Longview Greens Mini Golf offers risk and reward

Owner Jason Long, originally from Pennsylvania, has lived in Montgomery for 11 years with his wife.

Owner Jason Long, originally from Pennsylvania, has lived in Montgomery for 11 years with his wife.

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Longview Greens Mini Golf
Image description
Longview Greens Mini Golf
Image description
Longview Greens Mini Golf
Image description
Longview Greens Mini Golf
Image description
Longview Greens Mini Golf
Longview Greens Mini Golf, located at 735 Clepper Dr., celebrated one year in business this May—and recently added Hawaiian shaved ice to its treats menu this summer.

“Unlike a traditional round of golf, which can take three to four hours, mini golf is thirty minutes to an hour,” owner Jason Long said. “It’s enough to make folks feel comfortable and not be held hostage by the Texas summer heat; you can get outside for a little bit of time and stretch your muscles, get some fresh air, enjoy the scenery and get back home pretty quickly.”

During a year and a half of preliminary planning before breaking ground, Long persevered through 19 bank denials before securing funding and moving ahead with design and construction.

The Americans with Disabilities Act accessible course is Texas-themed with holes shaped like cowboy hats, boots, the state of Texas and a miniature road filled with armadillos and truck obstacles.

“With golf, I played it, and I’m not very good like a lot of people. You get very easily frustrated shanking it or hooking it, and one thing neat about mini golf is it doesn’t take a lot of skill level,” Long said. “We have folks come out here who are 90. We have folks that come out here, they’re just a year or two old, and each has fun in their own ways.”

Mindy Porter, a repeat customer, was playing a round at Longview Greens with her husband and three children, ages 9, 7 and 4.

“The kids really enjoy it,” Porter said. “We love having something local to do.”

Long said the city of Montgomery has been a supportive place for the first-time entrepreneur’s venture, offering a $15,000 grant to help connect utilities along with a parking lot variance allowing gravel instead of pavement.

“Both the city of Montgomery and the Economic Development Council have been really superb and really helped us as a small business, which is extremely difficult,” Long said. “My wife and I have never done this before, this is the first time. We’ve had some people in the city who have been very helpful to us, trying to get us off on the right foot.”

Long’s strategy to drive tourism to his business—and to Montgomery—focuses on online customer reviews. Longview Greens has a perfect 5.0 score out of 121 reviews on Facebook, and a 4.8 on Google with 56 reviews.

“A lot of tourism—doesn’t matter where it is— today, it’s predominantly based on your online reviews,” Long said. “If a place has a high review, no matter what it is, people will hear about it through word of mouth or social media.”

He has seen customers drive from an hour and a half away to come visit his course.

“At the end of April we had the Southwest Putting Tour come out, and they held a tournament here,” Long said. “They had a great time and we’re trying to put plans in place to have the state of Texas final at our course for next year—that’ll be really neat if we can pull that off.”




Longview Greens Mini Golf
735 Clepper Dr., Montgomery
www.longviewgreens.com
936-242-0604
Hours: Mon.-Thu. 10 a.m. - 9 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 10 a.m. - 10 p.m., Sun. 1 p.m.-9 p.m.
By Jules Rogers
Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Jules Rogers has been covering community journalism and urban trade news since 2014. She moved to Houston in June 2018 to become an editor with Community Impact Newspaper after four years of reporting for various newspapers affiliated with the Portland Tribune in Oregon, including two years at the Portland Business Tribune. Before that, Jules spent time reporting for the Grants Pass Daily Courier in Southern Oregon. Her favorite beats to cover are business, economic development and urban planning.