Stockton Golf and Country Club Celebrating 100th Birthday
Feb. 26, 2014
A year-long centennial celebration is going on at one of Northern California’s oldest golf courses.
Stockton Golf and Country Club, which was founded in 1914 by a group of local citizens, has turned a beautiful-as-ever 100 years old.
Originally a nine-hole layout with sand greens, it was in the late 1920s that architect Sam Whiting expanded the park-style course to 18 holes. Prior to arriving in the city of ports, Whiting had played a major role at The Olympic Club, where he teamed with William Watson in the creation of the Lake and Ocean courses. Whiting also designed Sonoma Golf Club, and teamed with Watson on what is now TPC Harding Park.
Like any club, Stockton Golf and Country Club has evolved with time.
In 1954, a new clubhouse was constructed to further the member experience.
Later in the mid-1990s, architect John Harbottle arrived and rebuilt all 18 greens to USGA specifications. Around the same time, new irrigation and drainage systems were also installed. The changes led to the course being designated as a qualifying site for the 1990 U.S. Open at Medinah.
As for those who’ve played the par-71 venue, the big names go back to Walter Hagen, who shot an 80 on the course during an exhibition in 1926. Fortunately for Hagen, he missed one of the days it snowed at the club (pictured left).
Others to tee it up at the club include Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Doug Sanders, Gary Player, Lee Trevino and Johnny Miller. The club is currently the home course of 2002 U.S. Amateur champion Ricky Barnes, who owns the course record (62).
In 2003, members of the private club approved building a new clubhouse which features, among other amenities, a state-of-the-art fitness center and member dining rooms with spectacular views overlooking the golf course and San Joaquin River.
As part of the celebration, the club will host a number of big events throughout the year including a summer concert, a 4th of July weekend event, Family Day and a festivities-ending Black and White Ball in December of 2014.