BUDA, Texas (KXAN) — A memorial in Buda is honoring veterans present and past — with a twist.
A one-of-a-kind Memorial Miniature Golf and WWII Museum will be officially open next weekend. It’s located at 1710 N Farm to Market 1626, Buda, Texas, 78610.
The owners said it’s the only WWII-themed mini golf course with a museum in the state.
“Each hole will meet Texas education guidelines for social studies and geography,” Brian McKinney, its founder said. “[It’s] a fun place for families to honor veterans past and present.”
McKinney said he had a literal dream about opening Memorial Miniature Golf and WWII Museum two years ago, where the idea for the concept came to him.
There are 18 holes on the course that have events of WWII chronological order. McKinney said community members will have the opportunity to dedicate a hole to a veteran. From there, McKinney will do research, and will have a plaque made, which will be displayed on stands throughout the course.
On the 1.5 acres where the attraction sits, you’ll find artificial and preserved pieces of history, specific to WWII. The course connects to a museum that will house more historic WWII pieces.
“Things will be added as we go,” McKinney said. “This whole property is going to be ever-evolving.”
The property is compliant with Americans with Disability Act (ADA) standards. And it’ll also serve food and drinks.
McKinney said his grandfather was a WWII veteran, making this business even more special for he and his family. And there’s another local connection to the war, adding an extra layer to this project.
97-year-old WWII retired Lt. Colonel Fighter Pilot, Huie Lamb, was a part of the same unit as McKinney’s late grandfather.
Lamb never imagined he’d be honored for serving, in such a creative way.
“This is the 8th-air force hole, it’s amazing!,” Lamb said, while standing on a portion of the course, that specifically honors his unit.
Lamb remembers the war like it was yesterday.
“His son reached out to us, and said–‘Hey my dad lives off of Shoal Creek,’ and ever since, Huie has been a big part of our lives.”
Each hole will also honor prominent groups of WWII like the Tuskegee Airmen, and the “Rosies” Women of War.
‘They undoubtedly played such a big part, in even just keeping up with their homes, or taking the jobs of men in factories who had to go off to serve,” Rachel McKinney, Brian’s wife said.
McKinney said their rose garden is a par of a national living memorial that specifically honors women of war–just one more piece of history out on the course.
McKinney’s dream has turned into a reality, with his grandfather close to his heart.
“We miss him,” McKinney said.
Lamb encourages everyone to come experience the course and musem for themselves, eager for the official opening day.
“It’s going to be perfect,” Lamb said. “You really remember all of the people that you served with. It’s great that all veterans are honored here.”
Honoring lamb as a local war hero, McKinney said they’re also building a wooden P-51 plane with the same markings as the one Lamb flew.