Mr. Lando purchased the property that is now known as Delta Golf Course from the family of Honest John Oliver, Premier of British Columbia between 1921 and 1927. When Mr. Lando took over the property in 1971 a jungle of blackberry bushes mostly hid it. What he didn’t know was that underneath the blackberries was a forest of cedar stumps as the Delta property was once a cedar swamp! In order to properly prepare the course for construction, stump burning continued for several winters.
Once the stumps were dealt with, the course was built in a record 64 days, and it’s fairways were seeded in 2 hours using a crop dusting airplane. The course opened in 1975 on 120 acres – 18 holes, par 69. By 1984 the course had improved considerably and had built a faithful clientele. Wide-open fairways and immense approachable greens characterized this course. The beautifully constructed barn on the Delta property (the inside of the hayloft looks like a Gothic cathedral) was turned into a clubhouse. The word GOLF spelled in black duroid shingles on the brown roof has become a landmark in the area. The barn has been declared a heritage site, and coincidentally is also the home of barn owls, an endangered species!
In the summer of 1984 the Department of Highways expropriated a large area of the Delta Golf Course land to build the Highway 91 approach to the Alex Fraser Bridge. Less energetic septuagenarians might have thrown in the towel, but not Mr. Lando. Although he had to rebuild almost the entire course, by 1985, the course was open again and ready for play. The new course had tighter fairways, bunkered greens and ample water, making it a shot maker’s course rather than a “hitter’s haven” as the earlier course had been. The Clubhouse Barn was now stranded on the south side of the freeway and a new clubhouse had to be developed from two school portables. However, Delta’s problems were far from over. The new course layout required a piece of land to the east that was leased from a neighboring farmer. The property was resold and the new neighbor less accommodating. In 1993 the lease expired and a new agreement could not be reached with the new owner.
Again, the course had to be rebuilt in order to squeeze the two holes that had been on the leased land onto the existing Delta Golf Course lands. Though the entire ambiance of the course is different, one characteristic can still be found – the presence of the remnants of cedar stumps with birch trees growing out of them. This horticultural curiosity has delighted many Delta Golf Course visitors. A tall half-burnt cedar stump adjacent to the 16th fairway remains as a reminder to golfers of how a cedar swamp became a golf course. Delta Golf Course is situated on 62 acres.