Paul Albanese, ASGCA (Albanese & Lutzke Golf Course Design) has seen the opening this summer of his new course design at Sage Run Golf Course in Harris Township, Michigan. The course compliments, but is quite unique from, his 2008 design at Sweetgrass, also part of the Island Resort & Casino. Sage Run includes the natural use of drumlin, “a geological formation created by glaciers.”
Longtime golf writer Len Ziehm explains:
The Paul Albanese-designed Sage Run is brand new. It’s no renovation built over an existing course. This one was created on previously untouched land as part of an $8 million renovation of the Island Resort & Casino, which is eight miles away and already had a quality layout – Sweetgrass – on its property. Albanese said of the inevitable comparison of the courses, “They’re completely different properties. It’s like red wine and white wine – two different styles.’’
“A drumlin is a geological formation created by glaciers. A large ridge is a drumlin.’’ Albanese used a very large ridge when he designed Sage Run. It runs through the center of the 300-acre property and the holes go around, over and through it.
“Drumlins aren’t everywhere. There aren’t a lot in the South but, they’re a great land form for golf,’’ said Albanese. “It gives you elevation change, and drumlins are usually above flatter land. They look like an upside down spoon, and they add a lot of character.’’
Leaders of the Potawatomi tribe gave Albanese thousands of acres on a typographical map to find a place to build a golf course, and he decided on this one.
Sweetgrass didn’t have drumlins. Neither did Tatanka, an Albanese creation in very rural Nebraska that was named Best New Resort Course by Golf Magazine in 2015.
“Tribe leadership has wanted to utilize their people in building these courses,’’ said Albanese. “They want them to have a stake in building the golf course and take pride in it. It’s been amazingly successful.’’
The complete article on Sage Run can be found here.