Editor’s note: Gopher’s Simulators did not allow reporter Melanie Duronio to photograph other patrons during her reporting, as a result, her father is the subject of her photos. This did not constitute a fiduciary, political or familial conflict of interest with the content of the reporting and is solely for demonstrational purposes only.
WESTFORD — Nestled along Brookside Road, a new business offers a unique concept to the Town of Westford – indoor, year-round, virtual golf.
Founded by Michelle and Brian St. Germain, Gopher’s Simulators began as an idea at the couple’s kitchen table. Brian St. Germain already had experience installing indoor golf courses for private homes and country clubs, so the pair decided to try building a business of their own.
“I grabbed markers from my girls’ playroom that night and drew the logo seen on display today,” recalled Michelle St. Germain.
Having recently opened its doors in 2021, Gopher’s was built from the ground up by the St. Germain’s and their staff. Each employee is knowledgeable in either golf or computer graphics and able to assist customers with the technology.
A year-round golfing experience
Gopher’s primarily uses TrackMan simulators, a platform that is designed to track players’ swings, ball speed, launch angle, direction, distance, and more. It’s proprietary AI system, “Tracy”, can which offers feedback to players in real time.
“The software is very user friendly. After an initial visit, many golfers return and are able to login themselves and begin swinging within a matter of minutes,” said Michelle St. Germain.
Visitors can choose from hundreds of computer-generated courses. Many are based on real-life greens, such as Pebble Beach, allowing golfers to play on a variety of courses.
Additionally, the simulators allow golfers to continue playing even when outdoor courses close for the winter.
“Virtual golf has lots of advantages, with us living in New England […] it gives golfers the opportunity to improve their game all 12 months of the year,” said Michelle.
The business also offers an indoor putting green for practice outside of the simulations.
Opening on the heels of the pandemic, the St.Germain’s found their first year in business to be challenging. Overall, they noted, they were happy with the positive feedback from the Westford community.
“It really sends the message that with hard work and the right team, success is still attainable regardless of the many hurdles,” said Michelle St. Germain.
The St. Germain’s are proud of what they have accomplished with Gopher’s so far, and are looking forward to their second year in business.
“Owning and operating Gophers has been great […] I am excited to be able to come back and re-open a small business that was so well received by the local community,” said Michelle St. Germain.
Gopher’s Simulators will be open by appointment for the remainder of the summer. Players can request a time online.
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