Minnesota Golfer - Summer 2010 - 27

Seth
Raynor
PHOTO COURTESY OF THE USGA
Oak Ridge CC came about in 1921,
the result of an effort by Minneapolis
businessmen who sought " to bring the
cultural stimulation of golf and form a
country club among the Minneapolis Jewish
community. "
In 1923, Thorpe CC opened with nine
holes just south of Minneapolis. It was
stretched to 18 holes a year later, with the
help of renowned course designer Tom
Bendelow, and changed its name to Edina
CC after World War II. Simultaneously, one
of the fi rst planned residential communities
adjacent to a golf club in the country
evolved. The " Country Club District, " as it
became known, is a charming neighborhood
and popular oasis for raising active
families. It is also on the National Register
of Historic Places, reports Marci Matson
of the Edina Historical Society.
Edina CC has hosted a bevy of Minnesota
state championships and this summer
is undergoing a major restoration by Tom
Lehman's golf course design group.
In 1924, Stillwater CC's organizational
committee selected a site on " North Hill. "
The course opened in 1925
and today its resident-only
membership policy has been
widened to include the school
district, according to assistant pro
Nick Haag. The waiting list at Stillwater is
legendary. " Members who got in this season
have waited 13 years, " Haag says.
The brisk era of private club development
slowed with the fi nancially crippling
events of 1929 and the ensuing Depression.
Private club openings fi nally rekindled in
1944, with Lost Spur, a hilly nine hole developed
by the Zuhrah Shrine Temple that
is now a public course. Hillcrest GC of St.
Paul opened across the river in 1945, primarily
as a club for St. Paul's Jewish community.
Today it has a diverse membership
on the city's east side. Two years later, as
Jackie Robinson fi rst swung his bat in the
major leagues, the Hastings CC opened. In
1958, members relocated the course across
town. Today, Hastings members have a
beautiful clubhouse built in 2002 hovering
over a challenging 18 holes that has hosted
several state and regional championships.
N SETH RAYNOR:
ENGINEERED FOR GOLF
Seth Raynor wasn't instantly smitten by
the game when the 17-year-old's father was
hired in 1891 to survey the acreage that would
become Shinnecock Hills. He decided to study
civil engineering at Princeton. But in 1908, the
34-year-old Raynor was hired by C. B. Macdonald
to survey the land that became the
National Golf Links of America. Macdonald was
considered the " father of golf course design in
America, " and the pairing was serendipitous
for Raynor. The two partnered on many golf
designs, including the National Golf Links, the
Yale University Golf Course and Chicago GC.
" He scarcely knew a golf ball from a tennis
ball when we fi rst met, " Macdonald wrote in
his book, Scotland's Gift: How America
Discovered Golf. In 1914 the 60-year-old
Macdonald encouraged Raynor to strike out on
his own. Flying solo, Raynor designed Midland
Hills, Somerset and a re-do at Minnesota
Valley. He died in 1926 at the age of 51.
www.mngolf.org
Summer 2010 MINNESOTAGOLFER
25
PHOTO BY W.P. RYAN
http://www.mngolf.org

Minnesota Golfer - Summer 2010

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