PrairieFire Golf & Grill much more than just a cool driving range


BYRON – Soon, area golfers will be able to enjoy their favorite game year around.

That’s right – even in the winter.

PrairieFire Golf & Grill, located at the PrairieView Golf Club in Byron, is now set to open on April 2. It features not only a full-service bar, shareable food items and great seating, but is also a Toptracer golf range.

Toptracer technology, which is owned by Top Golf, allows golfers to combine technology with real clubs and balls to play a variety of games. The driving range features eight bays where groups up to eight players can compete in games including longest drive competitions, hitting lighted targets or even playing classic courses like Pebble Beach.

Players can watch the flight of their ball in front of them, or on the screens mounted at each bay.

“Basically, it allows people, when they are using the bays in the driving range, the Toptracer will track the ball to see how fast it’s going, how high it’s going, how far it’s going, that type of thing,” said Scott deOliveria, Assistant General Manager at PrairieView.

He said it is the same technology that tracks the ball on televised golf events. But deOliveria said this is an actual driving range too.

“You are actually hitting out onto a range, so you can actually see the flight of the ball all the way to the ground,” he said.

There is also a separate bay that will be used by head PGA pro Andrew Schlupp to give lessons.

But PrairieFire isn’t just for golfers. There will be plenty of comfortable seating, food and a bar with 10 draft beer lines that will feature some craft and seasonal brews.

“There’s an entertainment factor involved, to come out and enjoy some food and drinks,” deOliveria said. “(It is) a very cozy, relaxed atmosphere with the lounge furniture and the lighting and the heated bays. It’s kind of set up to be a real social experience.”

PrairieFire will be open from 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, and from 9 a.m.-midnight on Friday and Saturday. Reservations are highly recommended for those who want to golf, deOliveria said. Prices range from $25 to $40 per hour, depending on the day and time. He said that for a foursome to play a specific course on the Toptracer range, it will take about three hours.

With winter being down months for a golf course in this region, deOliveria said this type of year-around golf experience will help the bottom line.

“We can continually generate revenue throughout the year to support the golf operation,” he said.

He said many courses in the area are keeping an eye on PrairieFire.

“I get the feeling that this will be a trend that golf courses will definitely be taking a look at.”

And the golfing community is already primed for it to open, as deOliveria said the feedback has been great and excitement for the opening is high.