50 Years Of Golf History At Dahlgreen Golf Club
By Tim Cotroneo
Back in 1969, there weren’t many birdies or eagles on the property that is now Dahlgreen Golf Club in Chaska, MN. What you would find were plenty of dairy cows on this agriculturally rich land that today stretches out to 6,700-yards from the tips.
As a new nine-hole venture, and after three years growing pains, in 1972 Dahlgreen converted to 18 holes. To say this transition proved successful is an understatement. In fact, this dairy farm turned golf enterprise is now 50 years young.
There are dozens of reasons for Dahlgreen’s decades of golf success. Here’s what you’ll discover when you drive to Chaska and play 18 holes at this longtime western Twin Cities golf favorite.
Land Steeped in History
The history that golfers feel when playing Dahlgreen may be because the township surrounding the golf course dates back almost 170 years. Imagine the stories Dahlgreen’s huge trees could tell. How far back are we talking regarding with this timeline? Dalgren township was named after an Admiral in the Civil War.
When it came to naming the golf course the Tessman family thought, “Why not play with the Dahlgren township name and add an “e.” Thus the name Dahlgreen was born.
The community of people that frequented the golf course in its early days were so trustworthy, that green fees were stuffed into a patron box nailed to a tree near the first tee box. Part of the Dahlgreen appeal today is the continued presence of genuine hospitality, along with the modern acceptance of major credit cards.
Greens Like No Other
Speak to any player, employee, or neighboring dairy cow, and you’ll hear the same refrain as to why the Dahlgreen of today is an ongoing success story. “We can’t say enough good things about our Superintendent, Keith Flatebo,” Head Pro Eric Wann said.
Flatebo has been Dahlgreen’s maestro of all things green since 1993. Rumor has it that when Minnesota’s winter season adds a coating of ice to Dahlgreen’s putting surfaces, Flatebo is out braving the cold and chipping the ice by hand.
In the summer of 2022, Dahlgreen again offers golfers the lushest of green conditions to match their renown hospitality. So, what can you expect when playing Dahlgreen for the first time?
A Chaska Classic
“There’s a very classic feel to our golf course. The best advice I can give golfers is to try and keep your tee shot within the tree lines,” Wann said.
The front nine is fairly generous and gives golfers ample time to find their game. By comparison, the back nine has more elevation changes. Most of Dahlgreen’s 18 holes are lined with hardwoods including maple, oak, and cedar trees, as well as the occasional willow.
The elevation highlight arrives at the Par 4, 373-yard, 10th hole tee box. The views from this vantage point leap all the way to the horizon. “Our sunsets from the 10th tee are awesome. I never get tired of this view,” Wann said.
Join Dahlgreen at Tournament Time
There are two Dahlgreen tournaments that draw from all over the Twin Cities. The emphasis on these tourneys is as much about fun as it is about scoring.
On Saturday, July 9, Dahlgreen is home to The Big Cup Tournament. Watch your scores go down as the putts drop with the tourney’s 8-inch putting cups.
On Saturday, October 29, you’ll want to enter the Frosty Pumpkin. This is a two-player alternate shot event that is a can’t miss for the hearty golfer who doesn’t want his or her season to ever end.
Get Your Kicks at Sticks
Once you’ve got your 18 holes in at Dahlgreen, it’s hard to resist another heaping helping of Chaska hospitality at Sticks Restaurant. You can’t go wrong with a burger, wrap, BLT, Philly, flatbread, or a clubhouse sandwich, along with your choice of a dozen local micro beers.
Depending on what time of day or evening you’ve completed your round, Sticks also may have bingo, trivia, drink specials, or Taco Tuesday going on.
Sticks and Dahlgreen is also set up for your upcoming banquet, meeting, wedding reception, reunion, or tournament. Dahlgreen’s Tournament Director will be happy to personalize your event.
What Will the Next 50 Years Bring?
Head Pro Wann began working at Dahlgreen as a “cart kid.” Seven years later he’s grown into his Assistant Golf Professional role.
What is it about Dahlgreen that has kept Wann and hundreds of golfers coming back over the past 50 years? Could it be the service at the pro shop, the friendly smiles from the staff and fellow golfers, or is it Dahlgreen’s tremendous putting green surfaces?
When asked what he believes makes Dahlgreen a 50-year success story, Wann didn’t hesitate. “I think we make people feel welcome and that they belong. Once you play Dahlgreen once, I think you’ll find our golf course to be the best kept secret in the west metro.”