In the 1940's and early 50's the President of Spokane's Park Board, Lawrence Hamblen, had the idea to establish a golf course in Northeast Spokane.
He approached the President of the Athletic Round Table, Mr. Joe Albi, to assist in the endeavor. The Athletic Round Table (A.R.T.) was a group of businessmen in Spokane interested in promoting Spokane Athletics and having fun.
Pick Your Horse
Among their many ventures was the sponsorship of a race horse called Esmeralda. Esmeralda was not an overly successful race horse, nevertheless, the A.R.T. adopted Esmeralda as their mascot to highlight the light hearted nature of the group.
Over a period of years the A.R.T. acquired the land on which the course now sits and donated it to the City. In addition to the land, the A.R.T. also funded and built the Clubhouse.
They did all of this on the condition that the course MUST be called Esmeralda, and that the logo they established for Esmeralda be the course logo, and we still use it today.
Legend has it that the remains of Esmeralda are buried under the small mound fronting the front of the 13th green.
In keeping with their fun loving attitude, the golf course opened on April Fool's Day in 1956 and included a simulated volcanic eruption on the adjacent Beacon Hill using old fireworks and other explosives.
Esmeralda hosted the First National Senior Open in 1957 and hosted an LPGA Tour Event, the Spokane Women's Open, in the early 1960's.
That's how we got here. We're very proud of our course's history and we look forward to serving our community and making our public course the best it can possibly be for a long time to come. We'll see you out at the course!