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Experiencing golf history

Steve Alger of Hershey putts on the third green during the Foxburg Hickory Championship Friday at Foxburg Country Club. Shane Potter/Butler Eagle
14th annual Foxburg Hickory Championship sends golfers back in time

FOXBURG — Established in 1887, Foxburg Country Club is considered the oldest golf course in the United States.

The facility is doing more than showcasing history. The 14th annual Foxburg Hickory Championship — taking place at the course this weekend — gives golfers a chance to experience history.

Hickory golf events are played with hickory sticks (clubs) that date back to the era of the 1920’s. Tourney participants also hit golf balls commensurate with those times and wear knickers and other clothing from that era while they play.

“If people are willing to travel, and many of these gentlemen are, there are hickory golf events taking placed somewhere in the country almost every weekend,” said Karen Johnson, who is helping her husband, Tom, run the event this weekend.

“We serve as a trading post for equipment as well. Golfers bring excess hickory clubs with them. Golfers buy, sell or trade them in addition to playing.”

The Foxburg Hickory Championship this weekend features a 40-golfer field from 16 states — Washington, Oregon, Iowa, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio, Virginia, New Jersey, Florida, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Texas and Arizona. This year’s field is the largest in tournament history.

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