100 YEAR HISTORY

Experience the rich history of the Kamloops Golf & Country Club, tracing its journey from 1914 to its current status as a premier golfing destination. Witness its evolution from humble beginnings securing land to the establishment of The Kamloops Golf & Country Club in 1950. Explore pivotal moments like the appointment of Rod Palmer as the first Golf Pro and the completion of the 18-hole course in 1967. Discover its commitment to inclusivity, engaging social events, and facility enhancements. Learn about its extensive 2007 renovation project, shaping it into a par 72 Championship course with modern amenities, welcoming golf enthusiasts of all levels.

[ Photo above KMA 6775 Golfing on the Kamloops Golf Links ]

1914-1929

Early Years and Development

In March 1914, amidst a burgeoning interest in sports in Kamloops, a group of fifty residents convened with the aim of establishing a golf course for the local community. Securing the use of a parcel of land owned by Alfred W. Johnson, the Kamloops Golf Club (KGC) commenced its journey. On May 1, 1914, amidst anticipation and enthusiasm, the club celebrated its official opening ceremony, marking the inception of organized golfing activities in the area. Over the years, as Kamloops flourished, so did its sports culture, with a diverse range of competitive teams and recreational activities gaining traction. By 1929, bolstered by growing membership and financial stability, the KGC was able to secure ownership of the land it occupied, setting a firm foundation for its future endeavours.

[ The Clubhouse at the Kamloops Golf Club, what is now know as the Hillside Cemetery ]

1945-1953

Relocation and Expansion

Following the conclusion of World War II, the returning troops brought with them an increased interest in recreational activities, including golf. Recognizing the need for expansion, negotiations commenced between the Kamloops Golf Club and the city, leading to the acquisition of the hillside golf course by the City of Kamloops. Additionally, a 10-year lease of 240 acres of former airport land, complete with two buildings for a clubhouse and golf lessons, was secured for $500. Amidst these discussions, plans were set in motion for the club’s relocation and expansion, ultimately resulting in the establishment of The Kamloops Golf & Country Club in 1950. The following years witnessed the careful planning and execution of the new 18-hole golf course, showcasing the club’s unwavering dedication to meeting the evolving needs of its members and the community.

In 1946, dues totalling $309.50 were collected, along with a bank balance of $634.00, while the property was assessed at $1800. The clubhouse faced a flood in 1948, submerged under 12” of water. Plans were initiated in 1950 to relocate to a new site just north of the airport golf area, with the purchase of 171 acres for $1556. Plans were drafted to incorporate a new 9-hole course, supported by $50,000 in authorized debentures. Membership was proposed to be capped at 300, with 52 acres reserved for future use. In 1951, some acreage was sold to Roylite Refinery (now Suncor) for $30,000, funding construction efforts and driving further club growth through additional share sales.

[ Leased Army Barrack for $25 in 1946 ]

1952-1967

Growth and Completion

The appointment of Rod Palmer as the club’s first Golf Pro in 1952 marked a significant milestone in the club’s history, ushering in a period of growth and development. By December 1952, the Kamloops Golf & Country Club transitioned into a corporate entity, signaling its continued evolution. In July 1953, the club proudly unveiled its North Kamloops location, further solidifying its presence in the region. The completion of the back nine in 1967 marked the fulfillment of the club’s vision for a full-fledged 18-hole course, a culmination of years of dedication and hard work.

[ Man holding a pin flag in 1950 ]

1968-2006

Growth and WOMEN IN GOLF

The Kamloops Golf & Country Club underwent notable expansion and evolution, with a particular emphasis on welcoming women golfers into the fold. Maralyn Palmer, daughter of esteemed golf professional Rod Palmer, played a pivotal role in this transformation, fostering a more inclusive environment for female players. The club experienced a surge in membership during this period, buoyed by its reputation for hosting engaging social events such as themed nights and festive gatherings, which contributed to its growing popularity.

Furthermore, the club took significant steps to enhance its facilities, including the establishment of an additional nine holes, thus completing the transformation into an 18-hole course. This development not only elevated the golfing experience but also attracted a broader demographic of players, including women and junior golfers. Notably, the club adopted a more inclusive policy regarding women’s tee times, allowing them to play at any hour, whereas prior to 1970, they were restricted to afternoon play.

The increased visibility of women golfers in the media underscored their growing presence and achievements within the club, reflecting a broader trend of female empowerment in the sport. Moreover, junior golfers thrived, consistently securing victories in various tournaments, highlighting the club’s commitment to nurturing emerging talent and fostering a competitive spirit.

[ Above – Rod Palmer at the 5th Green Facing East ]

[ Mixed foursome; Mrs. Marshall, Claire Dalgleish, Mrs. Golnick and Allan Milton]

[ Marilyn Palmer ]

2007-2010

RENOVATION AND REMODELLING

In 2007, recognizing the need to enhance the playing experience and facilities, the Kamloops Golf & Country Club embarked on a comprehensive renovation project under the guidance of golf course architect Ted Locke. The ensuing transformation, completed in stages from 2009 to 2010, saw the implementation of cutting-edge features and redesigned elements aimed at elevating the course’s challenge and appeal. From redesigned bunkers and water hazards to meticulously crafted bent grass greens, the renovations reflected the club’s unwavering commitment to excellence and innovation.

[ The Clubhouse from hole 4 in 1968, the old Army Mess Hall in the background ]

2011 Forward

CONTINUED EXCELLENCE

Today, the Kamloops Golf & Country Club stands as a beacon of sporting excellence and community engagement. Boasting a par 72 Championship course stretching over 6,700 yards, the club offers a range of facilities, including a grass tee driving range, Pro Shop, and The Willows Restaurant. As a semi-private, member-owned institution, it remains dedicated to providing a welcoming environment for golf enthusiasts of all levels, ensuring that the legacy of camaraderie and competition continues to thrive for generations to come.

[ 1986 old clubhouse was demolished ]

[ 1987 The New Clubhouse was built, and still standing today ]