The next time you tee up at the Prince George Golf and Curling Club, take a moment to thank Harold Pretty. Without him the club likely would not exist.
Pretty moved his family from Port Alberni to Prince George in 1957 so he could become golf professional and course manager of the P.G. Golf Club. At the time it was a nine-hole layout with sand greens, no clubhouse, no water and only 35 members. Volunteers comprised what little workforce there was.
In 1958, the membership gave Pretty a budget of $200 (not including seed) and permission to build three greens. Instead, he built nine greens. Irrigation was added later, a service which was integral to the adjacent curling club.
Pretty also started the first junior golf program in Prince George and taught the game through lessons and a column in The Prince George Citizen called Golf Notes and Tips.
In 1960, Pretty and Matt Briggs started work on making the course a full 18 holes. In addition to the new holes, a new clubhouse was in place by 1966, and membership grew to nearly 650. A land swap involving the Pine Centre Mall, spearheaded by Pretty, brought about changes to three holes.
Pretty stepped down as the PGGCC pro in 1974 and was given a lifetime membership at the course, where he played until his death.
Pretty did it all for the Prince George Golf and Curling Club, and the people of Prince George owe him a debt of gratitude.