a great sea view from the minigolf course at Porto Cristo

The last course Christopher spotted on his travels was the Crazy Golf at Ladram Bay in Devon, that layout also had a magnificent sea view.

Courses visited by Christopher Gottfried and Nina Dukes 2011-15:

Related blog posts:
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Christopher Gottfried
- Nina Dukes
- Mini Golf in Puerto del Carmen, Lanzarote

Links:
- Restaurante Vista Alegre in Porto Cristo on Facebook
MiniatureGolfer.com's list of Minigolf courses in Spain

Thursday, April 16, 2015

My new favourite colour

Putting Green by Dulux.

As a fan of all things minigolf-related I was pleased to see there's a colour of paint called 'Putting Green'!

Putting Green paint colour by Dulux
This is Putting Green

Over the years on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour we've Putted on a number of different coloured playing surfaces including green, red, white, silver, brown, black, white and even blue.

Minigolfer Richard Gottfried playing the Mini Golf Grass Putting Green in Ayr, Scotland
Playing the Mini Golf Grass Putting Green in Ayr, Scotland last summer. One of a number of Putting Greens we've played on our tour

I'll have to get a pot of Putting Green paint for The Crazy Golf Museum.

Check out the Dulux website for more details of the Putting Green colour of paint, products available and coordinating colours.

Links:
- Dulux website
- Putting Green colour on Dulux website
- Dulux on Twitter
- Dulux on Facebook
- The Crazy Golf Museum

Related blog posts:
- Putting Green
Types and Variants of Miniature Golf visited and played
Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

A new minigolf blog by The Putting Penguin

My fellow minigolf enthusiast Pat Sheridan has entered the world of blogging.

Having had his entry to the USPMGA US Open tournament accepted, pro-putter Pat Sheridan is readying himself for a tilt at the title. In the lead-up to tee-off he'll be keeping the world up-to-date on his new blog.

Since 2001 Pat and his colleague Mandy Ranslow have operated the world's largest miniature golf course review website - The Putting Penguin.

Veteran minigolfer and rookie blogger Pat Sheridan Pat Sheridan about to tee-off at Putt in the Park in London, England
Veteran minigolfer and rookie blogger Pat Sheridan about to tee-off at Putt in the Park in London, England

The 2015 US Open competition will be hosted by the Champions Golf Learning Center in Hendersonville, North Carolina on 15 and 16 May.

Pat has played in 36 minigolf tournaments in his career, winning three events in 2011 - the Ice Breaker Tournament, Ocean's 18 Tournament and Mulligan's Warm Up Tournament. In USPMGA events Pat recorded a 12th place finish at the 2014 US Open, and was 5th in the 2014 Maine State Dolphin Open.

Read the first posts of the new blog at 'The Check is No Longer in the Mail' and 'What's in a tournament? (Part I)'. I'm looking forward to following his progress and wish him all the very best in the US Open.

Pro Minigolfers and Bloggers Richard Gottfried and Pat Sheridan
The Pro Minigolfers at Putt in the Park

Last month Emily and I had the pleasure of meeting Pat while he was on a trip to the UK. We had a fun round at Putt in the Park in Wandsworth, London.

Links:
- The Putting Penguin blog
- The Putting Penguin website
- US Pro Mini Golf Association (USPMGA) website
Champions Golf Learning Center website

Related blog posts:
- Minigolf with The Putting Penguin at Putt in the Park
- The Putting Penguin

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

National Golf Day 2015

Happy National Golf Day 2015.

Lining up a putt from the very edge of the green at Stockwood Park in Luton - I'm not the best at pitching, but I'm a decent enough putter

My fellow minigolf enthusiast (and Putt Putt pro) Matt Bellner alerted me to the fact that today is National Golf Day!

The tweet Mattie 5 sent me shows Jon Guhl, CEO of the Middle Atlantic Section of the PGA of America hitting the ceremonial putt to tee-off the Congressional Putting Challenge. Proof that 'regular' BIG golf is all about the Putting. I look forward to seeing the Putting Challenge results.

National Golf Day is organised by WE ARE GOLF - a coalition of leading organisations in Golf including the Club Managers Association of America, Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, National Golf Course Owners Association, PGA TOUR, The PGA of America, the U.S Golf Manufacturers Council and the World Golf Foundation.

The 2015 event is the eighth annual edition. For more information about National Golf Day check out the WE ARE GOLF website.

In the minigolf world there are three 'Mini Golf Days' taking place around the world this year (and every year) - National Miniature Golf Day on Saturday 9 May 2015, Miniature Golf Day on Monday 21 September, and Minigolf Tag in Austria (date TBC for 2015).

Links:
- WE ARE GOLF
- National Golf Day
- Mattie 5 Bellner

Related blog posts:
- Mini Golf Days in 2015
- Golf

Plonk Golf in Dalston, London

New Crazy Golf / Snooker hybrid course opening in east London.

The capital will see the opening of a new miniature golf course this month as Plonk Golf pitches up at Efes Pool and Snooker Club in Dalston.

The 200ft long 9-hole Crazy Golf course has been created by The House of Revelry and with it's mix of putting and cue sports it sounds intriguing. I'm looking forward to giving Plonk Golf a play on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour.

The pop up course was previously open for private bookings over the festive period, but will be open to the public from 29 April.

For more information, opening times and booking details visit the Plonk Golf website.

On our travels we've played a few Minigolf/Cue Sport crossover games including Pit-Pat, Q Golf and a bizarre hole at the Golf Apocalypse.

Playing Crazy Golf on a Snooker Table at the Golf Apocalypse of 2012
Playing Crazy Golf on a Snooker Table at the Golf Apocalypse of 2012

M&S gluten free Rice Porridge

Trying the new Made Without Wheat Rice Porridge from Marks and Spencer.

While Spring and Summer may not be the seasons for warming breakfasts, after spotting a new gluten and wheat free product in the York city centre branch of M&S I had to give it a try.

Made Without Wheat Rice Porridge from Marks and Spencer
The boxes contain eight sachets of the gluten free porridge (made of brown rice flakes and ground maize porridge)

I had a bowl, made using milk, for breakfast and it tasted great. It filled me up until lunchtime too. This is a glowing endorsement as I have never been one for breakfasts (although this is probably something to do with 27 years of undiagnosed Coeliac Disease and feeling immediately ill after eating breakfast).

I like the fact the box contains individual sachets of porridge. And even though it contains no oats at all, it tastes like porridge. I'll be buying it again.

Links:
Marks & Spencer website
Marks & Spencer Made Without Wheat page
- Link to a product list of M&S products that DO NOT contain GLUTEN
Coeliac UK website

Related blog posts:

Minigolf at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge

A visit to the miniature golf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge, West Midlands.

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 1 at Dorridge

We recently visited the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge, Solihull for what would be the last minigolf tournament to be held on the 12-hole course - the 2015 MMGC Midlands Open. Over the years the venue has hosted many British Minigolf Association tournaments and we've competed in quite a few of them. The course has always been a pleasure to play (even when it's been punishing) and is far more difficult to master than it first appears.

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
The tricky second hole

Back in September 2008 the course became the 72nd played on the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour. I visited the layout while en route to the Monday night league at Adventure Island Mini Golf at Star City, Birmingham.

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 3

There are plans to create a new adventure golf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre. The existing course will be removed. It will certainly be missed.

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 4

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 5

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 5's obstacle

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
An even closer look inside the castle on hole 5

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
And hole 5's green

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 6

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 7 - the scene of many a minigolfing nightmare!

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 8

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 9

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 10

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 11

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 12

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Hole 2 from another angle

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Playing hole 5

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Having a shot on hole 9

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Over the humps on hole 10

Minigolf course at the Four Ashes Golf Centre in Dorridge
Emily playing the first

For more information check out the Four Ashes Golf Centre website.

Links:
- Four Ashes Golf Centre
- British Minigolf Association

Related blog posts:
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Dorridge