Shannon Crabb Earns Golf Course Superintendent of the Year Recognition
The Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites Employees were recently honored at their annual conference held at Unicoi State Park in the beautiful Bavarian village of Helen, Georgia. The Awards recognized the outstanding efforts of folks who are responsible for the day-to-day park operations. Once again, Shannon Crabb has been chosen as Golf Course Superintendent of the Year.
Just minutes north of Athens, the home of the University of Georgia, Victoria Bryant State Park is one of the best-kept secrets in the park system. Its Highland Walk Golf Course is both a beautiful trek among the flora and fauna of the Peach State and a challenge to play.
The Denis Griffiths (ASGCA) design is laid out on steep rolling hills with broad crowned Bermuda fairways leading to generous sloping Bermuda greens. But don’t let the natural beauty of this pristine design fool you, Highland Walk is the most challenging of the eight state park courses that require impeccable shot-making to score well.
“Very few golf courses are blessed with such natural beauty and diversity as Highland Walk,” says Doug Hollandsworth, Founder of Georgia Golf Trail. “For the most part, the fairways are spacious, but the variety of shots makes this course so special to play time and time again. Depending on the tee shot and pin position, each hole can play completely differently from one day to the next.”
In 2020, Highland Walk was named one of GolfNow’s “Top 25 courses in Georgia”. Considering the list includes Augusta National-‘Home of the Masters,’ East Lake Golf, Club-site of the season-ending FedEx Cup, and TPC Sugarloaf, home to a PGA Tour Champions annual tournament, it is in pretty good company. Long-time course manager Bill Schuster credits the Top 25 listing and its excellent condition to Golf Course Superintendent Shannon Crabb. The course hosts more than 21,000 rounds per year while Shannon and his crew continue to make numerous improvements, including rebuilding all sand traps, revamping the aeration process, reevaluating chemical applications, repairing cart paths, new accessible parking, and removing underbrush from the tall pines and hardwoods that flank the fairways.
For those who might want a ‘stay& play’ option, players can reserve the Bluebird Cottage, which can sleep as many as eight. There also are golf and camping packages available throughout the park.
Victoria Bryant State Park’s Highland Walk is one of the many magnificent offerings on the Georgia Golf Trail-a selection of both golf resorts and clubs scattered throughout the Peach State from the mountains to the plains to the Atlantic Ocean.