For Immediate Release
Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Contact: Sarah Revell
Babe Zaharias Golf Course in Tampa Featured as Florida Historic Golf Trail Course of the Month
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Secretary of State Ken Detzner announced today that Babe Zaharias Golf Course, located in the city of Tampa in Hillsborough County, has been chosen as the featured course on the Florida Historic Golf Trail for the month of June.
“We are pleased to feature Babe Zaharias Golf Course as a partner on the Florida Historic Golf Trail,” said Secretary Detzner. “This course, locally known as ‘The Babe’, has an impressive history related to one of the world’s greatest female athletes of the 20th century. Only 20 minutes from downtown Tampa, this course continues to challenge golfers of all skill levels.”
Image Courtesy of Babe Zaharias Golf Course
In the 1920s, the B. L. Hamner Organization created a 2,000-acre development known as the North Side Country Club area, which was to feature two 18-hole golf courses. Only one course, the Forest Hills Golf and Country Club, was built, and it opened in 1926. The golf course was designed and built by J. Franklin Meehan, a landscape architect and golf course builder from Philadelphia.
In 1950, Mildred Ella "Babe" Didrikson Zaharias, one of the world’s greatest female athletes of the 20th century, became the winter golf professional for the club. That same year, she and her husband George purchased the golf course and changed the name to the Tampa Golf and Country Club. Zaharias lived in Tampa until her death in 1956 at age 45, and the golf course was abandoned for many years after her passing. In 1974, the City of Tampa re-opened the golf course and named it in her honor.
The 18-hole, par-70 Babe Zaharias Golf Course features four sets of tees playing from 4,800 to 6,000 yards. Located in the tree-lined residential neighborhood of Forest Hills, this short course plays very tight and will provide a real test for the average golfer. To enjoy a true Tampa Bay area tradition, playing a round of golf at “The Babe” is a must.
"It is truly an honor to have Babe Zaharias Golf Course selected as the Florida Historic Golf Trail’s featured course for June 2017,” said Kennie Sims, Vice President of Golf Operations. “We are extremely proud to manage a golf course with such historical significance to be named after an iconic athlete like Babe Zaharias. We take great pride in providing a first class experience for our guests and making Babe Zaharias a desirable destination for golfers of all skill levels.”
For more information about the Babe Zaharias Golf Course, click here. To learn more about the Florida Historic Golf Trail, visit floridahistoricgolftrail.com or find us on Facebook at Facebook.com/FloridaHistoricGolfTrail.
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About The Florida Historic Golf Trail
Florida's golf history, recognized as one of the oldest in the nation, dates back to the late 1800s when a number of early courses were created along with the development of railroads and hotels in the state. The Florida Historic Golf Trail is a collection of more than 50 historic, publicly accessible golf courses throughout the state that can still be played on today. Through the Florida Historic Golf Trail, golfers can play on courses designed by world-class architects and played by famous golfers such as Bobby Jones, Walter Hagen, Gene Sarazen, Babe Zaharias, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus. Information about the history and current day contact information for each partner course can be found at FloridaHistoricGolfTrail.com. Find the historic course near you and Come Play on History!
About the Division of Historical Resources
The Florida Department of State’s Division of Historical Resources (DHR) is responsible for preserving and promoting Florida’s historical, archaeological, and folk culture resources. The Division Director’s office oversees a grants-in-aid program to help preserve and maintain Florida’s historic buildings and archaeological sites; coordinates outreach programs such as the State Historic Markers program and the Florida Folklife program which identifies and promotes the state's traditional culture. DHR directs historic preservation efforts throughout the state in cooperation with state and federal agencies, local governments, private organizations, and individuals. The Division Director serves as the State Historic Preservation Officer, acting as the liaison with the national historic preservation program conducted by the National Park Service. The Division is comprised of two Bureaus, archaeological research and historic preservation. For more information, visit flheritage.com.