Our Most Recent History over our Centennial Season in 2019
The highlight of the Mankato Golf Club’s centennial season was a fantastic weekend of events and fellowship with members and guests of all ages in late June.
Kicking off the weekend was a Hickory Shaft event followed by the Supper on the Lawn. The day began with a presentation by our master of ceremonies Bill Reed who is a distinguished member of the Hickory Shaft Society. Mr. Reed gave a half hour presentation on the history of hickory shafts, the golf ball and golf courses dating back to the inception of the Mankato Golf Club in 1919. Following the presentation groups headed out to the golf course to try their hand at using hickory shafted clubs in a 9 hole scramble event with most members dressed in the classic garb of those who would have used hickories in the past. During the round helicopter rides above the golf course were a special edition to the day, what a view! Following the round all players and many more members and guests enjoyed a wonderful supper while enjoying the barbershop quartet that meandered their way among the tables of those telling stories of the day on the golf course and in anticipation of another special event planned for the very next day.
The second special event of the weekend was the Family Generations Carnival. This was a day in tribute to the family carnivals of years past at MGC with some added twists. The carnival was kicked off with a show by the Mankato Lancers, a fantastic marching band made up of young people of all ages that also has a very rich history in the Mankato area. Once the band finished the sounds of the carnival were filled with that of Jeremy Poland and Lantz Dale who performed from the 1st tee throughout the afternoon. The activities of the day were diverse with something for all ages. Around the putting green you could find many games for the kids, off of the deck was a beer garden with bingo, around the perimeter of the course you found course superintendent Fred Taylor giving hayrides with an old tractor, on the short game range there was a hole-in-one contest and on the practice range was a constant stream of people doing helicopter rides above the golf course and downtown Mankato.
Celebrate 100 Years of History
In our town there is a harmonious convergence of two rivers, the Minnesota and the Blue Earth. These rivers created a meandering valley. Above the valley are vast prairies and farmlands as far as the eye can see. In the spring, the lands are a shimmering blue earth of plowed fields in preparation for planting. In autumn, it is golden and ready for harvesting.
In the winter of 1919, a group of men had the audacious idea to buy 160 acres of this land and build a golf course, even though there were only two sets of golf clubs in Mankato. The land knows its history: It was once the sacred land of the Dakota Nation, and then, for one hundred years, the members of the Mankato Golf Club have been its respectful stewards.
This beautiful land of ours is more than a golf course, however. It is foremost a community; a growing, thriving community of people. It is the people: the members, the employees, and their collective memories, that bind us all together. It is for these two reasons, the land and the people, that we Celebrate 100 Years of History.
The Front Nine
Mankato Golf Club got its start just as World War I was ending. The Great War had taken a great toll on life. In the United States, 5 million boys and men had been drafted. By the end, almost 117,000 had lost their lives. President Woodrow Wilson worked to restore the morale of U.S. citizens. One way he did that was by touting his favorite pastime, golf.
In the 1890s, golf was virtually unheard of, but within the next quarter of a century, it became one of the most popular sports in the country. By 1918, it was estimated there were more than 2,500 President Woodrow courses in America. But there wasn’t one in Mankato.
What Mankato did have, though, was a group of men dedicated to the sport: attracted by the camaraderie of the game and united in a dream of building a golf course and creating a golf club in their community. One day over lunch at the Elks Lodge, the group pulled out a paper bag and began taking minutes, signifying the first official meeting on December 31, 1918. And so the Mankato Golf Club began.
As soon as the Mankato Golf Club opened the members began playing competitive golf. In 1920, as soon as there were pins in the cups, the club had its first Men’s Club Championship. The winner was H. J. Rabe, who went on to win four more times in the first decade. In 1921 Miss Cornelia Mansfield won the first Ladies Club Championship.
Through our 100 Year History there have always been tournaments and events for men, women, and children; mixed events for husband’s and wives, parents and children; and member-guest competitions for family and friends. Golf has been the cornerstone of our coming together.
Beyond the Men’s and Women’s Championship, which have been played every year over the last 100 Years, there have been the Bi-Play, Tri-Play, President’s Cup, Director’s Cup, King of the Hill and the MGC Cup for men. And the women have had their President’s Cup, Fuller Cup, Mother-Daughter Tournament, Buddy Matches and Bean Jar Team Competition.
Mankato Golf Club
The Complete History 1919-2019
This passion is evident in this beautiful book chronicling the Mankato Golf Club’s rich history. Envisioned and compiled by a dedicated committee who researched every nook and cranny of the golf world to get the tidbits of information they are proud to share with you. From 1919 to 2019, the Club has certainly become an icon in Mankato.
Order your copy today by downloading the order form below today.