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River Oaks traces its origin to 1925 when the course was constructed as a nine-hole private golf club. Rumored to have been designed by an old Scotsman, the layout was expanded to 18 holes in 1992. That same year, the club loosened its restrictions and began allowing public play.
The course occupies rolling land that is heavily wooded. The front nine plays a bit longer while the back side meanders along the Sandusky River. The greens feature a number of undulations and roll quick and true.
When the new nine holes were constructed, they were mixed in with the original nine. The result is an engaging layout that successfully blends the old with the new. On the front nine, holes 1, 7, 8 and 9 are from the original design. On the back, Nos. 10, 11, 12, 17 and 18 are the holdovers.
The 575-yard, par 5 No. 7 is the signature hole at River Oaks. A solid drive sets up a second shot over a creek and up a hill. The approach is played to a blind green with plenty of movement.
The 210-yard, par 3 No. 18 is one of the toughest finishing holes you’ll find. It plays uphill to an undulating green. Many a $5 Nassau has been won and lost here.
The 360-yard No. 10 is a fantastic par 4 that requires a good drive to set up a very difficult approach to the elevated green.