Tom Watson’s New Putting Complex Brings Unique Twist to Big Cedar Golf

Golf Legend Tom Watson and Noted Conservationist Johnny Morris Team to
Create New Chipping and Putting and Himalayan Style Practice Facility at Big Cedar Lodge


RIDGEDALE, Mo. (March 5, 2018) – Big Cedar Lodge, America’s Premier Wilderness Resort, continues bolstering an already unprecedented golf experience with the introduction of its impeccable putting practice complex designed by golf legend and native Missourian Tom Watson. Watson, World Golf Hall of Fame Legend, is on the distinguished list of the game’s icons who have lent expertise and imagination to Big Cedar visionary and Bass Pro Shops Founder Johnny Morris to establish one of America’s great golf destinations; including Jack Nicklaus, the late Arnold Palmer, Gary Player Tiger Woods, Tom Fazio, Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw.

Inspired by the historic Himalayas Putting Course at the Old Course in St. Andrews Scotland, Watson’s masterpiece now covers more than one acre of land high atop Missouri’s Ozark Mountains and near two exiting golf experiences at Big Cedar Lodge: the 13-hole Mountain Top Course designed by Gary Player and the 18-hole Ozarks National designed by the architect team of Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw set to open in spring 2018. The Tom Watson practice green complex features three separate greens; including a Himalayan style experience.

As one of the nation’s leading conservationists, Morris has put his energy and creativity behind preserving the habitat of the Ozarks and honoring the history and legends of the game. Partnering with Tom Watson to create a putting experience that is accessible to guests and players of all skill levels is part of the magic putting Big Cedar Lodge on the map as the next great golf destination in the United States.

“Working with Tom on the design of the putting course has been a truly enjoyable experience,” said Johnny Morris. “We have a shared passion for the Ozarks and a deep desire to showcase this part of the country to more people through the game of golf. We’re honored to have Tom once again lend his expertise and name to this project and contribute to the growth of golf at Big Cedar Lodge.”

Golfers and resort guests will use their imagination to create putting challenges of varying distances, directions and elevation changes as they crisscross Watson’s sprawling green complex. It will serve as both an amenity and attraction, bringing varying skill levels to the green to settle bets, warm up, wind down, practice or even introduce new players to the game for the very first time.

“What Johnny has done at Big Cedar Lodge – both for golf and for the people of the Ozarks – shows his true passion and commitment to this part of the country,” said Watson. “I’ve known Johnny for years and could not have asked for a better partner in the design of the putting course. His creativity and vision to grown the game of golf is unmatched in our industry today.”

Already a top-travel destination, Big Cedar Lodge has made a name for itself in the golf industry with the newly opened Mountain Top Course designed by Gary Player and Johnny Morris along with the development of Ozarks National – a new 18-hole layout designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw that will open in September 2018. All followed by an exciting 19 hole golf course designed by Tiger Woods and his design team TGR that will open in 2019. Big Cedar Lodge is also home to Top of the Rock, a Jack Nicklaus Signature design, and the newly renovated Buffalo Ridge Springs, which reopened in 2014 and was recently ranked as the “Best Golf Course You Can Play in Missouri” by GOLF Magazine.

For more information about course developments, visit


About Big Cedar Lodge
Located in the heart of Missouri’s Ozark Mountains, Big Cedar Lodge is America’s premier wilderness resort. A passion of Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris, the 4,600-acre lakeside retreat connects families to the outdoors with a variety of nature-based experiences including fishing, boating, hiking, spa and wellness offerings, hosting over 1.5 million guests annually. Signature attractions include Top of the Rock, home to world-class golf, dining, and entertainment; and Dogwood Canyon Nature Park, a 10,000-acre nonprofit wildlife preserve. Named “Number One Resort in the Midwest” by the readers of Travel + Leisure, the resort offers genuine Ozarks hospitality and a convenient location just south of Branson. Learn more at

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Rachel Wille KemperLesnik
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