Our HERITAGE

First and foremost...a family-oriented club.

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Summerlea is a club rooted in

History and  Tradition

. . . yet progressive in approach and delivery of membership programs and activities.

Summerlea values camaraderie and friendship amongst our members as one of our defining characteristics.

 

Important moments in the history of Summerlea

The history of Summerlea, as is the case with so many older golf clubs in Canada, began in a location other than where it presently is situated. It was at its original site in Lachine that the club first gained the distinction as one of the finest in the country. 

In 1920, the remnants of the First World War were all but forgotten. The recovery years brought prosperity as the revitalization of Montreal was just taking hold. At the same time, the game of golf was reaching a feverish pitch forcing the Montreal Golf Association to rename its banner as of The Province of Quebec Golf Association.

1921

1921

Land purchased

Land purchased at the site of a former town called “Summerlea”.

Willie Park, Jr., course designer from Scotland, headed the 2-year construction.park

1921

1922

1922

Summerlea incorporated

Summerlea is incorporated and membership grows to 400+ shareholders and 200+ lady members. Temporary clubhouse & 9-holes used for 1st season. Expected completion June 1, 1923 for 27-holes.

1923

June 30, 1923

Opening ceremonies

Official opening ceremonies including the course christening and both men’s & ladies’ competitions.
The Summerlea “family-oriented club” was on it’s way!

Jock R. Brown, of Scottish descent, named club professional.

jock

1923

1924

May 1924

Clubhouse completed

Completion of clubhouse, 2 1/2 stories high with verandas on 3 sides.  Its large dining facility could accomodate 125 people.

club

1924 - 1928

- Through the years -

1924 Quebec Junior Championship

The first major provincial golf event held at the club, this would be the first of many major provincial and national championship tournaments, both professional and amateur, played at Summerlea.

1926 CPGA Championship

1928 Canadian Amateur

1924 - 1928

1929

1929

The Great Depression

Market crash and the start of the Great Depression. During the decade of the "Dirty Thirties", over 600 golf clubs across North America closed their doors.  Summerlea struggled onward, through severe financial difficulties.

1931 - 1944

- Through the years -

1931 Quebec Amateur & Open

1935 Canadian Open

1936 Quebec Senior

1938 Quebec Junior Championship

1939 Quebec Amateur

1943 Quebec Open

1944 Quebec Senior Championship

1931 - 1944

1944

1944

War & bankruptcy

In the midst of World War II, Summerlea was forced into bankruptcy.

1945

1945

Out of the ruins

Senator Donat Raymond came into the picture and became the greatest benefactor of the club's history.  

Unselfishly, Raymond purchased the property from the liquidators and leased the club back to the members. One year later, the members again resumed ownership, while Raymond held the mortgage and sat on the Board of Directors.

donat

1945

1946

1946

Head Pro Walter Lilly

Walter Lilly replaced Roland Huot as the head professional.

Born in Lachine, Lilly began his association with Summerlea at a very young age and rose through the caddie ranks to become assistant to Professional Jock Brown. His golf career had been temporarily interrupted by the outbreak of World War II in 1939.

 

1947

1947

Quebec Senior Championship

1947

1949

Sep 13, 1949

Disaster strikes

A fire destroyed the clubhouse and all its contents. Once again, Donat Raymond came to the rescue and worked out a suitable arrangement for the club to rebuild.

1950 - 1960

- Through the years -

1950 CPGA Championship

1951 Quebec Amateur

1953 Quebec Senior Championship

1954 Quebec Open

1957 Quebec Senior Championship

1958 Quebec Senior Championship

1959 Quebec Senior Championship

1960 Quebec Open

 

1950 - 1960

1961

1961

Relocation

With ever increasing taxes and urban expansion encroaching on the club, the Summerlea Directors commissioned Geoffrey Cornish to design two 18-hole courses- the 6,845 yard par-72 Dorion and the 7,005 yard par-72 Cascades. 

1962

1962

Quebec Amateur

1962

1962

1962

New clubhouse construction

While Cornish was busy shaping the land, the architects firm of Affleck, Desbarats, Dimakopoulas, Lebensold, Michaud & Sise was selected to design the clubhouse.

The proposal of a bright and airy contemporary style is well-received. Positioned at the highest point of a cliff, the clubhouse offered spectacular views from its balconies.

house

1963

Jun 6, 1963

A true loss

Senator Donat Raymond dies, only a few months after the relocation of Summerlea to its new site after being totally consumed by fire.

Walter Lilly retired, in ill health.

1963

1964

1964

Alan Ogilvy, Club Pro

With the completion of the clubhouse, the members welcomed the arrival of a new professional, Alan Ogilvy.

Under his supervision, the junior program thrived.

ao

1966 - 1975

- Through the years -

1966 Canadian Amateur

1971 Quebec Open

1975 Quebec Amateur

1966 - 1975

1976

1976

Bruce Fry, Club Pro

Alan Ogilvy was replaced by Bruce Fry, who came from the Hermitage Golf Club in Magog, Quebec, where he worked as an assistant for his father.

fry

1979

1979

Duke Doucet, Club Pro

Duke Doucet replaced Bruce Fry, becoming the sixth head professional at Summerlea. 

Mr. Doucet first arrived at the Club as an assistant to Fry in 1976. 

Not only was Mr. Doucet a successful amateur and professional golfer, he was voted "Professional of the Year" in 1990 and 1992, and also served the golfing community as President and Captain of the Quebec PGA as well as  Director of the Canadian PGA.

TRULY, A SUMMERLEA HERO
AND LEGEND.

duke

 

1979

1980 - 1996

- Through the years -

1980 Chairman's invitational

1980 Quebec Amateur

1981 LPGA Peter Jackson Classic

1991 Quebec Amateur

1996 Canadian Men's Senior

1996 PGA Export "A" Skins Game (Fred Couples, Nick Faldo, Nick Price, Ernie Els)

1999

1999

Jim Vandette, Club Pro

Duke Doucet became Director of Golf in 1999 and Jim Vandette became the 7th Head Professional.

Jim had been a junior member of the club, attended university in the Southern U.S., and worked as Associate Pro to Duke for 3 years prior to becoming the Head Pro.

jimvandette 1

1999

2001 - 2002

- Through the years -

2001 Canadian Ladies' Senior

2002 LPGA Bank of Montreal Classic

 

2015 - 2018

- Through the years -

2015 Canadian Junior Boys' Championship

2018 Montreal Regional Junior Division 5

2015 - 2018

2018

Aug 2018

Summerlea sold to private investors

Tough financial years and industry-wide challenges caused Summerlea membership to decline due to fears of assessment and financial instability.

In August of 2018, Summerlea Golf & Country Club is sold to a group of local businessmen:  Raymond Allard, Jean-Marie Bourassa, Marcel Bourassa, Bernard Lefebvre and Sylvain Ménard.  The new owners commence clubhouse renovations, as well as bringing on board Mr. Marco Jetté as the new General Manager.  Mr. Jetté’s experience and financial expertise, in combination with solid financial backing from the new owners, will help guide Summerlea into a sound future.

 

2019

- Through the years -

2019 Montreal Amateur D4

2019

The history of the club was researched and written by golf writer, Tim McKeown. He would gratefully like to acknowledge the cooperation of Karen Hewson from the RCGA and Marion Dunn of Summerlea for the information provided.