Jim Brown, who
owned Brown’s Horse Exchange and a herd of beef cattle, owned the
land for the golf course. Jim Brown was a member of a pioneer family
and owned this property for more than 40 years. The land, Concession
4, South part Lot 8, Reference plan TER418 Part 1, PCL16635SST, was
bought from his son Glen Brown in 1967, for the sole purpose of
building a golf course.
There were many people involved in this purchase: Don Shepherdson,
Jim Sargent, Ken Ebert, Cliff Leroy, Ron Dobson, Ott Gibson, Don Perrin, Max Steele, Wilf
Ryan, Denis Gabriel, Ron Hilson, Ken Montgomery SR, Gaetan Rivard and many more. A total of 42 shareholders came to join
approximately 6 months later.
The Wabi Valley was the official holding company. The original
suggestion for the name of the golf course was Glendale Golf Course, but there was already
a golf course registered under that name near Hamilton. They decided to name it the New
Liskeard Golf and Country Club.
They had work parties every weekend, some week nights and holidays,
to help the commencement of the golf course. Due to the fact that a cow
pasture was being converted into a golf course meant that endless work was required.
Up to 50 workers at a time had to plow, transport dirt for the tees and greens and seed
the land for the nine hole golf course. They gave up golf for the summer of 1967 to work
on this project.
Since the whole farm was not required for the first nine, they rented
the unoccupied portion of the farm to Herb McLean. Mr. McLean farmed this land where he
cultivated hay, oats, and kept it very well fertilized.
Jim Sargent designed the layout for the front nine and took care of
organizing work parties and assigning jobs. Ken Ebert was responsible for the watering
Ev Sargent had her own method of fundraising. On weekends, she sold
beer on the golf course and raised enough money to buy the first flags, tee markers and
cups for holes.
The New Liskeard Golf Club officially opened in 1968 with memberships
of $50.00 to $70.00 being purchased by approximately 100 members.
The original pro-shop was built in 1968. It housed the pro shop,
storage and clubhouse for approximately two summers.
In 1969-70, under the leadership of Gaetan Rivard, the clubhouse was
constructed. Pedersen Concrete Ltd. laid the blocks and the owners along with other
workers built the structure. The clubhouse was practically completed (with the exception
of the windows and porch) when a twister touched down. It tore the roof off and relocated
a majority of it on 9th green. This happened on the Thursday prior to the
Saturday of the opening day scheduled.
Approximately 50 members got together and rebuilt the roof in time
for the Saturday celebrations as scheduled. Fortunately, insurance was purchased and the
clubhouse was back to original shape a month after the storm
In the year 1969, the first Civic Tournament was held on the long
weekend of August. The Jim Sargent /NorthernTel Mobility Civic Tournament continues to be
held every year on the same weekend.
The original nine greens were rebuilt in 1969, spear headed by Jim
Sargent. Ladies and mens night began the same year and are still going strong.
In 1985, Junior Lessons were introduced. A third building, an
equipment shed, was built with the help of a Wintario grant.
In 1986 the New Liskeard Golf Club hosted the 60th
Northern Golf Association Amateur Golf Tournament as well as the Northern Canadian
Professional Golfers Association Pro Championship. One of the golfers that took part in
the Pro Championship was Bob Pannisuk. He was considered the best Canadian golfer at the
time. During these years, trees were being planted to embellish the golf course. They
required fast growing trees, therefore, weeping willows were planted which are now causing
some drainage problems. Through the years, tees were upgraded and new ones were added.
By approximately 1990, all shares had been bought back and the Wabi
Valley holding company had been dissolved.
In the 90s Dave Morland from North Bay golfed at the New
Liskeard Golf Club and he has participated on the PGA tour off and on since 2001. Another
renowned celebrity that golfed every summer at the club was Lloyd Robertson.
Membership grew to about 300 members, which created problems. A
bigger golf course was needed and that is when the members decided to start construction
of the back nine in 1991.
Steve Shepherdson designed the back nine along with his father Don
Shepherdson, who was the project supervisor.
A lot of the discussions were held by phone since Steve Shepherdson
at the time resided in Thailand. Don Shepherdson coordinated this project and if answers
and explanations were needed, he would contact his son. It took five seasons to build the
back nine. Free Labour was obtained from the Government Section 25, to help realize
this project. With the assistance of these men, along with the co-operation of the
superintendent of the golf course (since their equipment was required), the project was
put together and the back nine was born. Peter Grant, of Grant Development, was a great
supporter of the golf course. He donated all the heavy equipment that was needed to do the
heavy work required to make the back nine come to life. The members extend their thanks to
Peter Grant, because without his support, this project could not have been realized.
A new well was required along with five miles of tile drainage and
five ponds, to be able to water the greens, tees and fairways for the back nine. The tile
drainage fills the ponds with warm water which helps the growth better than cold.
Upon the Ministry of Environments request, a half mile of ditch
was dug along the full length of the western boundary, to accumulate the overflow so no
water would flood Herb MacLeans farm. All excess water then runs back into the Wabi
During the 1991 project of the back nine, a 6-inch line was run to
edge of the front nine. The course designers and developers assured that the pumping
system, wells and ponds would be sufficient to water all 18 holes and not just the new
The existing Pro-Shop was built in 1995.
The back nine opening ceremonies took place in 1996. Present for the
ribbon cutting were Reeve Carmen Kidd, Mr. and Mrs. Don Shepherdson, Steve Shepherdson and
his wife Stephanie, Sue Shepherdson, Golf Club President Alvin Williard, Jim Sargent,
Walter Chatwin and Bob Taylor. Steve Shepherdson traveled from Singapore to attend the
opening ceremonies. Don, Ruth, Steve and Sue Shepherdson played the first official round
on the back nine immediately following the ceremonies.
The Northern Ontario Senior Amateur Tournament was held here in 2000.
In the year 2000, water from the ponds on the back nine was pumped to
the front nine to complete the warm water irrigation system.
Also, in the year 2000, renovations were commenced on the clubhouse.
The kitchen was expanded and a new roof was installed. In 2001, the upstairs and locker
rooms were expanded.
The New Liskeard Golf Club is still going strong and membership
continues to grow. In 2004, a partnership was agreed upon with the Haileybury Golf Club to
allow for Duel Memberships to be purchased. This has proven to be nothing but positive for
A POEM BY JIM SARGENT
Seldom in one
Do you have a
dream come true,
But back in
for quite a few.
A golf course
for New Liskeard,
Some said it
couldn't be done,
But now it's
And we're out
there, supposedly having fun.
We know it's
not Glen Abbey,
As some people
think it should be,
But man you
should have seen it
was the driving force
"We're in luck!",
And out there
nearly every day
You could see
an Ebert truck.
after the electrical work
the water lines,
supplied the dump trucks
planted some pines.
delivered the refreshments
And all the
guys chipped in,
She managed to
raise enough money
To buy all the
cups and pins.
looked after the portable bar
Mac Steele was
our "galloping gourmet",
always paid the bills
And kept the
Ott Gibson and
Shep cut the fairways
Wilf Ryan was
the roofing guy,
loved to drag the greens
Decked out in
a white shirt and tie.
think of miracles
Swaggert's name holds sway,
But thanks to
A miracle came
At a cost of
He built this
But on the
week of our opening
A tornado came
Blew the roof
off our clubhouse
Much to our
But the good
people of New Liskeard came
And in just
The roof was
back in place
And the party
years is a long, long time
No matter what
that lengthy period
friends slipped away.
Morgan Grant, Ron Dobson, Bob Henderson,
Ken Ebert, Mac Steele, Wilf Ryan, Ron Hilson,Ott Gibson,
Pollock, Grant Moore, Clayton Perrin, Don Perrin, Jack Lacarte, all
left the race,
they're golfing somewhere,
In a much,
much better place.