Striking up summer fun

Published 6:00 am Saturday, July 11, 2009

Strike Fore in Pelham is advertised as the place for baseball, golf and more and if the economy has changed your vacation into a staycation, Strike Fore offers you the chance to enjoy one of six famous golf courses without ever leaving Pelham.

Owners Rich and Elise Klimpt said, along with their business partner David Shepherd, family fun is just what they hoped to provide when they opened Strike Fore six and a half years ago.

Strike Fore offers both 18 and nine hole miniature golf courses, a golf simulator and batting cages. Batting lessons are available by appointment from Ron McNeely, a former major league baseball player, who Rich Klimpt describes as, “very talented and great with the kids.”

The golf simulator offers players the chance to virtually play six popular courses from all over the country including Firestone Country Club in Ohio and Pebble Beach in California.

“The most popular course by far is Pebble Beach.,” Rich said. “We have more visitors who play that course than any of the others.”

The Klimpts said the wide variety of entertainment options keeps business constant throughout the year.

“In the spring, we have lots of action in the batting cages. Summer and fall bring more folks out to play miniature golf, and the winter months bring more devoted golfers to try our simulator when it’s too cold to play on their favorite outdoor courses,” Rich said.

My family enjoys the miniature golf courses after the sun goes down in the summer. “Even the most budget conscious families can still come out and play our short course,” Elise said. “Nine holes cost only $2.50 per person. The course can be played in 30 minutes or you can stretch out your playing time for even more fun.”

Strike Fore’s good–natured atmosphere seems to mirror the owners themselves.

When I asked Rich how long he and Elise had been married, he said, “Twenty-two years almost, I think.” And then shouted to Elise who was helping a customer at the snack bar, “Hey, what’s your name, won’t we have been married 22 years on our next anniversary?”

Elise laughed and said, “That’s right — 22 years. At least you know how long we’ve been married — even if you can’t remember my name!”

To meet Rich and Elise, or to take the most inexpensive trip you’ll ever find to amazing golf courses in Florida, California and Hawaii via their simulator, visit Strike Fore on Highway 31 in Pelham.