Sand Valley: The next top golf destination in the U.S.

The CCI team is nearly complete with construction of the new Sand Valley Golf Resort clubhouse complete with guest rooms, bar and restaurant, and pro shop. While the 12-room lodge was completed within 4-months, construction continues around the 1,700-acre development to complete site work, parking lots, and access roads. CCI is proud to be part of this incredible project and we are thrilled for Sand Valley to become one of the top golfing destinations in the country.

Sand, golf and hopes for an economic boom in Central Wisconsin


TOWN OF ROME — The Laurentide Ice Sheet did quite a number on Wisconsin. As it advanced from the north, it created Glacial Lake Wisconsin, at 550,000 acres about four times the size of modern-day Lake Winnebago. As the Green Bay lobe of the glacier melted, a massive crack formed that rapidly drained the lake to the south, creating the dramatic rock formations of the Wisconsin Dells and the towering bluffs along the Lower Wisconsin River.

The old lake bed remains, along with piles of sand and a spectacular opportunity — hiding in plain sight for the past 14,000 years — that could pump hundreds of millions of dollars into the local economy.

Mike Keiser, one of the country’s most accomplished golf course developers, wants to build up to five golf courses on 1,700 acres of land between Wisconsin Rapids and Adams-Friendship. In addition, he plans to restore an adjacent 7,200 acres for public use and bring it back to its natural state with jack pine, hill oak and prickly pear cactus that would improve the habitat for the endangered Karner blue butterfly and Kirtland’s warbler.

But the ambitious Sand Valley Golf Resort project also has community leaders here scrambling to improve infrastructure and amenities for the well-heeled who think nothing of spending $10,000 in a day to charter a cross-country jet and play a few rounds of golf. For years, the region has used its sandy soil to grow potatoes, cranberries and pine trees for pulp for the paper industry. The golf development is adding to that economy.

“The people of central Wisconsin do not have a sniff about how uniquely aware the rest of the country is about Sand Valley,” said Rick Bakovka, president of the Regional Economic Growth Initiative of Central Wisconsin. “It’s the biggest economic opportunity for our area in the last 50 years.”

And it’s all because of the sand.