Nashville touts the Country Music Hall of Fame and Cleveland is home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Pro Football Hall of Fame is in Canton, Ohio and the Baseball Hall of Fame is found in Cooperstown, New York. Now Myrtle Beach can be added to this prestigious list of Hall of Fame locales.
With more than 100 Myrtle Beach golf courses in the Grand Strand area today and decades’ worth of golf history on these sandy shores, it is no surprise that Myrtle Beach should feature its own Golf Hall of Fame. Dubbed the “Golf Capital of the World” Myrtle Beach is on the worldwide radar for golf.
The Myrtle Beach Golf Hall of Fame is a permanent monument that opened in March 2009 in the Pine Lakes Country Club Hall of Fame Garden. It honors those who have been instrumental in attracting millions of golfers to Myrtle Beach golf courses, thereby shaping the Myrtle Beach golf industry.
Six Myrtle Beach golf industry leaders were inducted into the Myrtle Beach Golf Hall of Fame in 2009:
W. Cecil Brandon, Jr. tapped into his marketing finesse to bring global attention to Myrtle Beach golf courses and he helped found Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday.
Clay Brittain, Jr. is an original partner of the Myrtle Beach National Company, which is one of the Southeast’s largest accommodations and golf course ownership groups and he played a key role in establishing the PGA golf degree at Coastal Carolina University.
Carolyn Cassidy Cudone holds 10 U.S. Women’s Senior Amateur Championship titles and was honored for establishing the Myrtle Beach Junior Golf Association.
Jimmy D’Angelo was the first golf pro at the prestigious Dunes Golf and Beach Club, which opened in 1948. His marketing skills and professional networks attracted writers to the beach beginning in 1954 so they could publish stories about the Myrtle Beach golf industry. This effort turned into the week-long, pre-Masters Golf Writers Association of American Championship golf tournament that put the spotlight on Myrtle Beach for more than 50 years.
General James F. Hackler, Jr. is a golf course developer who began combining tee times with accommodations for convenient golf packages and he attracted the 1977 LPGA Championship to Myrtle Beach.
Robert White was the original architect of the Ocean Forest Country Club, Myrtle Beach’s first golf course, which opened in 1927 and is now known as the Pine Lakes Country Club. He was also President of the United States Professional Golf Association of American from its 1916 founding until 1920.
A couple of marketing geniuses were inducted into the Myrtle Beach Golf Hall of Fame in 2010:
George W. “Buster” Bryan was a hotel developer who is known for his role in founding golf vacation packages that extended the tourist season into spring and fall.
Gary L. Schaal garnered national media attention to Myrtle Beach golf courses when he was president of the PGA of America from 1992 to 1993.
This year, two more golf industry legends were inducted into the Hall of Fame:
Charles W. Byers, Jr. is a founding member or developer of several golf courses throughout the Grand Strand, including the Dunes Golf and Beach Club, and he was instrumental in the creation of Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday and the Golf Course Owners Association.
Paul Himmelsbach is a golf course developer, founder of On The Green magazine and is largely responsible for marketing Myrtle Beach as a renowned golf destination. He also co-created the World Amateur Handicap.
The Significance of the Pine Lakes Country Club,
Home of the Myrtle Beach Golf Hall of Fame
Pine Lakes Country Club opened in 1927 as the Ocean Forest Golf Club. It was Myrtle Beach’s first golf resort. And it is widely known as the birthplace of Sports Illustrated magazine because in 1954 Time Inc. editors visited Pine Lakes to map their new weekly sports publication.
Myrtle Beach golf courses are full of history and tradition and at the same time the Myrtle Beach golf industry is a dynamic force in this seaside resort town. Recognizing those who have made such a contribution to the Myrtle Beach golf industry is par for the course.