Course: West Grand Golf
Location: 6450 Raccoon River Dr, West Des Moines, IA 50266
Price: $8 for 18 holes.
Review: Well, it’s been 11 states. And just like that, my trip is already 1/5th completed. Now, by this point in the journey, a less professional reviewer than myself might say something like “wow, only 1/5th done?” or “how is that possible? This has felt like an eternity” or even “I slept in my car last night. I drove another 6 hours today. I’m tired. So tired. Tired of driving. Tired of eating nothing but Subway sandwiches for a week straight. Tired of these midwestern cookie-cutter ‘one-with-nature’ courses that use the ‘beautiful contours of the land’ to create a ‘relaxed but immersive’ mini-golf ‘experience.'”
I could say something like that, but I’m not that kind of reviewer. So here’s my actual review:
Did you know people from Iowa sure do love corn? I had no idea! That is, until I went to West Grand Golf miniature golf in Iowa! The 9-time winner of CityView’s “Best Mini Golf in Central Iowa” award, how could someone searching for the best mini golf course in America not go here? They’d have to go. They wouldn’t have a choice. And let me tell you, if you’re in the mood to see corn extending for miles in every direction, then West Grand Golf is the place for you. Like a corn maze that had filled up its maze portion with more corn, corn was everywhere! There was enough corn to feed an army. Enough corn to power a single biofuel car for days! And, don’t worry, because Iowa’s plentiful grain plants weren’t just used as scenery, they extended into the course itself – throughout the venue, wheat was strategically planted within the holes themselves, cleverly turning the environment into an obstacle (just like 127 Hours!). Also, the water hazards were pretty tricky (albeit, once again blue tinted).
However, I did have one pretty big complaint about West Grand Golf: Not. Enough. Corn. A course of this caliber needs (deserves) to be filled with corn. Hectares upon hectares of corn. Corn. More corn than is humanly comprehensible. Corn filling the blue tinted water. Corn filling the skies. Corn covering our bodies, replacing our weak skin with pure, impenetrable husk. Corn. Corn. Corn. Corn. Corn.
In addition, the course was pretty worn down and scuffed in places, making the holes a little slippery. It was a very unforgiving course. If you missed the hole by an inch, the ball kept rolling for another 4 feet. Which was kind of like getting your hand cut off because you stole bread from a fictional sultan in an ancient Arabian sultanate (and what is a mere loaf of bread to someone as wealthy as the sultan?). The punishment did not fit the crime.
In summary, West Grand Golf was a perfectly ordinary course in a unique location, but nothing really made it stand out. Its biggest sin was its own mediocrity.
Course Score: 53; Par – 45.
Pros: Popular date location; shaded oasis; good water hazards.
Cons: Worn down and slippery; simplistic course; scuffed in several areas; bland.