Save Muny - Lions Municipal Golf Course

For all the discussion around municipal courses being re-designed or renovated (i.e. Winter park, Goat Hill, Bobby Jones Muny, Jax Beach Golf Club), the next course to discuss is Lions Municipal Golf Course in Austin, TX.

Some of you might have heard of this course as there have been a couple Matt Ginella specials on GC Morning Drive featuring Ben Crenshaw explaining the current battle between the University of Texas and the City of Austin as to weather develop the course or extend the lease of the land to the city to keep the land as a green space and public golf course.

The lease to the city is up in May 2019 and at that point it’s up to either deep pockets from private donors who love this course just as much as Ben and I do, or to the City of Austin to cut a deal with the University of Texas to save the course. If dreams do come true and the course is saved, Coore & Crenshaw has committed to returning the course to the original routing and do a complete renovation of the course which should have every golfer chomping at the bit. To my knowledge there isn’t a public and very affordable Coore/Crenshaw course that’s at a city center which would make Lion’s an unbelievable option for great Texas golf.

The potential re-design has me fired up and I am very hopeful that it happens for everyone to enjoy a $30 Coore/Crenshaw course. After seeing the success of Goat Hill, Winter Park, etc., it leaves me hopeful that Lions will be able to pull through and this historic golf course will stay open. For golfers who are looking to make a trip down to the Lone Star State to play golf, I hope that you would add Lions to your list of stops as it might not be around to enjoy for that much longer.


Put together a golf trip for a group of guys from college earlier this year and we came down to Austin during the height of all of the hurricane weather. This group of guys still has the mindset that difficult golf courses are what make for “fun” golf trips. I tried my hardest to pitch the Lion’s out there but not many were interested, which to me was very disappointing. We opted playing River Place, which was fun but technically way more than most of our group even wanted which makes me wonder… What drives people to think that golf has to be played on tough courses? Also the model for Goat Hill Park was an interesting one.

I for one hope Lion’s lives on, will be interesting to follow what happens next year.

At a little over 5,800 yards tipped out, Lion’s is insanely fun and caters to all skill levels. I can see why most wouldn’t want to come play it at that length but I find that when you have to leave driver in the bag off the tee on most holes, games can get very interesting and can really test your game.

This may be a hot-take, but I think that short courses help you better your game for the “tough” long courses. The shorter the course, generally the better the scores, thus you walk away feeling good about your game after the round. What Lions lacks in length, it makes up for in harsh doglegs, minor tree trouble and postage stamp greens, making it an all around blast to play.

I, like many other native Austinite golfers, will be standing at the front gates if they ever try and bulldoze the land for commercial use.


Only thing I am not sure about your post is the cost if the renovate the course. I am pretty sure I have read that the green fees would go up substantially. Not over $100 I think, but still somewhere around 70-80. Would still be a bargain.

Looks like the wife wants to drag me along for a trip to Round Top in April, but is wanting to stay in Austin and haul back and forth for whatever event she is planning to attend. Which works out for me as it allows me to possibly make a lap or two around this tract before the May date.

UPDATE: The University Texas Board of Regents will vote on Thursday on whether or not to extend the deadline to continue negotiations to save the course. The negotiations are ongoing and the City has identified a number of possible funding sources and the City Council has unanimously voted to extend the deadline, but the Regents need to agree to provide more time for the talks to continue.

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Home of my first ever round, lots of memories tied up there. I’d love it if Coore/Crenshaw did the redesign and they up’d the green fees to keep that place in tip top shape to try and make it one of the premier munis in the country. Being that centrally located, public, and a Coore/Crenshaw design - I bet people would pack the house every day.

Looks like Lions will live to fight for another year.


Lets gooooo

I am very excited that the City Council agreed to extend negotiations by one year! This was a crucial step in the preservation process, but now the real work will begin.

For those in town for the Dell Match Play. Come out and support the cause Friday.


UPDATE: One step closer to preserving this historical golf course