TravelJuly 19, 2010

My Town: Fred Funk

Historic landmarks and a diverse mix of courses make Maryland an enjoyable destination for golfers

In the Baltimore and Washington, D.C. area, TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm is one of Funk's favorites.

In the Baltimore and Washington, D.C. area, TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm is one of Funk's favorites.

There isn't one spot you can pick to set up camp and really hit all of the state. Finding a place to stay near Annapolis isn't a bad choice. First of all, it's beautiful there. And you're about halfway between D.C. and Ocean City.

Of course, staying in Ocean City isn't bad either. There are lots of different hotels on the water that offer spectacular views. Spouses can just chill out on the beach while you go play golf. And you really can't go wrong in Baltimore. Try to stay near the Inner Harbor, as there are a lot of neat restaurants and attractions available.

COURSES

People don't necessarily think of Maryland as a golf destination, but there are several courses around the state that are a lot of fun. Cumberland CC, in the northwest corner, is a course that's fantastic. I used to play it when I competed in PGA section pro-ams and everyone had a good time. Just before the Pennsylvania line, a little farther east in Hagerstown, is Fountain Head CC. It's private, but if you can find a way to get on, it's worth the effort. It's a neat Donald Ross layout.

Further south, as you head toward Baltimore and the Washington, D.C. area, the new TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm is really good. The changes to some of the holes are outstanding. The fescue and natural areas look great. It's a much harder layout now, as I'm sure the rest of the Champions Tour guys are going to see first-hand when the Constellation Energy Senior Players Championship is held there in October.

Along the Eastern Shore, Ocean City has become a real destination spot for golfers. It's about a three-hour drive from Baltimore and D.C. I haven't played all the courses there, but Ocean City GC and Ocean Pines G&CC are two of the originals, and they still stand out in my mind as good places for golfers of any skill.

WHERE TO STAY

There isn't one spot you can pick to set up camp and really hit all of the state. Finding a place to stay near Annapolis isn't a bad choice. First of all, it's beautiful there. And you're about halfway between D.C. and Ocean City.

Of course, staying in Ocean City isn't bad either. There are lots of different hotels on the water that offer spectacular views. Spouses can just chill out on the beach while you go play golf. And you really can't go wrong in Baltimore. Try to stay near the Inner Harbor, as there are a lot of neat restaurants and attractions available.

It's hard to beat the Washington, D.C./Baltimore area for a variety of attractions, including Great Falls Park (right) and the Washington Monument (left). (Courtesy of IStock Photo)