The Peninsula Golf Club is a full-length nine-hole course with straight fairways and large greenside traps. Tucked inside a residential community south of Merrick Road in Massapequa, Peninsula has the feel of a neighborhood park. It is a par-37 (two par-5s, one par-3) of 3,346 yards from the back tees, 3,108 from the middle. Like its neighbor eight miles to the west in Merrick, Peninsula is a few steps up from the shorter and less hazardous County courses on the South Shore, like Bay Park and North Woodmere. The distinctive feature here is the bunkering -- all of Peninsula's greens are guarded by deep grass pits that contain slivers of sand traps, some more severe than others.
Peninsula's two par-5s, similar in length and layout, line up next to each other, one greeting you at the start of the round and the other sending you on your way. The first hole measures 434 yards from the middle tees, the ninth 436. Both holes are influenced by the same bunker in the left rough, and each sports a second trap at the far end of the fairway.
The only difference between the two is that bad shots are a bit more troubling on #9, where the outer course fence runs up the entire right side and a mammoth trap protects the green's right. A large tree twisting up from the center of the trap has the potential to render some shots unplayable.
The second hole is a long par-4 with a green sloped back to front. The tilt of the green can be a source of frustration if you're trying to navigate it from either of the two large traps that await mid-irons gone astray. Holes 3 and 4 barely crack 300 yards, but the degree of difficulty is much greater on #3. Approach shots here can be the trickiest on the course thanks to a narrow green that's closely protected on its right by the course boundary. The fifth is a 377-yard par-4 that doesn't allow for overclubbing on its approach -- anything long will find the cart path or, worse, the perimeter fence.
The sixth hole briefly interrupts Peninsula's string of par-4s. It is the only par-3 on the course, a 151-yarder with some mounding on all sides of the target. Seven and eight play on the other side of a local street. Mounding around the long, narrow green on the 364-yard seventh can make for awkward lies, especially left, though you can easily find frustration in the contoured right rough as well.
HOLE(S) TO REMEMBER:
With its arrow-straight fairways, Peninsula lacks a truly distinctive hole. It does have one unique shot, however. The approach on #3 is one of the diciest shots on the course because it demands a tight squeeze onto a narrow green.
Long drivers can cut down the difficulty of the shot by leaving themselves with only a short pitch on this 309-yard par-4, but for those short off the tee (or playing from the 331-yard back tees), there is no good spot to miss with the short irons. The green is slightly elevated and runs away diagonally from the fairway. It slopes down off the left side toward the cart path, and the front is guarded by a cross-shaped bunker. On the right, a wooden rail fence pinches in close to the green. Any approach lost to that side is out of bounds. The green is deep and narrow -- even if you pass the test on the approach, you could still be facing a challenging lag putt.
AREA(S) TO AVOID:
Right-side bunkers on #2 and #9 are Peninsula's most treacherous. Trees block the center of both. The trap on #9 is mostly grass, but the tree is much bulkier, and overhanging branches can disrupt any thoughts of getting your ball way up in the air. Sand rings around a grass island in the bunker on #2, and generally, sand saves are harder to execute when trees and bushes block your view of the stick.
50 Nassau Road, Massapequa 11758
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