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In 1867 Miniature Golf Was Invented For Women

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Annually the second Saturday in May recognizes National Miniature Golf Day.

Similar to the sport of golf, but as the name suggests it is a miniature version of the game. While still played with a series of 9 or 18 holes, miniature golf courses are shorter, usually themed and have a variety of obstacles which add to the difficulty of the game.

Some of the more challenging miniature golf courses have waterfalls, caverns and castles with drawbridges as part of their obstacle course.

  • The Illustrated London News made mention of the earliest documented minigolf course in its June 8, 1912, edition.
  • The first standardized minigolf courses to enter into commercial mass-production was Thistle Dhu in 1916 in Pinehurst, North Carolina, and the Tom Thumb patented design of Garnet Carter from Lookout Mountain, Tennessee in 1927.
  • The first mini golf course is the Ladies’ Putting Club located in St. Andrews, Scotland. Built in 1867, the mini golf course was built for women since it was, at that time, considered inappropriate for ladies to take a full swing at the golf ball.
  • In the early 1900s, mini golf was referred to as “Garden Golf” and was played on real grass. Later, bumpers, or rails, were installed to provide boundaries for the golf holes.
  • The first documented mini golf competitions were held in 1930 at Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga, Tennessee. There were over 200 participants from 30 states.
  • Some indoor mini golf courses have glow-in-the-dark mini golf! Monster mini golf has indoor mini golf courses across the country that are monster-themed, glow-in-the-dark courses. Indoor mini golf is popular in northern climates such as Finland and Canada. Indoor mini golf can be played year-around in a climate-controlled environment. It also allows more elaborate obstacles that don’t have to withstand brutal northern weather such as snow or ice.


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