By Alicia Dziak

With the long days and high temps that lie ahead, it’s time to enjoy time outdoors with friends old and new. Grab your clubs and head to one of the fantastic area golf courses, where you’re sure to have a ball out in the sunshine.

Holiday Valley offers a challenging 18-hole, par 70 course, right in the heart of Ellicottville. The “Double Black Diamond” golf course is beautifully maintained with amazing scenery from every hole.

Hoping to improve your swing this season? Holiday Valley offers golf lessons for all ages and abilities, led by Steve Carney, a Master PGA Golf Professional.

Holiday Valley also offers junior clinics in July and August for kids ages 7-18, and a no-pressure beginners ladies’ group that meets twice a month.

In addition, Holiday Valley’s practice facility, located on Route 219 across from the Inn at Holiday Valley, features a 300 yard driving range, which includes 10 covered tees and up to 50 grass tees, multiple target greens and a ball machine.

For more information, visit www.holidayvalley.com.

Randolph’s Cardinal Hills is an 18-hole, par 72 course, boasting scenic views and natural rural settings. For more information, visit www.cardinalhillsny.com.

Elkdale Country Club, located at 7871 Stone Chimney Rd. in Salamanca, is a semi-private golf club that is open for public play seven days a week.

Lessons are available for men, women, juniors and groups by appointment, led by PGA Professional Jack Widger.

For more information, visit www.elkdalecc.com.

Concord Crest in Springville aims to provide country-club conditions at public course prices. Concord Crest also offers clinics and camps for adults and kids. For more information, visit www.concordcrest.com.

Other area golf courses include:

St. Bonaventure Golf Course, a public golf course in Allegany. For more information, call (716) 372-7692.

Birch Run Country Club, a semi-private golf course in Allegany. For more information, call (716) 373-3113.

Ischua Valley Country Club, a semi-private golf course in Franklinville. For more information, call (716) 676-3630.

Golf is a social sport, and a great way to connect with others as well as with the great outdoors. Treat yourself to a golfing getaway, even if it’s just for an afternoon. You deserve it!