On September 6,1930, four local property owners, Messrs. Drake, Clear, Titus and Wharton, filed with the State of Michigan, Articles of Association for the formation of a corporation to be known as Twin Beach Golf, Riding and Country Club "to provide an accessible place for the wholesome and healthful recreation for its members and their families, and to develop and operate a social club; to maintain and operate on such land, club houses, golf grounds ... and to develop and maintain such Club and such property for the mutual welfare and benefit of the Club members".
Prior to the incorporation, golf was played at Twin Beach. The course was constructed during 1928 and 1929.
At that time, the first tee was what is now No. 5 and the former greens keeper's house which was located just east of the current cart barn was where you signed in to play. The first Club Championship was held in September 1930. By then the first tee had been moved to the location of the old Pro Shop, the present No. 12. The present No. 3 tee was a practice green.
Before 1954, Twin Beach was strictly a 9-hole course with 9 tees. Following a realignment of holes due to location of a new clubhouse on the course in that year, interest was added by gradually expanding the number of tees so that there are now 18 different holes; the last change being the relocation of Nos. 9 and 18 tees in 1980 on new land purchased for them.
Membership as outlined in the Articles of Association in 1930 was to be limited to lot owners in certain West Bloomfield Township subdivisions. C. E. Drake was named as the Club's first president.
One of the prime concerns was definite boundaries for Twin Beach Golf, Riding and Country Club, which necessarily excluded some property owners in the original real estate development. Under pressure by the management of the real estate developers to admit all property owners to the Club, the Board agreed for certain considerations, one of which was the construction of another nine golf holes by the developer, to turn the charter over to the developer, Frank S. Salter "for a period of ten years, he was to maintain, operate and manage all ... facilities in an efficient and reasonable manner".
As part of the agreement, Salter was permitted to change the name and to appoint a new Board of Directors. This he did and Dudley E. Whiting was elected second president of the now, newly named Twin Beach Country Club.
Twin Beach Country Club was born in the depths of the Depression and like everyone who grew up in those troubled years, its destiny and very existence was shaped by the hard times. From the very beginning, the effort to develop and maintain the Club was difficult. Even the $5.00 annual maintenance fee was hard to come by and many members were constantly delinquent.
The earlier, well-intentioned promises of the developer to promote the club and develop additional facilities soon fell victim to the times. As the Depression deepened, the chances for an additional nine holes and other facilities went glimmering. With the Bank Holiday in 1933 went all hopes for outside help.
The Board realized that with the bondholders (Union Guardian Trust Co.) unable to release funds for club operation, the members must take over. The Board petitioned the Trust Co. for supervisory power over Club affairs and it was granted. Finally, in 1939, the Club successfully sued in Oakland County Circuit Court to compel release of Club properties and conveyance to the Club.
The "New" or "Golf" clubhouse was built in 1925 and was located nearer the golf course, on Forbush and Richardson and is presently a nursing home. Both clubhouses served the social needs of the community until, in 1954, a new clubhouse was built on the course to provide better facilities for golfing members.
During the winter of 1953, plans for our present clubhouse were initiated. It was then that planning for locating, building and financing went forward. At the spring meeting on April 3, 1954, the plans were given a final approval by the membership, work began and the clubhouse was ready for the start of the 1955 season.
If you can picture the present clubhouse without the dining room, without the larger part of the men's locker room, without the club storage area and with an open porch, you'll have a good idea of what the clubhouse looked like. It wasn't until 1958 that these were added.
Also, in 1958, a comprehensive program for watering the fairways was initiated. A planned program for a new well and pump and necessary pipe to water fairways 6, 7, 8 and 9 was approved. When the benefits of this program became obvious to the members, the balance of the course soon had watered fairways also.
As anyone who was a member before 1960 knows, Twin Beach came by its name legitimately. Here were beaches, at least five of them, located on Middle and Upper Straits Lakes. Two of the beaches, at the foot of Middle Straits where it meets Green Lake Road, were called Twin Beach and probably gave the subdivision and hence our club that name.
Through all its fifty-plus years, Twin Beach Country Club has faithfully served the recreational needs of thousands. We, on its current roster, must acknowledge our debt to those who preceded us as well as our obligation to those who follow.