Friday, August 11, 2017

1920s Spring Valley Ads

Back in early July, I did a post about Rainbow Golf Gardens, Lorain’s “pitch and putt” golf course located near Lakeview park in the early 1930s.
That triggered an email from longtime blog contributor and researcher Rick Kurish.
Rick wrote, "Your blog the other day about the miniature golf course on West Erie Avenue adjacent to Lake View Park was interesting. I never knew that the popularity of miniature golf courses dates to the 1920s; I thought it all started with the Putt - Putt chain in the 1950s and 1960s. 
"Oh well, we Baby Boomers always thought that everything started with us! 
"Just for kicks, I did a little research and found that at the same time the Rainbow Golf Gardens were operating in Lorain, that there were also two miniature golf courses in Elyria and one in Amherst."
Rick’s email ended up being pretty timely.
"I also ran across several interesting ads for Spring Valley, which was being developed at about the same time,” Rick noted. "Since the once iconic course was sold a few years ago and is now being redesigned as the Valley of the Eagles Golf Resort, with a Nicklaus design. 
(You can read the Chronicle’s coverage of the opening of the new Valley of the Eagles Golf Resort here.)
But let’s get back to Spring Valley.
"I remember when it was THE course to play in the area,” reminisced Rick. "According to articles in the Chronicle - Telegram, the land for the course was purchased in 1925 and the first 9 holes opened in 1926 as a public course. 
"Within a year or two the course was expanded to 18 holes and became a private club. 
"The attached ads from June 1927 and April 1928 really push the "exclusivity" of the club and the associated home lots that were for sale. It would seem that golf was one of many "crazes" of the Roaring 20s.”
I never golfed at Spring Valley, but I did play there – during my "big band” days (which I’ll write about sooner or later) at a formal country club dance. I remember being impressed by the first class service provided by the attentive staff.


Anonymous said...

Rick/ either of you remember a par-3 golf course on Lake Rd. next to the old Roman Villa restaurant? It was east of the Lorain Drive-In. You paid in what in what I think was an old gas station and they gave you a club and two golf balls for your round. The short holes if I remember correctly, went behind the station and Roman Villa's parking lot and maybe a motel. My uncle took me there when he was teaching me how to play. That would have been in the late 60's. -Todd

Mike Kozlowski said...

...There was also a very nice little course on Oberlin Avenue when we moved to West 37th St in 1965 - not sure how long it lasted after that, but I do remember going there at least once or twice. It was partially demolished when Old English Parlor and Pizza Hut went up, but I know some overgrown sections of the walkways were still there as late as 1978.


Rick said...

Hi Todd. Although I do not personally remember the par 3 golf course you mentioned since I was not in the area during the 1965 to 1969 time frame, I did run across an ad for the course a couple of years ago. In the C-T 0f August 20, 1965 was an ad for the new Grand View, Par 3, Golf Course. It was advertised as the only course in Lorain County that was lighted for night play and was located at 4881 West Erie Ave., between the Grand View Motel and Roman Villa Restaurant.

I wondered how a golf course could have existed in such a small space and your description of the layout of the course explains it. I'm guessing that the course was a short lived attraction, since I drove by there every day in 1970 without noticing it.

Anonymous said...

Mike......" I did a little research and found the miniature golf center in an old city directory. Beginning in 1966, Putt-R-Golf was located at 4354 Oberlin Avenue. In 1968 the address changed to 4290 Oberlin Avenue. By 1969 it was gone, replaced by a Taco Kid restaurant........[ From Dan Brady's blog..... March 31 2010 Bill N

Anonymous said...

Thanks Rick for the update and detective work...that explains it. By the way Roman Villa had great minestrone soup back then! - Todd