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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Looking Back – The Way, The Way To 1965 | tea to green

There was no local golf news last week, so I thought I’d reminisce about some golf news from the past.

Some of you may remember that when Ted Blofsky was Chico Enterprise Records Sports Editor and he was called Chips ‘n’ Puts when he wrote a local golf column. Blofsky left Enterprise-Record in the mid-1980s and took over as editor and publisher of NCGA Golf, a quarterly publication of the Northern California Golf Association, which through his efforts and expertise in sports writing is a staple for NCGA members. Became Golf Magazine. Northern California. I have copied several of his columns, written in 1965, related to the newly developed Butte Creek Country Club. Hopefully, I am not the only one who is familiar with the many names in his articles.

Circa, February 1965: “Members of Butte Creek Country Club will hold their second annual general meeting at Elks Lodge at 8 p.m. This will be an extremely important meeting as the club will soon be open for use by members and their guests, and we are setting our schedule and schedule with this in mind”, said club president Clay McGowan.

“The club plans to open the course for play sometime in the spring or early summer. Keith Aynon was recently announced as a club professional and is set to report on 15 April. Clubhouse Construction, consisting of a pro shop, snack bar, lounge and locker room, began shortly after the first of the year after a delay in the rainy season. However, the building will be ready by mid-April. McGowan reports that The club now has 130 members. That means 70 memberships are available for $1,400.”

March 1965: “Officials at Butte Creek Country Club planned to open the golf course on April 20, but that target date could not be realized. Certain details about the clubhouse should be noted first. Professional Keith Eoin will return to work sometime during the week of April 15. Eoin will give lessons and run the driving range until the course opens. An Easter Egg Hunt is planned for members and guests on April 18. The hunt will begin at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. Will last

April 1965: “The first nine holes at Butte Creek Country Club will be open for play on Saturday, according to an announcement made yesterday by the board’s representative, Bud Hanna. However, the grand opening of the new links will not take place until the early part of June. The par for the front nine is 36. This writer had a chance to play the entire course when it was rated, and we think the front nine is just as good as the back. Accuracy will be required on most holes There are many good holes and even if the yardage is small compared to the previous nine scoring, there will be no easy task.”

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“BCCC members and guests will host a steak barbecue on Sunday. The barbecue is being operated by Jean Valla. Cocktail hours will begin at 1 a.m. and barbecue at 3 p.m.

April 24, 1965: “The last nine of Butte Creek Country Club were opened for play yesterday. And, if that’s any indication of the entire course, Chico is one of the finest and toughest in California when full play begins in June.” Might be one of the golf courses.

“We had a chance to play nine holes. Of course, the course isn’t in excellent condition yet. The fairway grass is long and soft, but it must be swung around quickly with the help of sunshine. No real easy holes on the last nine.” (We didn’t get one anyway.) Three pars is pretty tough. Almost every hole has a water hazard and there are nets to deal with every green if you meet them.

“A golfer will get the chance to use almost every cub in his bag. Each hole presents a different challenge. No two holes are the same on the last nine. The greens are big. Some of them are bumpy, But that can be expected so soon. The course is very interesting to play. We are sure that if anyone gets a chance to visit this course they will find it enjoyable.

“Professional Keith Eoin staged a nine-hole tournament for 37 members and 23 guests played yesterday. Guest Tex Rutledge found the course to his liking with a par 36. Second place in the gross department went to another guest, Ken Fitzgerald. Gaya, who had 40. Member Rufus Rooker was third with a 42. The net winner was Pat Gainer who had a 36. Gainer is a member. Member Al Flock and guest Fred Landis finished second with a net of 36, those For players who did not have handicaps the Galloway system was used. Gil Leonard, a member, finished with a net of 35. The member, Jack Wendell, had a 36 and the guest, Plez Guinn, a 37.

Thanks Ted.

Note: If we don’t get some sunshine I may have to try something new next week as well, although I will be writing a golf column from London, like in the UK Happy Holidays.

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