As promised, I wanted to give everyone a little more information on our mini-golf date, which I would say was our favorite activity with the picnic coming in second. I wanted to explain how we did it, what materials we used, where we got them from, and some things we learned along the way that might help you if you decide this is an activity you want to try, and I do highly recommend it. It’s a fun way to connect with your significant other, a great way to get creative, and it would also be a great activity for the whole family.
We ended up doing six holes in total in the common areas of our apartment, with one in our (very small) galley kitchen, one in our hallway, and four in our living/dining room area. We definitely could have done more if we decided to use our spare bedroom/office or our bedroom, but they’re both a little cluttered, and it just didn’t seem like a great idea.
I feel like materials may be a big question that some of you may have because when I first decided I wanted to do this, it was a big question for me, and the thought of how we would come up with a whole miniature mini-golf course without buying anything seemed a little overwhelming at first. After doing some searches on Pinterest and Google though, I saw a lot of creative uses of just everyday items, like bookends at a library, plastic toy animals, pool noodles as bumpers, and even dry food. I do have the benefit of working in a position where we (or at least used to) do a lot of event planning, and we have several large storage rooms full of things like PVC pipe and connector pieces, western décor, baskets, and all kinds of other random items that I can borrow and bring back. So for the golf course I did borrow a wagon wheel that I thought might make things a little interesting, a few baskets, and some PVC connector pieces. We also had some large boxes at work from something we recently had shipped, so I grabbed those too, thinking we could use for ramps. We ended up using the PVC connector pieces, the wagon wheel, a few of the plastic baskets, and a small amount of the cardboard, but the rest of what we used for the course was stuff we had at home, with most of it being dry food. We used canned goods and peanut butter jars topped with pasta boxes on several holes (pictures below), and we also used pasta boxes as bumpers on one hole. I saw where someone used wrapping paper on Pinterest as a bumper, so we did on one hole too with some we had lying around. We used some of the cardboard to create ramps with holes cut into the ramps, and on one hole, we just did a box with multiple holes, with each option offering a varying degree of points. We also do not play golf, so we didn’t have golf clubs or balls at our house, so I borrowed the golf balls from work and some plastic clubs of my nephews from my sister.
And while this was an insanely fun activity, both in designing the course and playing it, I did want to share a few tips that we learned on how to make it a little more fun, easy, and potentially even a little more fair. Firstly, out of the six holes that we had, the one that was set up in the kitchen and the one that was set up in the hallway were definitely the most ideal and more realistic ones, just because they were set up in a long, narrow, and clearly-defined space. That’s not to say that you couldn’t use a more open room like we did, but I would just recommend blocking it off more firmly than what we did. Also, because we used all of our living spaces rather than our bedrooms, all of our holes, with the exception of two (which were on a rug), were set up on the linoleum floor that’s in those rooms. We quickly learned that a smooth surface like linoleum, tile, hardwood, or laminate is not an ideal surface for playing mini-golf, so I would recommend setting your course up on carpet if you have it. If you don’t, a level and fairly smooth backyard may work, or a thin layer of blankets or towels on the floor would probably do the trick as well. And lastly, I would recommend that you just plan out the course a little bit on paper before getting to work. We did not do this, and while everything turned out pretty well, some of the holes ended up being pretty close together and a few of the ones we did last were a little thrown together because we didn’t think about how they would fit next to the other holes and how we would use our materials.
However you decide to set up your course, just remember to have fun!