Warrior Golf Club History
Built on 179 acres, WGC is the group effort of 4 families (Staton Family, Lee Family, Houston Family and Johnson Family). The bulk of the acreage (approx. 120) for course construction was owned by Hattie Wright Courdrey. Hattie lived in Landis, N.C. during most of her colorful life. Hattie was brought up on the 170 acre Wright family farm, which was reduced in the mid 1940′s to 120 acres because an approx. 50 acre tract was donated to the Town of Landis for watershed development.
The beautiful 52 acre Lake Wright was so named and finished for use by the town as a primary water source around 1950. Hattie was married to Dr. Courdrey and moved to New York. She worked as a professional dancer and was very athletic in her youth. After her husband’s death, she moved back to Landis and dreamed of ways to develop the family farm she loved so much.
She developed an archery range on the property and years later in the 1970′s was approached by a developer to build houses and a golf course. The present housing development (Sleca-Wa) has matured gracefully. It was a success and 5 small developments with luxurious homes have joined Sleca-Wa. Hattie’s golf course developer moved dirt around on the sites for several holes while never intending to finish the construction. Soon, the developer stopped working and kept most of her life’s savings.
Always the optimist, Hattie never gave up. She leased a tract on the property in the early 1990′s for a lighted driving range for several years never forgetting the idea of building a golf course. During the summer of 1997, Warrior Golf Club’s ownership group approached Hattie and worked out the details of opening a golf course. On July 15th, 1999, Hattie realized her dream when Warrior Golf Club opened for business.
Mrs. Courdrey was honored on this day by the ownership and asked to hit the first tee shot. In front of over a thousand spectators, Hattie in her 80′s walked on the 10th tee and picked up a driver. She had not swung a club in years. It appeared that God picked the ball up and threw it down the fairway because she never took a practice swing and gracefully struck the tee shot right down the middle. Today, between the first and 10th tee, a memorial designed by her family stands in her honor.
With only 120 acres, the partners pulled together 5 other small tracts of land to reach the 179 acre plan for a championship layout. Pulling the necessary land together was a very tough task. Lake Wright had separated several tracts when it was built and the Town of Landis had a small land locked piece that had to be obtained through a series of town meetings and council votes. After the site was complete, Southeastern Golf was hired as the construction company and Stan Gentry was hired as architect. Southeastern had done remodeling work in the area for Kannapolis CC (now Irish Creek) and Stan Gentry designed several courses in the area.
Zachy Moore was hired as surveyor and Joe Sides was obtained to be the construction foreman of the clubhouse which was designed by the firm of Lee/Nichols/Helper. For months before meeting with Hattie Wright and after each piece of the puzzle was completed, the partners met for hours discussing details of the project. The ultimate goal was to build the best semi-private facility in the nation with a golf course friendly to every age, gender and handicap golfer.
A-1 bent grass was chosen for the greens with 419 Bermuda in the fairways, tees, and rough. Almost 7 miles of concrete cart paths were laid to ensure a smooth ride and a surface that would last for years to come. The course was approved for construction in phases with #4 & #5 being the first phase in November 1997. Many environmental meetings and permits went by until holes #13 through #17 being the last phase of the project started in early 1999. An early spring permitted the partners to reach the projected Grand Opening date of July 15, 1999 by having a tremendous grow-in season for these fairways.
Four years into the project, The Johnson Family decided to go back into the clothing business and they were bought out by the other three partnership families who remain today. Many other problems that were impossible to predict have been solved by this group.
During the course construction, rock was found in the 18th fairway and the clubhouse had to be raised 15 feet in order to see the 9th and 18th greens. The worst drought in 100 years caused the irrigation source to be changed from Lake Wright to as series of pounds below the dam. The twin towers went down on September 11, 2001 and then, in 2008 the start of the worst recession in US history causing millions to be lost when the real estate bubble burst. Even with all these catastrophes, when hundreds of courses have closed their doors, Warrior Golf Club has survived, maybe because it is watched over by an angel in heaven — Hattie Wright Courdrey.