One look at Marsh View Pitch & Putt and Cattail Recreation Area offers insight into the creation of a quality lifestyle amenity.

It’s beautiful; it’s recreation under majestic live oaks.

Residents teed off for the first time at the modified 18-hole walking golf course and took a dive into the resort-style neighborhood pool Friday during a grand opening ceremony at the facilities in the Village of Marsh Bend.

The Villages put the same careful attention to detail at these latest recreation amenities as all others in The Villages, said John Rohan, director of The Villages Recreation and Parks Department.

“The idea is not only about recreation, but the walkability of the area, the great views, the birding and walking,” Rohan said. “It’s going to provide a great new outlet for our Villagers in the southern area.”

Also: The two new amenities represent just the latest in a line of quality lifestyle choices south of State Road 44 since the Spanish Moss Recreation Area opened two years ago March 31 in the Village of Fenney. In fact, Marsh View Pitch & Putt and Cattail became the 13th and 14th recreational facilities to open in the southern area. Following Spanish Moss, Recreation and Parks opened the following in order: Fenney Recreation Center, Blue Heron Recreation Area, Fenney Springs Nature Trail, Fenney Putt & Play, Red Fox and Gray Fox executive golf courses, all in the Village of Fenney; Sugar Cane Recreation Area, Dudley Canine Park & Archery Range, Longleaf and Loblolly executive golf courses and Willow Tree Recreation Area, all in the Village of McClure.

Also: Iconic is the word expressed most frequently among the designers, engineers and builders when describing the four planned bridges that will connect The Villages north and south over State Road 44 and Florida’s Turnpike. Work started about two weeks ago on the first golf cart bridge over SR 44 under a hammock of majestic oaks. A smaller replica of the 232-foot, 20-foot-wide free-span truss already has been built — the Brownwood Pond Bridge just south of The Villages Golf Cars at the Brownwood town center. The setting of pilings for the golf cart bridge over SR 44 is well underway on the south side of the highway.This bridge, and the three to follow, are a testament to The Villages’ goal to enhance the community’s lifestyle, said Richard Busche, senior vice president at the engineering and consulting firm Kimley-Horn. “For the residents, I am excited about the connectivity that this bridge will provide for the overall development,” he said. “But I am also just as excited for the residents to see how beautiful the bridge will be. The entire design team has been working for months to ensure that the bridge will live up to the very high aesthetic standards that The Villages is known for.”

Also: That connectivity took on a larger perspective in light of new activity in the development of the southern area. The attorney who reviews land use, zoning and site plan applications for the Wildwood City Commission recently recommended approval of a new site plan for about 992 acres due south of Brownwood. It would permit up to 3,000 age-restricted homes on the site east of the turnpike and south of SR 44 and Lake Okahumpka, as well as new recreational and golfing amenities. The commission will vote on the measure at a later date.

Also: The SR 44 golf cart bridge eventually will give Villagers access to a separate 924-acre community the Wildwood City Commission recently approved. The community south of Warm Springs Avenue and east of the turnpike contains plans for an extensive internal transportation system that connects the area to the northern sections of The Villages, as well as providing access to a new championship golf course.

Also: Every day brings new growth at The Villages Grown garden-to-plate farm project at the southwest corner of Morse Boulevard and SR 44. The project’s executive director, Jennifer Waxman, expects the first planting to start sometime in April at this project that promises produce that exceeds all U.S. Department of Agriculture organic growth standards. The first harvest could come as early as May under the controlled greenhouse conditions. All structural and exterior work is nearly complete at the first greenhouse that will produce the microgreens. Inside the adjoining processing center, workers are completing wall framing and beginning drywall work. Electricity has been turned on, said Adam Wright, the farm’s operations director. “That’s really going to start the process to close things in over the next two to three weeks,” he said. “It will allow other processes to begin.”

David R. Corder is a senior writer with The Villages Daily Sun. He can be reached at 352-753-1119, ext. 5241, or