Tidewater Golf Club : North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

TIDEWATER GOLF CLUB, ONE of the top-rated courses in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, offers magnificent views of the Intracoastal Waterway, saltwater marshes and the Atlantic Ocean. Referred to as “pure as the ocean breezes that blow across it,” with five sets of tees, Tidewater offers a competitive course for professionals and high handicappers alike.

The 18-hole course features two signature holes, the third and the 13th. Wind and pin location on the third, a tricky par 3 ranging from 93 to 157 yards, will determine club selection. Three large bunkers jealously guard the front of the three-tiered green, and marsh awaits balls that stray long and left. Accurate shots at the flagstick will be rewarded, but, if you take the easy way out and land on the wrong level, putting will be difficult.

The par 5 13th, which plays from 372 yards to 539 yards, offers a view of an ocean inlet. You must keep your drive left because the fairway slopes to the right. If you lay up on your second shot to the left-front collection area, you might have a difficult chip to the putting surface.

Designed and built by South Carolina native Ken Tomlinson, the course reflects his “respect for classic turn-of-the-century golf courses” that are “created in harmony with the natural landscape.”

The black tees at Tidewater provide a 7,078-yard challenge, while the jade tees play at 4,615 yards. In between, the gold tees play at 6,630 yards, the silver tees at 6,614 and the copper tees at 5,097.

The course, an example of how “human artistry can mold Nature to achieve a harmonious balance between form and function,” challenges players to make strategic decisions, take risks and use their shot-making creativity.

Lessons are available at Tidewater from PGA golf professionals. Players can enjoy the $2.5 million, 18,000-square-foot clubhouse, which features a full-service golf shop, private meeting room, owners-only private parlor and men’s and women’s locker rooms. The Clubhouse Grille serves lunch and dinner and has a fully stocked lounge.

The course is part of a 500-acre plantation built amid pristine forests and coastal bluffs. Golf packages are available for an unforgettable vacation that includes luxurious accommodations, tee times, daily housekeeping services and convenient on-site check-in. Two-and three-bedroom villas are available with access to the clubhouse and a state-of-the-art swim and racquet club.

The serenity and natural beauty of the course sets it apart from others on the Grand Strand.

A Helping Hand : Tidewater Charity Golf Tournament

A five-day event that will feature a fierce battle on the golf course and raise money for Horry County, South Carolina, charities is set for this September.

The third annual Tidewater Charity Golf Tournament, part of the Sunbelt Senior Tour, will draw some of the area’s top senior pros September 4 through September 6, but it will also provide needed financial support for the Autism Advocate Foundation and North Strand Helping Hand.

Activities get underway Sept. 2 at the Tidewater Golf Club in North Myrtle Beach with a free golf clinic, a trick-shot demonstration, a long-drive exhibition and the ever-popular skills contest, all open to the public, making for a fun-filled day of golf that benefits the entire community.

The competition will be fierce once the tourney starts Sept.4. Last year,10 Sunbelt Senior Tour players obtained their 2007 Champions Tour Cards and the top two competitors in the 2006 Tidewater Charity Golf Tournament qualified for the 2007 U.S. Senior Open at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wisconsin. Three players were highlighted on the Golf Channel. The winner’s purse is estimated to be $10,000, with a total purse of $40,000.

An exciting pro/am tournament always draws big crowds, and this year will be no exception. A total of 102 amateurs will be matched with 34 professionals competing for prizes. An awards luncheon, catered by Outback Steakhouse, will follow the tournament.

The Tidewater Golf Club offers an intricate yet beautiful challenge for most players. The par-72, 7,078-yard course features a pair of signature holes, the par 3 third and the part 5 13th.

“The reason for the tournament is to raise money for the two charities,” explains Tournament Director Bill Pearson. “These charities work hard to help so many people that there is little time left over for fundraising, and that is where we can help.”

The five-day event, which continues to grow in size and stature each year, is expected to raise $30,000.

Tidewater Golf Club & Plantation

In an era when the neighbor-helping-neighbor concept has all but disappeared, is it possible
for an entire community to band together to make a difference? The answer is a resounding
“yes,” at least at Tidewater Golf Club and Plantation on South Carolina’s Grand Strand.

Community activism is not required of the homeowners in Tidewater, but they just can’t seem to do enough to help others. It all starts with the homeowners association board of directors.

“When a property is under construction, the developer markets that community aggressively, but, when it is near completion, the big marketing push stops and newer developments get the spotlight,” says former HOA President Bill Pearson. “We wanted to continue the buzz at Tidewater.”

Cynthia Stanley, a local real estate agent and Tidewater resident, agrees. “One thing that makes Tidewater different is leadership,” she says. “We have a strong board that was formed when the developer started transferring things to the owners.”

She adds that the Tidewater HOA is in excellent financial shape, having been judged by auditors to be one of the strongest associations in the area. Pearson agrees and attributes at least part of the association’s success to “a lack of micro-management” and the fact that meetings are open to all Tidewater owners and the board invites input from all property owners.

“The community is involved in everything the board does,” he says. What exactly do the residents of Tidewater do to maintain their stature on the Grand Strand? They are involved in an array of worthy activities, including Meals on Wheels, tutoring and raising money for a variety of non-profi t organizations. Recently, members of this North Myrtle Beach community organized the Bahama Island Resort South Carolina Senior Open at Tidewater, raising $20,000 to help build a beach access crossover that complies with the provisions of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Held in early September, the Open offered a golf clinic, putting and chipping contests, raffle tickets and 50/50 tickets. The tournament itself, with a total purse of $35,000, was a sellout, drawing a full fi eld of 31 pros and 93 amateurs, and more than 100 generous sponsors, including Bahama Island Resort, T&J Development and Oceanfront Real Estate, chipped in.

Stanley, while not a golfer, was anxious to be part of the event because of its goal to raise money for the ramp over the sand dunes. She points out that projects such as this one can cost from $20,000 to $50,000, depending on the height of the dunes. She sponsored the 13th hole.

While the event was produced by the Tidewater HOA, other businesses got involved in a big way. Outback Steakhouse, for example, contributed 180 meals for the awards ceremony, and Outback employees volunteered their services for setup, cooking, serving and cleanup. Tidewater again rose to the occasion when the North Myrtle Beach Rescue Squad needed a financial boost. Tidewater’s residents sprang into action in July, organizing a block party that raised $12,000. “There are hundreds more smaller projects that don’t get the press,” Pearson says.

Many people move to the Grand Strand to enjoy the good life. The residents of Tidewater Golf Club and Plantation take that concept a step further by striving to make life better for others. We can all learn from that.