Clarence Valley Independent

Yamba Ladies Golf – 40 year Ruby Anniversary

Yamba Lady Golfers celebrated their ‘Ruby’ anniversary with many visitors from other clubs playing golf in their 3 day Annual Tournament, last week.  The tournament is a highlight of our golfing calendar and has become a tradition over the past forty years. At one time the event was over 2 days under the name of Diamond Coast Yamba Tournament. 

Our Tournament has had a few changes in the past. In 1986 the Tournament was over three days and later another day was added on the Sunday to run the Foursomes. However, the three day event reigns supreme and we now have a fashion parade with clothes supplied from the local clothing shops, displayed by our local models. The dinner night has a show of local dance artists and tappers and the committee ladies and solo artists, have a time slot on this night.  We love to watch the young women who are an international and local dance troupe now, taught by Adele Lewis from Clarence Valley Dance Academy, and the more mature ladies who comprise Rebecca Spears Lady Tappers.

Our committee’s inception was similar to lots of country golf clubs where a group of likeminded people set up a club committee, part of which was the ladies’ section. The ladies were known as Associates and managed the catering, assisted with fundraising and Course management upkeep, which was all voluntary.

We helped by weeding the Greens and filling divots on the mainly, sandy fairways. In some cases roaming sheep and cattle were employed to keep the fairways in order but players were not deterred from playing the game and a “club-length” preferred lie became a local rule. We always had grass Greens at Yamba once the 9 holes was established and it was extended from time to time over the years and 1981 saw another three holes to enable the better golfers to play a different course. Eventually the course was completed by the always generous sponsorship from town people and businesses, and with our Club’s finances which became available periodically. Fortunately, effluent water has enabled the watering of bushes and trees and we now enjoy beautiful well watered fairways provided by the newly installed sewerage works.

Over the years our ladies committee, like others, has experienced assistance from the golf unions of NSWLGU and WGNSW to promote the game within the women’s ranks, by encouraging exhibition matches by professional lady golfers. The lady pros would give a teaching clinic on the day as well. Betty Dalgleish, Australian Proette, accompanied by USLPGA representative Nancy Tourney came to Yamba some years ago. I can’t help thinking that this idea was a pre runner to the events we now have at our club, named Pro AMS. Today, even golf is a timely game with women and men now paying similar membership fees and belonging to a joint NSW and Australian Golf Union.

After all these years, our volunteers still provide a stable base for our invitation events, so we especially would like to thank everyone who gave freely of their time during last week. We appreciate your help and expertise. Trophy donors and cash donors, thank you. John Wright Club Professional is an integral part of our golf club and our annual tournament.  We thank John and wife Natasha sincerely for the extra yards.

Jeannie Doolan

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