Oakbourne Country Club is situated a mere 10-minute drive from downtown Lafayette, on the northern periphery of the Lafayette Regional Airport. It was here in 1955 that a small group of local businessmen established the club, having just purchased 150 acres of Jack Nickerson’s Oakbourne Plantation.
It was swamp land that had to be drained first, but once this was done, architect Dick Wilson and his construction supervisor Bob Simmons laid out eighteen holes and the club was on its way. Ken Dye and Joe Finger later remodelled the layout in the mid-1980s.
Notable holes include the 459-yard 5th, with water protecting the left side of the green; the 162-yard 9th, where a severely back to font sloping green sits behind water; and the 450-yard 18th, which doglegs sharply right to a sand-protected raised green.
Eleven editions of the Cajun Classic Open Invitational were held here from 1958 to 1968, when it was the last regular tournament of the season played on the PGA Tour. John Barnum triumphed in 1962, becoming the only professional golfer so far to win his first event on the main circuit as a senior.
Tom Doak made a point of playing Oakbourne Contry Club in 2016 and awarded the course a rating of four out of ten. He commented as follows in his Christmas 2017 Confidential Guide update:
“The premier club in Lafayette has a bit of a national reputation because it hosted the PGA Tour’s Cajun Classic in the 1960’s, which was won by native sons Lionel Hebert and his brother Jay, in different years. Lots of doglegs separated by large oaks make it a difficult test from tee to green; there is no water until the par-3 9th but then there are four more water holes on the incoming nine.”
The course was built in 1955 and designed by Dick Wilson. It has a very few fairway bunkers in play off the tee on holes 1, 8 and 10. My favorite part of the course are the 3 short holes in a row: Hoe 10 - short Par 4 with a crazy spine running the length of the green, following short Par 5 with a very protected green with bunkers and water, then on of the most difficult holes on the course is short 12th hole. The greens are the star of the show and course has recently been doing some tree removal that has been improving turf quality. It is the best course in Lafayette and 1 of the 5 best in the state.