Colonel David Foster believed that Fort Wayne should have a city park within a 10 minute walk of every home, earning him the title "The Father of the Park System." In 1912 Samuel and David Foster donated 110 acres of land that would become Foster Park. An additional 120 acres were purchased in 1924 which was followed by another donation of 30 acres by Samuel Foster in 1926. In that same year the construction of the golf course began. In 1927 Fort Wayne issued bonds for the golf course and other park improvements for the very first time. With the generous donations given by the Foster Family and the hard work of citizens, Fort Wayne opened it's first public golf course in 1928. During the late 1930's the original 9 hole course was expanded to 18.
Throughout the years the golf course has continued to evolve. The clubhouse was built in 1955, but caught fire twice and has had significant flood damage in 1982 and 2003. The last course update was over 29 years ago as holes 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7 were changed. Probably the biggest challenge was restoring the golf course from the devastating flood of 2003. Bryan Kiester led this effort and implemented the course restoration plan.
In over 75 years Foster Golf Course has only had six golf professionals to date: John Sonnerberg, Bill Berg, Bill Miller, Rick Hemsoth, Chris Jones and Gary Whitacre. Bill Berg oversaw the lengthening of three holes and the construction of new greens in the 1960's. Bill Miller worked with Tommy Thompson to plan and implement the enlargement and redesign of greens on numbers 2 and 12. Rick brought a strong reputation as a teacher and an advocate of junior golfers. Rick Hemsoth retired in 2018. Chris Jones was our Manager of Golf Operations from 2019-2020. Gary Whitacre is the current PGA, Golf Manager.
There have been 5 green's superintendents: Harry Lambloy, Bob Miller, Dick Denney, Tommy Thompson and Bryan Kiester. Each superintendent has done an outstanding job of maintaining the course.