WALLINGFORD — A new virtual golfing facility, Back 9 Social, is coming to Wallingford in February with big plans for the large space, including a full kitchen and a bar.
“I enjoy [golf],” co-owner Shawn Reilly said. “A lot of people are picking it up now. The way things have changed in the industry there’s a lot of video and a lot of other ways that people can get better at it and pick it up quicker than in the past.”
Indoor golf simulator businesses are becoming popular for people to continue or begin practicing their golf skills even when the weather is cold.
Back 9 Social will be located at 805 N. Colony Rd. in the former SkyZone trampoline park location. SkyZone closed permanently in 2020. The opening date for the new business is expected to be at the end of February.
“We want to do more than golf,” Reilly said. “Everyone offers kind of the same thing. You know the golf simulators you can use them for fun, play with your friends or get lessons.”
Reilly said the difference with Back 9 Social compared to other golf simulator businesses is their 10 bays are 5 ft wider than average and they are much deeper, which will allow for bigger groups if wanted. There will also be other games that are virtual.
Reilly is going into business with his brother-in-law, Raffaele Difonzo, a Wallingford-based contractor.
“It’s a good location, right on Route 5,” Reilly said. “Wallingford is a great town. The town has been really good to work with as far as getting everything together.”
“I think it’s great,” Town Planner Kevin Pagini said of the new business. “We worked with them to get the facility that they wanted in there. We’re happy to see businesses be able to come here and be able to work with them through the process.”
Reilly said Back 9 Social will be open year round. Outside of virtual gaming, customers can watch sports games on large screens and eat “good” food.
The ceilings are 20 ft high which Reilly said allows for the space to include a full bar which will be in the center of space and a full kitchen.
“We want people to come in not just to play golf,” Reilly said.