The Fourth of July in Sacandaga Park – golf links laid out

In April of 1900 the reference below tells of preparations for the 4th of July in Sacandaga park. Although it was four months before the holiday would be celebrated; careful planning went into every season year round to insure visitors would have an enjoyable day. The park was growing rapidly and the railroad never spared expense when it came to additional cottages, concessions, and amusements. Preparations for that year follow:

The officials of the F J & G Railroad company have arranged to hold a gala day at Sacandaga Park and will provide amusements of a most enjoyable nature for all who will spend the day at the delightful resort.

One of the best known aeronauts of the state has been engaged to give a balloon ascension and the contract has been closed with a representative of the Payn’s Fireworks Company of New York to give a grand display in that line. The latter will be a special feature of the day.

A list of sports of a varied nature will also be provided and there will be splendid music during the day, both by bands for concerts in the park and by orchestras in the dance pavilion.

The program as prepared by the railroad company will give pleasure to all those who visit the park and together with the Texas burros which will give visitors rides to high rock; the deer in Deer Park and the famous bear everyone should be able to have a good time.

The year 1899 appears to be when a major push for the visiting the park started by the railroad:
President J Ledlie Hees of the FJ and G railroad has just issued a very attractive twenty page pamphlet with filled with beautiful illustrations of the attractions of this unique summer resort. Whatever Mr. Hees attempts is sure to be well done and no one can glance through it’s pages without a desire to visit the park. The Adirondack inn which is it’s principle hotel will be opened on June 15th.

This hotel will be the charge of C.J. Hamlin who is one of the best known hotel men in the state. He is the proprietor of the Winney house of Northville and for fifteen years was connected with the old Delavan Hotel in Albany. They have every prospect of having an unusually successful season.
Golf at the Park

In 1899 P.S. Honeyman of Lennox Mass arrived after being contracted as the designer for golf links in Sacandaga park. This reference gives a description of this task:

A noted Golf Expert has completed his work at Sacandaga Park this morning May 11th.
For the past two days Honeyman, a noted golf expert ,has been at Sacandaga Park laying out the golf links in that place. The grounds collected were the athletic field and the large lot south of Gifford’s Corners.
The starting point will be at the northwest corner of the athletic grounds , with the with the finishing point in close proximity. The distance covered by players is nearly a mile.

The greens will be from 165 to 250 yards in length and will cross and recross the ravine which separates the two lots and which forms a most desirable hazard.

There will also be 4 foot bridges over the ravine for the convenience of golfers.
Mr. Honeyman has laid out the grounds for nearly all the prominent golf clubs in the country, and claims the park grounds as natural for a course as any he has ever seen and the links will be desirable as those to be found anywhere.

Honeyman has given golf lessons for 15 years before coming to this country from England 6 years ago. He has taught many a champion in this country.

Columnists’ Note: References for articles in 1899 foretold of the growth the park was gaining. At summer’s end a report from the railroad released information regarding ticket sales and safety issues.
In 1897 the total amount of tickets sold was 17,299 The New York Central contributing 537. And in 1898 there were 25,000 tickets sold.

In 1899 the total number of ticket sales: 43,510 of which 32,915 were sold at local stations and 10,595 at points along the New York Central. Total number of passengers including free business approximated at over 50,000. In the report the claim is made that there was not an accident to a single passenger. But that wasn’t the parks biggest season.

by Lorraine . Decker