If you haven’t seen Drumm Farm recently, it’s almost as if you haven’t seen Drumm Farm at all.
The 7,121-yard course located in the middle of Independence has been a staple of Kansas City golf, renowned for its excellent conditions and charming views.
With its acquisition by GreatLife Golf & Fitness, Drumm Farm has retained its top-notch golf courses and has added many new amenities, including a fitness center, new clubhouse and FootGolf.
“All the changes taking place… it’s cool what GreatLife is doing,” said PGA General Manager Ross Judy. “They are putting a lot of money into improving everything, adding a fitness center, new carpeting, new bathrooms, putting GPS on all the carts… even renovating the bar.”
The addition of a FootGolf course is attracting new people to Drumm Farm.
“Adding the FootGolf… I love it,” Judy said. “It opened two weeks ago and we’ve seen an array of different types of people: families, couples, college-aged kids.”
FootGolf combines golf with soccer for a fun and challenging new experience and is easily accessible to players of any skill level.
“We’re seeing a completely different clientele for FootGolf,” he said. “Not all people are going to golf and it’s easier to succeed at FootGolf. Everyone can kick a ball. I think the downside of golf sometimes is that people take it too seriously. I don’t think that will happen with FootGolf.”
Golfers who want to enjoy a traditional round of golf will always have a good time on the well maintained par-72 championship course designed by Dr. Michael Hurdzan or the par 30, 1,674-yard executive course, both of which feature Zoysia grass.
The championship course layout remains the same and will provide a challenge for different kinds of golfers. Long hitters will enjoy taking on the 548-yard par-5 number 7, the longest, most difficult hole on the course with bunkers guarding the fairway and a creek through the middle. Finesse golfers will have their hands full coming down the stretch on the back nine.
“I think the most unique hole is #15,” Judy said. “It makes you place your shots. You have to stay accurate and play smart. The closing holes are what I think are unique and more different than most courses. All are target type shots. You’ve got to play smart more than just hitting it as hard as you can.”
It’s also an unusually scenic course for being in the middle of town.
“On number six, you can look right and look left and you can see the whole golf course,” explained long-time regular Tom McGraw. “In the background is St. Mark’s church. It has an elevated tee and it gives you an overall view of the whole facility. It’s very scenic. The facility has been very well kept.”
Among the changes brought by GreatLife is the addition of the fitness center, which opened in February. The full service facility offers state-of-the-art equipment with 24-hour access included in all memberships.
“It’s a new facility for folks that like to work out,” McGraw said. “There are machines made for us old codgers. Instead of going to the driving range I go work on machines for 10 or 15 minutes and I’m good to go.”
Combining fitness with golf is part of GreatLife’s philosophy, and they do it at an affordable price.
“There are six or seven tiers of membership, starting with fitness only at $19.99 per month, all the way up to full family memberships with everything for $179.99 per month, and everything in between,” Judy said. “Fitness at that price, you can’t beat that. If you break down the numbers, for a family membership with golf and cart for around $2000 per year with no hidden fees, you can’t beat that.”
Family memberships include access for any family under the age of 25, even for kids who have gone off to college. Most GreatLife memberships at Drumm Farm include fitness, golf, and FootGolf while some membership plans also include playing privileges at other GreatLife facilities, including Liberty Hills, Staley Farms, Leavenworth, River Oaks, and Canyon Farms.
With many renovations to the facilities have also come some staffing changes.
“We have a lot of new faces,” explained Judy, who came to Drumm Farm in March. “They bring new energy. Most of the managers are new. They bring some new ideas. Sometimes in golf you get stuck in your ways. We don’t want to get complacent.”
Alex Pisano is the new teaching professional for the Chuck Evans Golf Academy, while Megan Stutler joins Drumm Farm as a personal trainer in the fitness center.
One of the things that hasn’t changed at Drumm Farm is the membership.
“I know a lot of the people there,” McGraw said. “It’s like a family situation. They’re all very friendly, very social. Everybody gets along really well. It’s a nice situation. There aren’t any strangers there.”
“That’s the great part,” Judy said. “The membership here has not changed. They have welcomed us with open arms. They are excited to see some of the improvements and renovations. They are all very active here. We see a lot of the same people and that helps me and whoever else is just starting.”
There are a lot of positive changes at Drumm Farm, and McGraw has advice for people who may want to see for themselves.
“I would probably tell them it’s very economical,” he said. “The course is always kept up very well, but still the championship course is very challenging. It’s a very friendly place. It’s well worthwhile to come out and enjoy the day. It’s a very friendly place.
“It’s just a fun place to go.”
For more information about Drumm Farm, visit their website at www.drummfarmgolfclub.com