Celebrating 50 year milestonesWritten by Devon Evershed/ Golf Canada
Fifty years ago in Canada, we celebrated our centennial anniversary as a country and celebrated the opening of a number of golf courses from coast-to-coast.
The list of clubs include: Foxwood Country Club (Baden, ON), Oak Hills Golf Club (Stirling, ON), Oakland Greens Golf & Country Club (Norwood, ON), Orr Lake Golf Club (Elmvale, ON), Tamarac Golf & Country Club (Ennismore, ON), Warkworth Golf Club (Warkworth, ON), Centennial Pines Golf Club (Thunder Bay, ON), Red Lake Golf & Country Club (Balmertown, ON), Willow Ridge Golf and Country Club (Blenheim, ON), Caughnawaga Golf Club (Kahnawake, QC), Mission Creek Golf Club (Kelowna, BC), Mountain Woods Golf Club (Monction, NB), Nakusp Centennial Golf Club (Nakusp, BC), Squamish Valley Golf Club (Squamish, BC), Gilbert Plains Country Club (Gilbert Plains, MB), Pinawa Golf Club (Pinawa, MB) and Winkler Golf Club (Winkler, MB).
Oakland Greens is nestled northwest of Belleville and where four generations of the Wharram Family continue to operate this family run golf course. Bill Muir purchased the course in 1976, where with his background in steel fabrication, he was able to frame most of the clubhouse construction single-handedly. When the back nine holes were being built, daughter Marilyn Wharram said “every young boy in the area came to work picking stones out of the soil.” She also recounts the agency recruited to find workers, who said “it was the hardest position to fill that summer.”
Wharram’s husband attended the University of Guelph to become a Superintendent at the club. Her son-in-law Jeff is known for mechanical prowess around the course and for working late hours to assist wherever he is needed. Her other son-in-law, Dan, is now Oakland Green’s PGA of Canada professional.
Despite all of the family successes, the golf course suffered two tremendous losses: Marilyn’s father Bill and daughter Tammy in 2006 and 1989, respectively. In memoriam, the golf club runs an annual tournament in support of Camp Oochigeas, which provides kids with and affected by childhood cancer with unique opportunities for growth through challenging, fun, enriching and magical experiences. As Marilyn reminisces over the years passed, she states that “it is because of the family’s dedication to each other and the business that we are able to celebrate the 50th anniversary this year.”
If you have a story like this to share or a memory at one of our clubs, we’d love to hear it. We encourage you to submit your story on our Interactive Course History Map, located at ch.golfcanada.ca
Notable Golf Moments in 1967:
Jack Nicklaus won as a 27 year old against Arnold Palmer, with the help of an unlikely playing partner in a putter named “White Fang”. Arnold Palmer and his US team mates also created Ryder Cup history with a large 23 ½ to 8 ½ victory over Team Europe.