article image

Wellness 101: Dye Course at French Lick An Old Soul

Editor’s Note: This post is one in a series featuring the journey of wellness guru and golf enthusiast, A.J. Ali, who is traveling through every state in America while playing golf as part of a 101-day journey from June 16 to September 24 to promote the wellness lifestyle. After losing his father and brother to health-related illnesses and after a close call with a blood clot and pulmonary embolism two years ago, A.J. has dedicated his life to living well and sharing his experiences to encourage others to focus on wellness.

Sometimes you know on the drive in that a golf course is going to be special.

This was far more than that. It was otherworldly.

By the time I arrived at the bag drop, I had goosebumps, like I was starring in one of those golf films with excellent cinematography, lighting and lines like Rowdy Herrington’s “Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius.” I felt like I was transported back in time to a mansion on top of a hill on hundreds of acres of some of the most breathtaking scenery on the planet and 360 degree views that stretch for miles.

Being at The Pete Dye Course at French Lick in and of itself was exhilarating, but I also got to play golf here – on one of the best-designed golf courses known to mankind. A golf course that was sculpted out of that hillside in such a way that you think only dreams, or God, could have created such a place.

I stood there wondering like Ray Kinsella in Field of Dreams “Is this Heaven?” and then thought, “No, this is Indiana.” French Lick, to be precise. Home of Larry Bird and favorite of dreams and of dreamers. This fantasy has become real for a select few so far. A recent addition to golf’s elite courses, The Pete Dye Course has received numerous awards including Golf Magazine’s designation of “America’s Best New Course You Can Play” in 2009.

Dye Course

The Pete Dye Course at French Lick is otherworldly and a true joy to play. Photo by A.J. Ali.

This year, the course hosted the LPGA Legends for the second time and is already on schedule to host it’s first major – the 2015 Senior PGA Championship Presented by KitchenAid. Not bad for a youngster that plays more like an old soul, with fairways that echo back to the very roots of the game and character that comes from another era.

Although the atmosphere (beautiful mansion, manicured everything, world class practice area, amazing vistas from the rear patio) is very formal, you’re among friends at the Pete Dye Course. Rigel Hahn, PGA Assistant Golf Professional, greeted me with my name printed on a cart and a special gift that is given to all guests.

The feeling shared by everyone there is that this is a place to be enjoyed and cherished. The good life in the hills of the Midwest, and I hope you can enjoy it as much as I did.

Follow my 50-State journey at and support my efforts to bring you more of the good life at


Featured image courtesy of Indiana

Leave a Reply