Riverwood Golf Course History 1969 – 2019

50th Anniversary Riverwood Golf Course 1969 – 2019

  • 1963 Members of the Bismarck Golf Association appear before the Board of
    Park Commissioners to propose a second golf course to be located next to Riverside Park.
  • 1967 Bids are awarded by the Bismarck Board of Park Commissioners to construct a new 18-hole golf course in south Bismarck.
  • 1969 A contest is held to name the new golf course. A committee of three chooses Marilyn Duffey of Mandan as the winner and the course is to be named Riverwood Golf Club. The course will cover 150 acres and will be near the Missouri River and south of the Dakota Zoo.
  • June 21, 1969 Riverwood course dedication is held.
  • 1970 KFYR offers to sponsor a golf tournament. This tournament will become an annual event for many years.
  • 1974 Board of Park Commissioners approves offering cross country skiing at Riverwood.
  • 1976 Green fees were $4 for weekdays and $5 for weekends and holidays. The concession area was called the Coke and Sandwedge Bar. Three rain shelters are built by the ND National Guard as a community service project.
  • 1988 The Dakota Junior Golf Association starts working with Bismarck Parks and Recreation District (BPRD) to provide youth lessons. Over 300 youth took lessons this summer. This partnership is still in place. The course comes through the drought in ND
    quite well with the help of a newly installed irrigation system.
  • 1989 Cart paths were resurfaced and extended, and forward tees were constructed.
  • 1990 The cart shed/shop was built. A special archery season is held to reduce the deer herd. The archery seasons continue to be held as necessary. The highest rounds of golf played in the history of Riverwood was in 1990 with 50,242 rounds of golf.
  • 1990 Tom O’Leary Golf Course opened with 18 holes.
  • 1991 The golf shop at Riverwood was expanded.
  • 1993 Portions of the course flooded. Golf ball size hail did some damage on the course, but staff worked quickly to do the repairs. Phase II of the cart path project was completed.
  • 1994 A new putting green was completed, and trees were planted throughout the course.
  • 1997 New bunkers on holes #10-11-12 were finished and an addition on the maintenance building was completed. Fore Seasons Center opened, and the construction of Pebble Creek Golf Course began.
  • 1998 Pebble Creek Golf Course was completed in 1998 and there was a full season of play in 1999.
  • 1999 Cart paths on holes #3-4-6 were raised and repaired and 65 trees were planted.
  • 2000 Additional irrigation lines were installed, along with a new tee box on hole #12.
  • 2004 New bunkers were finished on holes #13-15-18.
  • 2006 Golf Digest and Golfweek magazine named Riverwood Golf Course as one of the top five public golf courses to play in North Dakota. Riverwood would be on this prestigious list in 2007, 2008, 2014, and 2015.
  • 2007 There were 70 spruce trees that were transplanted. Other tasks involved the renovation of bunkers on hole # 1-2-5-14. Parking lot improvements were made.
  • 2008 Concrete benches were added, and the staff did lots of watering of new trees in a very dry year.
  • 2009 Building repairs in the flooded pro shop and cart shed were completed.
  • 2010 Sand bunker renovations were completed. Cross country skiing is becoming more and more popular.
  • 2011 Major flooding of the Missouri River impacted all of south Bismarck. The course opened in late April but closed on May 23. The equipment and furnishings of Riverwood was relocated to higher ground. The Riverwood parking lot was a staging area for the National Guard, and the club house became headquarters for the Guard for nearly three months. Course repairs started in September.
  • 2012 A new irrigation system is installed at Riverwood. Nine holes of the course opened on July 2 and 12 holes were opened by late summer, with various holes opening and closing due to the irrigation system installation. Course repair and recovery continued throughout the season. Almost the entire course was re-seeded and 300 trees were planted to replace the dead and dying trees.
  • 2013 All 18 holes opened May 7th; a late opening due to severe spring storms. New tee areas, forward of the original tees, were added.
  • 2015 The men’s locker room was remodeled, and two wind events caused the course to be closed for a short period of time. Tree plantings throughout the course continue.
  • 2016 A new overlay in the cart parking area was completed. Golf cars were able to drive on the fairways using the 90-degree rule and a new GPS system.
    Fall maintenance tasks were completed and the course opened for a few additional playing days in November, making a combined total of 231 days of golf at BPRD courses.
  • 2017 Over 500 skiers attended a Flurry Fest cross country skiing event in February, and over 9,500 skiers enjoyed the Riverwood trails throughout the season. Fat tire bike trails are added as a winter offering. The GPS systems on the golf carts become very popular. A “Twilight Rate” for weekend golfers is established at all courses and receives favorable response.
  • 2018 The 18 holes at Riverwood are “flipped” and golfers enjoy the change and new configuration.
  • 2019 Riverwood Golf Course celebrates 50 years with a re-dedication program and a “Movie in the Park” on August 2.
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