Golf, Mrs. Calabash, Wherever You Are!

by Apr 23, 2024South Brunswick, Tee Time with Larry

Calabash-based Meadowlands Golf Club is a challenging yet rewarding highlight of golf in Brunswick County.

Nestled in between Wilmington and Myrtle Beach you will find a golfer’s gem: Meadowlands Golf Club. This well-kept Willard Byrd-Dave Johnson track will challenge you, reward you for making the right decisions and make you want to come back again. It is easy to reach off U.S. Highway 17 on Meadowlands Trail, just a few miles north of the SC/NC border.

Meadowlands is a spacious championship par 72, with five sets of tees ranging from 7054 yards at the tips, (with a 74/132 rating) to forward tees of 5041 yards. The course winds through a substantially complete residential single-family development and features many strategically placed bunkers and ponds that will test your shot-making. The Tifeagle Bermuda greens are well-manicured to generally Stimp 10-11, and I found the traps to be very well-groomed.

Calabash Meadowlands Golf Course

Another benefit is the recently redone cart paths that will not jar your fillings loose! No wonder this course won the Myrtle Beach Golf Course Owners Association Course of the Year award in 2018 and made it deep into the regional and national competitions.

I spent a chilly winter afternoon with co-owner Jakob McLamb, who is justifiably proud of this 1997 development built by his family. The McLambs are well-known in these parts for their construction and development expertise.

The course has a small but efficient pro shop, where their prices are quite reasonable. I selected a cotton blend Cardinal-logo shirt, which was regularly priced at $49.95 and was on sale for only $25, and they had a complete selection of sizes at that price. There is a cozy snack bar where you can get breakfast and lunch from a limited menu, again at reasonable prices. They have a compact driving range, and host The G2 Golf Academy on-site as well.

Meadowlands Golf Course Jakob Pro Shop

Playing pressure has increased due to the conversion of the former sister course, Farmstead, into a luxury home development.

Meadowlands participates in all the local golf discount programs, and its 70-plus waiting list for membership is testimony to the quality of the golf.

When you tee off on hole number 1, 379 yards from the middle tees, dogleg left around a significant water hazard, you know you will need your thinking cap this round! With a trap at the corner, water long and left off the tee and the undulating green protected by a large trap in front, bogey is a very acceptable score. This is not a tricked-up course — you will see the challenges, and it’s up to you to figure out how to avoid trouble!

While hole 2 is fairly benign, a few words of advice: Don’t challenge the water left. Hole number 3, with two large ponds to traverse, will have you pulling out a calculator to figure out how far to hit your drive and second shot; no wonder it’s the number 1 stroker.

Meadowlands Driving Range Calabash

Hole 4 is McLamb’s favorite, and it earns my respect too; at 452 yards from the middle tees and only 380 for the seniors, it looks like an easy Par 5 on the card. But do not hit your tee shot or approach very far left, and the hazards right are not so good either. Fly over the big trap and you are on a sloping green where a two-putt is an achievement.

You get another forced carry over the pond on #6, and another on the par 3 8th. You’ll relax more on the straight-forward 9th hole, which some big hitters can reach in two. You’ll go by the clubhouse on the way to 10 and can stop for a libation.

Calabash Meadowlands Golf Cart

The back 9 is equally challenging at Meadowlands — dogleg right on #10, a pond carry on #11 and a chance to let the big dog out on 12. You’ll find another chance to go for it in two on the par 5 14th, and you’ll be ready for three great finishing holes: #16 is a 90-degree dogleg left, with no chance of going over the corner, and a tough down-sloping green. There is a diabolical trap in the middle of number 17 that makes it play much harder than the 309 yards from the white tees. And the closing par 5 boasts a water hazard about 140 yards out that make your lay up a challenge, plus a well-guarded green, even after they cleared out some of the trees to the right. (Hint: Aim left of the green for a reasonable up-and-down).

If it sounds like playing this course will be fun, you are right! Local knowledge is important, and it’s no wonder the Meadowlands’ Interclub team won the most recent county IGA competition. Superintendent Alex Pick and the McLamb family have something special for you, so check them out. It would be a cardinal sin to miss this one, golfers!

Want to play?
Meadowlands Golf Club
1000 Meadowlands Trail, Calabash
(910) 287-7529

Photography by Matt McGraw