The new Tatanka Golf Club near the town of Niobrara, Nebraska will open for play on 14 September.
The new course – which has been designed by architect Paul Albanese – forms part of the Ohiya Casino Resort, located on the Santee Sioux Native American Reservation in the northeastern part of Nebraska.
Of the new course, Albanese said: “Nothing is forced. Nature has been respected in the design process, which is something very important to the Sioux and appreciated. We took the history and the culture of the area and the Santee Sioux Nation and used it as a design inspiration in a subtle and respectful way. We looked at the land forms and designed something that might reflect local stories.”
Albanese changes his mind daily as to which hole he likes best.
“Today, maybe it’s the par three fifth hole – standing on the green, it offers the most gorgeous views of the rolling hills, up to 40 miles,” he said. “It’s unobstructed, no housing, just the land as it was 100 years ago – untouched.”
The course’s fifteenth hole is a short par four that golfers may choose to try and reach the green with a driver from the tee.
“There is a series of bunkers on the side of the hill that are rugged and rough protecting the green,” he said. “Golfers will choose the risk reward, play down through the valley or go for the green and challenge the bunkers. It will be exciting from a golf standpoint.”
The Ohiya Casino Resort was the first of its kind to open in Nebraska 17 years ago, and general manager Brian Bursheim is delighted with the new addition.
“The golf course will put the resort on the map and make its own name,” said Burshiem. “It is a great add-on for the Santee Sioux Nation. They have a great casino, a great hotel and this is a great golf course.”