History of the Prineville Golf Club
In the spring of 1946, a recurrent dream of certain citizens of Prineville came to life again, this time with sufficient determination that the first steps were taken to actually organize the Prineville Golf and Country Club. Among those who were determined to take positive action to organize a golf club were: Bob Hogan, Ralph Brown, Bill Morse, Jimmie Dreher, Paul Kelly, Pat Soran, Dick LeMert, Rudy Mollner, Dick McRae, C.C. McGlen, Brick Hagedorn, Mort Barney, Dan Taylor and others.
After a few preliminary conferences, a meeting was called and all interested people were asked to come to the Lions Club Room above the Marketeria to discuss plans for the organization. This meeting was held with between 40 and 50 people present and resulted in the election of temporary officers and the decision to file articles of incorporation. Also, at this meeting the first money was paid and turned over to Doug Kemper, the first secretary-treasurer.
During 1946 and 1947 the club confined itself to the raising of funds and none were spent. In 1948, chiefly through the optimism and work of Paul Kelly, plans were made to acquire the site east of Prineville from Bob Hogan for the use of the course. It may be said that Mr. Hogan cheerfully agreed to allow the golf club to use his valuable land without reasonable expectation of payment in the immediate future. Through Mr. Hogan’s efforts the services of Mr. George Junior of Waverly Golf Club in Portland, Ted Long worth, the Pro at Waverly, and Eddie Hogan, the Pro at Riverside Golf Club of Portland were secured and these gentlemen came to Prineville and laid out the course in 1948.
From there on it was hard work by the members of the club who were interested enough to devote their time. The fairways were seeded and the greens built up and prepared. At this time it also became apparent that some club house facilities would be necessary, and the present site of the club house was settled upon and again, the volunteer workers of the club came to the rescue and the present structure was erected. It should be pointed out that Mr. Paul Kelly was the individual who devoted a great deal of his time and money to the erection of the club house.Without his assistance and cooperation it undoubtedly would not have been possible to have our present building.
The first play on the course took place in the summer of 1949 and in the fall of the same year, the services of Mr. William Graham and his wife were obtained to act as Club Professional and Caterer. It was not until the spring of 1950 that the people of Prineville actually realized that they had a golf course, although only six holes were completed. By this time the membership had grown to approximately 80 and during late summer of 1950, the membership figure began to creep up towards the 100 mark. The first tournaments were organized and Robert Hogan became the first Men’s Club Champion and Beaulah Sell became the first Ladies’ Champion.
1951 saw great improvements in the greens and the fairways and considerable play. In fact, it became apparent to the board of directors that the other three holes would have to be added, and the steps were taken to acquire adjoining land from Mr. George Gerardo. By this time, Mr. Hogan held a mortgage on the existing facilities, but had never been paid any money. John, Fred, and Claude Hudspeth came to the rescue and advanced $13,000 to pay Bob Hogan for his land and acquire the additional property necessary to complete the nine holes. The Hudspeth’s received a first mortgage to secure their advance of money.
By the fall of 1951, the remaining three holes had been roughed out, greens built up and the fairways planted. Much of this was done by Ed Wynn working with donated Hudspeth equipment. Mr. Graham resigned and the services of Alex Weber of Kelso, Washington as Club Professional were obtained. Much of the material in the present club house was donated to the club by the mills and Mr. Kelly.