8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Water Tower Park is located in a beautiful park in Sarasota. The ambience from the Spanish moss hanging from the Live Oaks will make this experience memorable.
-Multiple concrete tees, signs (w/map, lines, and distance). As well as Alternate pin locations.
-This course is one of the early courses in Florida; there is a nostalgic feeling about playing there.
-DG Billboard with map of the course
-Beginner friendly, fun for all skill levels.
-Plays in and around the wooded area of the park.
-Good fun factor, well designed, and they maximized the use of this park.
-Lines vary from hole to hole. You'll be required to work your line around trees that are scattered throughout the fairway. You will also need to be mindful of the low ceiling formed by the canopy of trees.
-Good Distances for a wooded course. Range from 250 to 325 avg. There are a couple of holes that are 400+
-The trees are spacious enough, and the brush isn't thick. The risk of losing your disc here is low.
-Each fairway comes with its own challenge.
-The park was very clean, and well taken care of.
-Restrooms are available, as well as picnic tables, shelters and garbage cans. Also benches are available in case you need a break.
-Fairly easy to navigate, but a map will help you on a few of the holes. We did have to look around a couple of times, but it wasn't too bad.
-This course is a popular course, so finding someone to hook up with shouldn't be a problem.
Cons: -The main one would be all of the walking paths that meander throughout the course. The park goers, for the most part, seem to be fairly aware of Disc Golf.
- (This is an "is what it is" factor, not held against it) The terrain was fairly flat. Then again, this is coastal region so that's the way it is.
-The course isn't in the worst neighborhood, but I was told that it's not the best neighborhood either. However, I was also told that nothing major has ever happened here, and there aren't many issues with the park. There are, however, a number of disc golfers out there. So if you feel leery, you'll be in good company. It wouldn't stop me from playing here.
I really had a good time here. The fun factor was terrific, and the park itself is very enjoyable to walk through. As has been said before, this is a must play course. There is a nice stretch of Disc Golf courses to be played in this area, this isn't one to miss. No special footwear is needed; my Nike's did just fine. I played in May, so I can't really say how the bug situation is. If you come from 75, you'll pass plenty of places to grab a bite before/after you play here. Nothing in the immediate vicinity of Water Tower Park though.
If memory serves correctly, it appeared to be fairly balanced between right/left-handed shots. It's tight, but not to frustrating. Some of my frustration came from a low branch that I wasn't paying attention to, or playing too close to the edge. But it wasn't enough to take away from the fun I was having. Even if you get deflected, you can still salvage your shot with a good approach shot. Go, and have fun here. You'll be glad you did.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
loved it- great course
Pros: -great fairways, challenging shapes
-plenty of chances for birdies, but not a 'gimmie' course at all
-pretty good mix of open shots in the beginning and end of round
Cons: -i'm not one to care about a rough neighborhood, but while i was there a pretty spooked guy came out of the hole 5 area saying there was a pit-bull roaming around not on a leash- and it tried to bite him but he hit it with his walking pole... so that had me on edge since i was alone, but within 3 or 4 minutes there were literally 2 police cars driving around looking for it...
-some clueless park users were standing right near the basket for hole 18 using their metal detectors. nice enough people, but i had to wait for what seemed like forever
Other Thoughts: In all, i really enjoyed my rounds at this park. the layout was real low and level- with quite a few holes having a slight left to right which is great shot to learn that doesn't come automatically for beginners.
a lot of local players around even on a weekday.
i really liked the layout and the park scenery- with the streams and etc... definitely worth playing if you're in sarasota.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
The Original SW Florida Course
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course is well designed and has a good flow to it, for the most part. Helper arrows on the baskets, and some next tee signs help with navigation.
More than enough benches, tables, garbage cans and a nice pavillion.
A well established league who host great tournaments!
The course is usually very clean and well maintained.
Cons: The course is not in the best of nieghborhoods, but it has been seemingly improving over the years. I have seen open prostitution and drug sales in this park.
Other Thoughts: The course is heavily played and as a result of this it has greatly improved the park and the area, around it.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Florida Fun in a Discount Size
Pros: Teepads, flow, landscape
Cons: Interaction with other park activities
Other Thoughts: North Watertower Park is a classic Florida course, but without the water and undergrowth. Set in a relatively small municipal park in a modest Sarasota neighborhood, this course is exactly what you should think of when you think of the typical Florida course. It features nice teepads, decent signage, a flat but distinctive Florida landscape of palms and salt bush, and holes that require thought and control, but with a little opportunity for big arms to show off. There's nothing particularly distinctive out here; no big water holes, or holes playing out to a beach, and not much of that Florida wildness either. It's just a sort of small, very well laid out every day course in one of the most visited regions of the country, the Florida Suncoast.
In terms of acreage, North Watertower is small, but it doesn't play that way. Every hole has two distinct basket placements, and many have two teepads also. While woods and foliage are a factor on most holes, there are a few holes that anyone would consider open, and at least two that are long enough to be more than par 3 by most standards. There's no overlap or crossing among holes, yet because the park is relatively small, flow is totally intuitive and wayfinding is a breeze. And while this isn't necessarily a course where you'll need every disc in your bag, shot shaping and course management are still needed skills out here. Most of the holes have flavor, and the varying pin positions change things up sufficiently.
The only challenges are interaction with other park users, as a walking/jogging trail winds across the fairway of several holes, and the two long holes on the course are also the only field in the park, and thus can be used by others that are oblivious to the flying discs. Numbers on the baskets would be a plus too. Overall, North Watertower is a worthy outing if you're in the area; it's always fun to fling 'em Florida style.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Excellent layout
Lot's of foliage and canopy for difficulty
Plenty of benches
Cons: Backs up to a rough neighborhood
Pedestrians and cyclists can come into play on the sidewalk
Other Thoughts: This course is one of my top 5's. It is mostly shaded. The holes are technical and well laid out. The variety of shots keeps it interesting. The only thing missing is a true water hole. I suspect hole 10 started out as a water hole but has been empty since I started playing this course 3 years ago.
3 of 5 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Listen to the dozen people below!
Pros: Course is a must play in the Sarasota area.
- multiple tees and pin positions, some holes even had 3 tee areas.
- Great course design and use of land, course offers a good variety of shots left vs right, as well as some roller and tomahawk opportunities. Some wide open holes, but most holes play around stategically placed trees and foiliage.
Course also has a decent variety in distances with holes from 168' to 510'
- Navigation is easy, but there is also a map at the kiosk, if you want to carry one you can print one off this site
- Good tee signs
- good bathroom facilities and a playground for the kiddies.
Cons: - no method to tell which pin position the basket is in. (most can be seen with only a little walking, or you can see the PVC and eliminate one position to know it is in the other)
- Hole 1 throws over a bike path, near a play area on the left, and down by houses on the right side, which can be a small safety problem, but it is not a major issue.
- In the current pin position, holes 12-16 were all straight shot after straight shot.
Other Thoughts: On hole 6 if you over throw from the right side you can end up in a stinky creek. Chance of disc loss was moderately low, greatest chance of disc loss was hole 9 down the right side foliage.
Play the course in the morning or dusk because the open areas are sweltering in the afternoon. Bring Water!
When trying to find the course don't look for the watertower, you will not see it until you enter the park.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Beware of the Black Widow Spider Thong!!!!
Pros: 1) Nice signs that include hole #, distances, multiple tee listings and alternate pin locations and distances, and par.
2) Course map is available at the kiosk at the first tee along with other postings of tournaments and such.
3) Big picnic table, garbage, water fountain (aka Bubbler to those from Wisconsin), and bathrooms available at the first tee.
4) Benches and garbage are available throughout the course and there are plenty of them around. Not every tee but most tees have them.
5) Turf is in good condition on the first few holes and Hole 9, 10, and 18. The wooded holes are very sandy soils and fairly clean. They are covered by little leaves and act just like mulch would.
6) Very nice canopy of trees over most of the course. The shade would certainly be nice in the summer too. The canopy acts to create some low ceiling shots on a few holes.
7) Course has a mix of open holes with scattered trees, holes with tight turns, and some straight tightly wooded holes. It is very well balanced.
8) White markers in the ground were visible (although I didnt see them on every hole), not sure if I missed them or if they are nearly overgrown.
9) There is a balance of shot shaping required on this course, there are a few holes that are dead straight, some left to right, some right to left, and even a few with S curves required to be close to the basket.
10) Park is very nice and well maintained. It has the appropriate facilities and it also has a playground, a walking path, a pavilion with grills available and picnic tables.
11) While I was playing there were cops driving through the park. They actually went right across the lawn down the 9th fairway and turned around the corner on Hole #7.
12) Very clear fairway definition and very little underbrush. There was very little palmettos shrubs and other low growth, as is usually seen on DG course in Florida. The shot requirements are very fair and do not require a whole lot of luck, which is a true test of a well designed course.
13) Course is a very quick play. I got there at 8:30 and played in just under 1 hour, and that was the first time I have played this course and I was writing notes the whole time for this review.
14) Course design is wonderful. It uses the best areas of the course. I starts out open and then works its way around the inner portion of the park with hole #9 finishing back int he parking lot. Then Hole 10 goes back into the inner part of this park and Hole 18 exits the woods and back to the lot. Just an all around well designed course on a pretty cool property.
15) This course flows very easily and is very easy to follow because of the tee signs and the few navigational signs directing you to the next tee. The course is well worn in from traffic and is easy to follow the walk paths through the whole course.
16) Course is pretty forgiving to beginners because of the lack of underbrush, and the fairways being very well defined. Half of the holes are somewhat open, but the other half in the woods are pretty forgiving. It will still challenge the beginner.
17) Ribbon is placed on some baskets, that is helpful despite being tough to see from time to time.
18) There is a nice variety in plant material. Tall mature pines, individual palms, hardwoods, and some lower growth lke Palmettos. The beauty of this course is there is just enough of everything to alter your shots. You haveto be aware of everything on this course.
Cons: 1) 12 tee is also the walking path. I understand the cost savings, and the necessity of its location, but I would prefer it was its own entity and away from the path.
2) Course does not have any elevation changes only slight undulation. I know it is Florida, but I would like to see some bigger undulation on a course. I don't think manually created mounds are a good option so it is just a factor of the property.
3) Water is not available on this property except perhaps during the rainy season on Hole #10. The retention area may hold water but right now it is completely dry. The water on the perimeter is in play but only if you have an errant shot. It takes only a simple hyzer to avoid the creek.
4) Police patrol through the park lead me to believe this course may have some issues because of the neighborhood? Not sure just an assumption I guess. No vandlism is apparent however.
5) Erosion occuring around teepads from overthrows. The pads could use some sand or something solid like pavers or flagstone would help alleviate this erosion of soil away from the edges of the teepads.
6) Walkpath is in the way on a few holes and you tee off from it on Hole #12. I didn't see anyone on the path while I played these holes but on a really nice day I could see a lot of people walking and riding bikes through this park.
7) No distance listed by the amateur tees.
Other Thoughts: I really enjoyed this course. I got there early in the morning when I love playing disc golf. Hardly anyone was around, just a couple walkers and dog walkers. I enjoyed how you start out with the more open holes working your way all the way around the park, then the final 9 holes you go back and go through the inner part of the park going back and forth through the woods and then working your way out of the woods. The design was great, the maintenance was obvious, and the challenge was there without being unfairly difficult. Luck was needed on ocassion but skill is a bigger part in scoring well here. Executing the shots was your only answer for birdie. Sure you might get some knock downs, but you are more than likely to have a chance to make par on this course. There is a lot of tree canopy and a lot of variety in both plant material and shot shaping. I highly recommend this course and I consider it the best course south of Tampa/St. Pete on the west coast of Florida. It is way better than the Fort Myers courses, and still a little bit better than North Charlotte Regional Park. I may have this rated higher than many of the other reviewers, I just liked it for so many reasons and if I had to choose from Bay Oaks, Bonita Springs, FGCU, North Fort Myers, Lakeview Park, or North Charlotte I would choose this course everytime even though I enjoyed Lakeview, North Fort Myers, and Bonita.
Just don't let the Black Widow Spider Thong get you. If you find it, you get a prize, just do not touch it!
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Definitely Play This Course If You Have the Chance
Pros: -Signs are well displayed and very informative. Each sign has all of the info you could possibly need about the hole layout and position of the next tee. If it's a bit of a walk to the next tee there is another sign halfway making sure you don't lose your way.
-Course layout is very fun to play with well defined fairways cutting through all of the foliage.
-As mentioned in other reviews most of the holes are layed out to favor precision rather than distance making for a more challenging game. There is still a fair amount of long open holes to play for those who like the long bombs.
-The concrete tee pads are all large and in good condition with amateur pads on the necessary holes. Each tee has a bench and a trash can.
-The beautiful foliage and all of the animals (read: squirrels) really add to the experience.
-Both times I played the course there seemed to be quite a lot of people at the park, one time the parking lot was full, yet the park never felt crowded nor did I feel rushed on any of the holes. I had to wait for some people to find their discs in the shared rough but it just gave me a reason to sit on one of the many benches and catch a rest before moving on.
Cons: - I played the course twice during my week and a half stay in Sarasota and the second time I played was after a night outing. I could tell by the left over glow sticks attached to the baskets and signs. I think there may have been luminaries used during this event as well because the course was littered with all sorts of brown paper sacks filled with sand, but I didn't find any candles in the few that I checked. None of this was there on my first playthrough so I assume it was related to the night round and just chocked the mess up to them not returning to clean up yet because I was there at around 7 am. The bags were just odd.
-There was a couple of homeless guys hanging out on a bench at one hole. It just seemed a bit shady but it wasn't a big deal really.
Other Thoughts: -When researching parks in the Sarasota area before my trip I ran into the name "Sarasota Sky Pilots" a lot. I figured it was just a small club and paid no mind. In the 4 times I played golf on my trip I met about 12 different members of this club. they were all very friendly and I even tagged along with a couple at a different course.
-The restrooms seemed fine when I was there. No more dirty than any other public restroom in my opinion.
-Both times I played this course I saw the fellow selling discs with his dogs. At first I thought "great, tee 10 is surrounded by 3 frigging dogs (I'm more of a cat person)," but these dogs are super well behaved and don't really even look at you. The prices were decent for his discs and I even bought myself a Pro Pig.
-As I stated in the title, if you're in or around Sarasota you MUST play this course.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Don't skip this one!
-Easy parking. Pleasant atmosphere. Clean and well groomed park. Park benches a plenty.
-Practice basket next to 10's tee, with a very long park bench for socializing.
-Excellent tee signs and to-next-tee arrows. Did not have any trouble locating baskets/tees.
-Great hole variation: A fair mix of open holes, wooded holes, long holes, Dog legs and every combination.
-Many drives start in open fairways that dive into wooded area, favoring precision instead of distance.
-Many holes have alternate tee pads, but are either natural or make use of the walking paths.
-Many holes have alternate Pin locations. But locals told me they rarely change. Also, for reasons i do not remember, hole 8 is now permanently in the long pin location.
-Hole 9 is the longest (510 ft) and plays past the water tower, which has barbed fencing surrounding it. But unless you have a completely errant throw, nobody should be landing a disc inside the fence.
-My favorite hole # 4 plays off tee through tight fairway diving into woods with narrow fairways to both basket locations, but abruptly ending by some tree obstacles that requires a skillful approach or precise putt.
-The two water hazards on 6 and 7 are completely recoverable and make them unique to the rest of the course.
-It's a tight course, where many fairways share the same rough zones. Play was interrupted a handful of times by someone throwing back to their intended fairway.
-Walking paths are used as both fairways and tee pads on some holes. While most people in the park are golfers, there are allot of locals walking babies in strollers. This is the biggest factor preventing me from rating this course higher.
-Dirty restrooms. Not that big of a deal. But don't bring a change of clothes and expect to use the restrooms as a changing booth.
-Players camping on hole 10, practicing drives I guess. Not that big deal, again, just a nuisance.
-This is one of the all around funnest courses I've played at due to its mix of hole styles. The course design flaws are preventing me from rating it higher than a 3.5, however I'd give this course a 5.0 for fun-factor.
-Local club is very active. My first time playing this course was overwhelmed by the local club members for their Sunday events. I would have participated if not for being with my girlfriends family.
-Guy selling discs sits on a lawn chair between 9 and 10 with his dogs (very well trained). Looked to have a box of Innova labeled by name. Didn't check prices.
-Sketchy location although nothing that should stop anybody from playing this course. I did however have an interesting run in. While on hole 8, i see a white, beat-up, Cadillac driving through the park on the foot paths, the front bumper hanging off the thing. The man and woman playing behind me called 911. We continued playing and when i got to hole 13, the people in the car we sitting on a park bench by 14's tee (clearly intoxicated) and had parked their car in 15's fairway, right next to the basket. They shortly got up and left, driving the rest of the footpath out. The police showed up 15 minutes later. Of course, this was the day i failed to bring my camera.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Good park course
Pros: -Concrete tees (but a bit small)
-Looping 9's layout
-Good course signage
-Nice variety and balance of shot shapes
Cons: -Neighborhood a little sketchy, but not a big deal
-A bit compact in places
-Walking path comes into play on a couple of holes
Other Thoughts: Here's a course that makes the most of a small site. They've put 18 holes into a fairly small area, but it seems to work well as the compact areas are in the more densely wooded area of the park where play of holes, while close in proximity, are less apt to interfere with each other. There are, however, some safety issues in regards to the walking path that winds through the park. Several holes play along this path system and non-playing pedestrians can be in play. The general layout of the course is a double loop of 9 holes, meaning that the front 9 and the back 9 start and end at the parking lot. This allows players to stop for bathroom breaks, grab supplies from their cars, etc...
Most holes feature multiple tees to provide for an appropriate challenge for more players. Most holes (I think) feature multiple sleeve for moving the baskets to alternate positions. Tee signs are well done and provide ample information about the hole, though they could use some type of mechanism to show which location the basket is in as it's not readily apparent from the tee on some of the longer holes. Course navigation signage is done well and appreciated.
Overall, the course is fun to play and requires a variety of golf skills to score well. It's dominated by the technical, wooded, finesse type of play, but there are a few more open holes that allow you to open up and throw hard as well. An enjoyable course to play and worth stopping if you find yourself in Sarasota.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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