Miniature Golf

Anikin is no exception. It might be because he gets to swing a club or because he likes the challenge of the game; whatever the reason, he loves it.

Coconut Bowl | wildisland.com
Grand Adventure Land | grandsierraresort.com
Heavenly Village Mini Golf | theshopsatheavenly.com
Kings Beach Miniature Golf | kingsbeachminiaturegolf.com
Magic Carpet Golf courses | Magic Carpet Golf on Facebook

Anikin seems to have a natural ability for miniature golf, but often makes up his own rules. When he plays, he zips through the course at record pace. He casually hits the ball and sinks the shots. Sometimes it takes him two or three shots and sometimes he sinks a hole-in-one.

Hole after hole, he rushes the rest of the family through the course. He quickly completes each hole and then waits impatiently at the end. As he waits, he harasses everyone else, diverting our balls away from the hole or blocking the hole completely. The harassment is usually short lived and he lets us continue.

Anikin Allen and Aldo Aronhalt play at the Magic Carpet Golf in Carnelian Bay. | Nikki Aronhalt

Miniature golf courses are constructed with carpet, artificial turf, concrete and artificial obstacles and often have a fairy tale or fantasy theme, which speaks to the kid in all of us. Features usually include castles, pirate ships, dragons and dinosaurs and are built over and around each hole. Along the way, there are challenges such as tubes, tunnels, ramps, banks and moving obstacles such as bridges and windmills.

Most miniature golf facilities have several course selections, often with different levels of difficulty. Suitable for kids of any age, it is an opportunity to spend uninterrupted quality time with the family. It is also one of the easiest ways to provoke Anikin to put down his tablet and be active.

Many miniature golf courses also have video games, as does Magic Carpet Golf in Carnelian Bay. Located on the north side of Lake Tahoe, Magic Carpet Golf is in a beautiful forested setting across the street from the beach at Waterman’s Landing. This is one of Anikin’s favorite places. He loves the course, the video games and that it is not far from our house.

Anikin Allen playing at Kings Beach Miniature Golf. | Katherine E. Hill

I have one tip for those interested in visiting the arcade. Set a limit beforehand on what you plan to spend on games. You can easily spend a lot of money in a short amount of time.

Kings Beach Miniature Golf is located on the North Shore in the center of Kings Beach. Established in 1957, this family-owned course has long been a part of summer fun in Tahoe. It is close to the Kings Beach State Recreation Area, water sport rentals, shopping and many amazing restaurants.

There are two miniature golf courses on the South Shore. One of them is Magic Carpet Golf in South Lake Tahoe. It is the sister company to the courses of the same name in Reno, Nev., and Carnelian Bay. The other one is Heavenly Village Mini Golf.

There are several places in Reno and Sparks, Nev., that are open year-round. Some of our favorites are Magic Carpet Golf on South Virginia Street in Reno, the Grand Adventure Land mini-golf at the Grand Sierra Resort and the Coconut Bowl at the Wild Island Waterpark. The water park is open in the summer, but the Coconut Bowl stays open all year.