By Erianne Lewis | Staff Writer
TopGolf opened its newest location in Waco on Friday despite the constant rain for most of the afternoon.
Brooke Hill, manager of sales and community engagement for Top Golf Waco, said the downpour did not stop crowds from coming out to the new location.
“We had a fantastic turnout in the morning for our red ribbon cutting. I was very happy with that. The mayor came out, several members of the chamber, as well as the city council. Our staff was out as well. We held the ribbon cutting at 9:30, and we opened our doors to the public at 10,” Hill said.
Hill said the decision to build a TopGolf in Waco was made partially due to Waco being a booming city.
“Waco is in the midst of a tremendous amount of growth,” Hill said. “Waco is becoming more of a destination city for both tourists as well as families looking to have a nice place to raise their kids and work, so, that was a big part of
Hill said Waco’s central location in between the Austin and Dallas establishments made it a great place for a new market. She said Waco customers are already familiar with TopGolf, which is good for the brand, and it is also within driving distance from the Dallas home office.
The Waco location differs from other well-known locations in Houston, Austin and Dallas, in that it is an open-air, one-story venue with 30 golf bays and a pavilion area. Hill said this model was chosen for Waco because of the size and community-centered feel of Waco.
“This is our new community-flexible model, we are very excited about it. We think it’s really very special,” Hill said. “We wanted to find what is the right model for a town like Waco. This isn’t Austin or Dallas. We don’t have the population they have in Austin or Dallas. When you look at [what] Waco is comprised of, it’s primarily families. So, we wanted to really drive home that community feel and that family engagement. This fits the culture of the town it’s in.”
Some of the other amenities included are a nine-hole miniature golf course, bean bag tosses and a selection of games, such as Angry Birds and Jewel Jam, that visitors can choose from as an alternative to just traditionally hitting the ball. The Toptracer technology is used to track the path of the ball and shows it right on the bay’s TV screen.
Hill said that they are proud of the fact that TopGolf was already socially distanced, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, since all the bays are 11- feet apart.
“We did take a pause, like many businesses did, and we evaluated a lot of our cleaning techniques, during the initial beginning of the pandemic. We rolled out our
commitment to play safely, and what we’ve done with that is that we’ve added temporary partitions between each golf bay, so that you are completely separated from the adjoining bay,” Hill said. “We have found that this model not only keeps our guests safe, but our associates safe as well.”
Hewitt freshman Seven Tang said he was able to attend TopGolf’s soft opening on Thursday. He said he had fun playing and is excited to see the venue become a popular spot for students and Waco locals alike.
“TopGolf in Waco invited Baylor’s men’s basketball and the coaching staff for their soft opening. I heard about it from an immediate family member, and that’s how I got in,” Tang said. “The staff is absolutely amazing, and the manager is super sweet. I highly recommend making reservations there.”