The Hickory Corner: National Hickory Day set for May 1

Updated: March 1, 2016

By Brian Giboney, Special To Inside Golf
Welcome back to The Hickory Corner where we explore hickory golf (golf with pre- 1935 equipment). Mark May 1, 2016 on your calendars – if you love golf and the history of golf, May 1 is set to be the first annual National Hickory Golf Day.

Puyallup, Wash. resident Durel Billy was searching for a way to share what he calls “hickory love” with as many people as possible across the country and came up with the idea to hold a National Hickory Golf Day each year. People across the country will participate in this unique event in a variety of ways. As a day to demo hickory clubs for first timers, play in a hickory golf tournament, have hickory clubs appraised, trade hickory golf clubs, learn golf history, wear period attire and win an award for best dressed to name a few. Golf clubs and associations across the country are registering on a dedicated website so interested golfers and hickory era collectors can get in on the fun.

To learn more about the day, and where hickory golf enthusiasts in your area will be gathering to participate, visit The website will allow groups of people register or individuals who are not near a planned event can still participate by registering. After National Hickory Day the website will recap the various activities that took place as well as publish photos sent in by particpants. For those of you in the Seattle area who want to celebrate National Hickory Golf Day there will be a demo day at Meadow Park Golf Course in Tacoma as well as a golf tournament on the 18 holes course and casual play on the Williams 9 course. Rental clubs will be available.

In addition to National Hickory Golf Day it is worth noting a few other dates around the hickory golf world this 2016AD. Hickory golf has grown to the point where a four major season is now being developed. A brief history lesson on the modern games’ major season – many think the current four majors were selected when the Masters was established in 1934, but it wasn’t until 1960 when Arnold Palmer won both the Masters and U.S. Open to open the season that the current four majors were selected.

This past year Scottish hickory golfer & historian Lionel Freedman declared the four hickory majors as being the World Hickory Match Play Championship, the Swedish Hickory Open, the United States Hickory Open, and the World Hickory Open.

The World Hickory Match Play will be contested May 23-25th at the Philadelphia Cricket Club. The Swedish Hickory Open will be held in Borås, Sweden on August 6-7th at the Hans Jagenburg Golf Course. The United States Hickory Open will be contested at The Links of Lawsonia in Green Lake, Wisconsin on September 22-24th and the final leg of the grand slam – the World Hickory Open will be held at Carnousite, Scotland October 10-14th, 2016.

These are exciting times in the hickory golf world. Events are getting more organized, more people are finding out how fun it is to play wood shafted golf and the hickory major landscape has become more clear. Stay tuned to The Hickory Corner as it will keep you informed of how the hickory majors go as well as National Hickory Golf Day.

Brian Giboney has been a freelance contributor to Parachutist magazine since 1999 and does freelance for Inside Golf as well.