Colgate University Celebrates Renovated Seven Oaks Golf Course and Applegate Family Clubhouse

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Seven Oaks Clubhouse
By Mary Donofrio June 8, 2023

Members of the Colgate community gathered on Saturday, May 27 to celebrate recent renovations to the Seven Oaks golf course and dedicate the new Applegate Family Clubhouse. 

Consistently hailed as one of the best collegiate golf courses in the country, Seven Oaks was in need of major renovations and repairs, both to the course — designed by famed golf course architect Robert Trent Jones — and the clubhouse. Spearheaded by a lead gift from Brion ’76 and Sabrina Applegate, and major contributions from Joe ’85 and Christine ’84 McGrath P’15’20, Thomas McInerney ’78, P’12, and Alan ’63 and Jean Heuer P’91’99, more than $8.3 million was raised for the fully donor-funded project.

Renovations began in August 2021 and were completed in the summer of 2022, thanks in part to the efforts of J.S. Hope ’97, Colgate’s senior vice president for finance and administration and chief investment officer, who helped to facilitate the clubhouse construction and course renovations.

In addition to creating a new short-game facility, course improvements include an elevated first green to provide a better playing surface and more pin placement; a rebuilt second green, renovated bunkers, new tees for various holes, new chipping and putting areas, and landscaping upgrades with new trees.

Renovations to the clubhouse include new locker rooms, a new pro shop and lobby, new second-floor gathering space, an enlarged bar area, increased outdoor seating, and a relocated cart barn, equipped with infrastructure for electric carts. 

The donor funded improvements, part of the Campaign for the Third Century, will allow Colgate to continue to pursue its Third-Century goals of enriching the student experience and stewarding the campus environs. 

“Seven Oaks is a place that provides a real sense of community,” said Joe McGrath, donor on the project and University trustee. “It brings together the village, faculty, staff, alumni, and students. The investments that we've made to the course and the clubhouse will allow these facilities to be enjoyed by the community for the next 50 to 100 years.”

Originally designed in 1934, Seven Oaks is ranked among New York State's best public golfing venues.