Nostalgia, as once famed Canadian writer Pierre Berton used to say, is one of our most powerful emotions. His formidable output of successful explorations of Canadian history firmly attested to that viewpoint.
That may explain a sudden urge experienced in a weekend drive up the Ottawa Valley to re-visit the scene of many scores of enjoyable outings on the friendly contours of Dragon Fly Golf Course on the Opeongo Road near Renfrew. Though scores is perhaps not an altogether pertinent term, our golfing prowess seldom if ever rose to competitive levels, but gave us ample pleasure in pursuing little white balls whizzing about fairways and trickling across the greens.
Drawn to this newly opened course by moderate rates and our Corporate Golf cards, we lucked in with the appointment as Golf Pro of our friend Kevin Brown, whom we knew from his previous gig as assistant to Golf Pro Tim Cole at Pine View Golf Course in Ottawa. Moreover, it was Kevin who organized a delightful golfing week in South Carolina for a group of enthusiasts from Pine View. I joined up, along with my friend and former Transport Canada Public Affairs colleague Norm Pascoe for the only time I ever travelled south for golf or anything else.
As usual, my golfing endeavours were not remarkable but I earned some credits for playing the group photographer, producing a colourful album celebrating highlights of the week’s adventures.
Playing at Dragonfly began in the 1960s when we joined Corporate Golf, which charged a moderate seasonal membership plus a bare minimum fee – initially $9 per game-for playing at any of 25 or so area golf courses. Courses ranged all over the map from Pine View and others in the city to clubs as far away as Upper Canada near Morrisburg, Buckingham, Renfrew, Cobden, Calabogie and Cassselman. But it was Dragonfly in Renfrew that drew us most often. Just a 9-hole course at the beginning, it expanded to 18 holes a couple of years later. When it did, the one hour drive from home proved well worth it for the four or five hours spent at play and occasional post game socializing.
It must be a dozen or so years since we last played at Dragonfly, having moved on to join the Cedar Glen Golf club in Williamsburg, near Morrisburg, but the memories linger on. Now styled the Dragon Fly Golf Links, and under new ownership, the club looks a lot posher, with a splendid log-style club house added since our day, so it seems to be doing quite well. Our friend Kevin retired a few years ago Long may our old course prosper!