FRANKENMUTH, MI – For those passionate about golf who also love a great family-style chicken dinner, both can be enjoyed in the charming Bavarian-themed village of Frankenmuth, Mich. The famous Zehnder’s 1500-seat restaurant is only 435 yards (par 4) from the first tee of The Fortress golf course. The 18-hole, par 72 course was designed by Dick Nugent Associates in 1991; this year is the 25th anniversary of the lush, impeccably maintained and challenging course.
“It’s hard to believe that 25 years have gone by. The Fortress was designed to expand our guest experience and give the region a championship course for all levels of play. We are proud of the strides we have accomplished with our junior golf program that began in the mid 90’s to the hosting of several major tournaments,” said Zehnder’s Chairman and CEO Al Zehnder. The Fortress has been recognized as one of Michigan’s top golf courses; it has been honored by Golf Week magazine and Golf Digest.
In the last 25 years over a half million rounds have been played and the course relinquished only 53 hole-in-ones, the first in 1992, by Ms. Pat Scarlett in the Michigan Bell State Mixed Couples Tournament.
The Fortress has welcomed thousands of golf enthusiasts and celebrity players including former Detroit Lions running back and NFL Hall of Famer Barry Sanders, Olympian Jim Abbott, former Chicago Bears defensive end NFL Hall of Famer Richard Dent, Michigan State University Spartan head basketball coach Tom Izzo, and WJR-AM newsman Frank Beckman among others. The Fortress has played host to Meijer’s Junior Tour; Top Fifty Junior Tour; Michigan PGA Open Qualifier; Buick Open Qualifier; Big I National Qualifier Junior Tournament and several Michigan High School Athletic Association district and regional tournaments.
Fortress Lessons and Events
To enhance the Fortress guest experience, The Fortress Golf Professional Kyle Martin instituted the online golf academy in 2015. When golfers sign up for lessons with Martin the class is videotaped using the latest technology including FLIGHTSCOPE Doppler Radar, and V1 Video Analysis. The video lesson is sent via e-mail to the golf student who can then review the lesson at their leisure. Golf lessons are available for adults and juniors. Kyle has taught numerous all-state high school players, collegiate players, and up-and-coming professionals. The Fortress practice facilities include: putting green; chipping green; practice bunker and target-oriented driving range.
• The Fortress Junior Golf Program, designed for all abilities, ages 6-12 is offered July 18 thru 21.
• Friday Night BBQ Series will be open to the public in the club house outdoor pavilion from July 8 thru July 29.
• This fall, The Fortress will offer “Nine and Stein,” a nine-hole, par 3 challenge event.
• The popular Cigar Open returns Thursday, October 6th.
The Fortress Eat & Play package includes 18 holes of golf with cart and a family style chicken dinner at Zehnder’s Restaurant; prices vary throughout the season. For public course rates for adults, seniors and juniors; tee times; events and membership information: (989) 652-0460 or 800-863-7999; or go to www.zehnders.com.