DREAMS DO COME TRUE: 19TH TEE CHANGES HANDS

Golf News, Flagstick Golf Magazine, Issue May 2013 (Click here to read the magazine)

After John Fagan’s first shift in the pro shop at the 19th Tee Driving Range on Carling Avenue many years ago, he had indicated to owner D’Arcy Boucher that some day he would like to own the business.

Well, flash forward to St. Patrick’s Day, 2013. On that day, John and D’Arcy shook hands on a deal that would see the 19th Tee change hands after 36 years of operation by D’Arcy Boucher and his family.

D’Arcy isn’t planning to take on another job, but health permitting he would like to play a little more golf than he has in the past couple of years. “I’m glad John got it,” said Mr. Boucher referring to the 19th Tee. “I wanted someone that I knew well to purchase the 19th Tee. John and I both know the same people. I know the parents and John knows their children.”

The new owner, John Fagan, has a few more years left until retirement from Canada Post and until then he has confidence in the current staff at the 19th Tee to look after his interests. James Paterson will manage the operation for him and Ottawa PGA professionals Joe Dubinski and Gregg Foley will look after the golf lessons. John is no stranger to the Ottawa sports community. His dad worked for Howard Darwin out of the jewelry shop on Willington Street and John worked for the Ottawa 67’s and the Ottawa Lynx. He is also a fair golfer having won the club championship at the Pakenham Golf & Country Club.

John isn’t planning any major changes at the 19th Tee. As he says, “In the words of D’Arcy’s late brother Carroll, if isn’t broke, why change things? It’s all about family values at the 19th Tee. We love seeing parents who have hit balls, taken lessons and played golf on the mini-putt course through the years bringing their children in.”

The 19th Tee is a golf institution in the west end of the City of Ottawa. it was originally known as the Westlake Golf Centre and run by Lyn Stewart and Harry Mulligan. In 1959 the NCC purchased the land and leased the property to Earl Stimpson. Mr. Stimpson sold the operation to D’Arcy Boucher, Carroll Boucher and Ottawa sportswriter Eddie McCabe in 1976.

In D’Arcy Boucher’s profile story in the June, 2011 issue of Flagstick Golf Magazine we talked about the 19th Tee. “If only the driving mats and grass areas could talk. What a story they could tell about the thousands of golfers who have dropped in to talk, hit balls and take lessons from the on-site CPGA (now PGA of Canada) professionals.”

It looks like the 19th Tee is in good hands under its new ownership and its traditions will continue for many years to come.

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