By Liz Nolan, Contributing Writer
Juniper Hill Golf Course Manager Dudley Darling (l) and longtime employee Paul Kane. Photo/Liz Nolan
Northborough – Northborough’s 250th Anniversary Committee is gearing up for its golf outing Friday, Sept. 11, at Juniper Hill Golf Course. This is a fundraiser which will help to defray costs of upcoming events and activities being planned to celebrate Northborough’s milestone throughout 2016. The cost of the golf outing is $125 per person and the price includes entry into all events, 18 holes of golf, riding cart, breakfast, dinner and various awards. The awards presentation, dinner and auction will be held directly after golf. Non-golfers are invited to attend the dinner for $30 per person.
Online registration and payment is recommended at www.northborough250.org. The registration form is also available online to print and submit to Town of Northborough – 250th Committee, 63 Main St., Northborough, MA 01532. Registration on the day of the event will begin at 8 a.m. and only cash or money order will be accepted for payment. Tee time is 9 a.m.
Juniper Hill Golf Course is an important part of Northborough’s history. It’s General Manager and Vice President Dudley Darling shared some of the history of the golf course. His grandfather was the original owner and it was a farmhouse that was later converted. Darling’s grandparents lived there as well as running the business and small pro shop.
The current pro shop is located in the original section of the farm house. The oak posts and beams as well as the stone fireplace are still intact. Bricks from the original chimney were used to construct the fireplace in the newer Juniper Grille area. An old sign that used to be in front of the club house in the 1940s is now hung above that fireplace.
According to Darling, when Juniper Hill Golf Course opened in 1931, golf courses were a rarity. It had only nine holes. About 20 years later, another nine holes were added and in 1991 the second 18-hole course was constructed.
Paul Kane, an employee who has worked at Juniper Hill Golf Course for almost 30 years, has been a part of the changes in history at Juniper Hill Golf Course and Northborough in general. Kane remembers that the second hole on the old course became the second hole on the new course.
“Changes make things more interesting,” he said.
There have been a lot of changes in the game, too. Darling said he saw a popularity increase for the game in the late 1990s fueled by Tiger Woods. He also sees more women and kids play now.
“There has definitely been a turnaround for interest,” he said.
Other changes witnessed by Darling include improvements made to the equipment used to maintain the green and the materials used to manufacture golf clubs and balls.
Darling said learning the game of golf can be frustrating. His advice is to take a couple of lessons to build a good framework and form good habits.
“It’s one of the greatest games and a game that multi-generations in a family can play together,” he said.
For more information about Northborough’s 250th anniversary, visit www.northborough250.org, follow on Twitter @Northborogh250 or join the Northborough’s 250th Anniversary Celebration Facebook page.