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Nostalgic Family Fun: Lee’s Mini Golf Course

Posted on March 13th, 2015
Lees-Alpena-News

Generations of family fun at Lee’s Mini-golf!

Lee’s Miniature Golf Course in Alpena is known as the oldest, continuously run mini-golf course in the state of Michigan. It may look simple at first glance, but Lee’s proves to be a challenging course with a good old-fashioned design that puts your skills to the test.

On June 13, 1961, Lee’s opened its doors and charged 35 cents to play a game. The course was created by Alpena resident Lee Reide.  Mr. Reide studied mini golf courses all over Michigan, and even in other states such as Indiana and Wisconsin. He took pictures and notes on what he liked about each course. He thought and planned, planned and thought. Finally, one night he figured out the perfect mini golf course in his sleep! The final layout was made up of 90% originally designed holes. Lee Reide tried hard to find someone willing to finance his dream but was shut down repeatedly. After much perseverance, he finally found a bank in Bay City willing to secure a loan.

Mr. Reide worked with his friend, decorated WWII soldier Clem Van Wagnor, and together they built the course. Clem did all of the physical construction, and Lee did all of the designing.  Mr. Reide owned Lee’s Miniature Golf for over 20 years until he passed away unexpectedly in the early 1980’s. Alpena resident Mike Polluck purchased the golf course from Mrs. Reide in about 1985. Mrs. Reide has said that Lee’s Miniature Golf was once featured in a magazine as one of the most challenging mini golf courses in the nation. 

Mike owned Lee’s Mini Golf for over 28 years and kept it as original as possible. Putting hole #17 was changed a few years back, but only after Mike found the original blueprints that Lee Reide had designed for the hole. The arcade is also updated with newer games, but the original simplicity and concept of the business hold the same.

Lee’s Mini Golf Course in Alpena

Several years ago, Mike turned over this historical roadside attraction to a new owner, Dr. David Dargis. With Greg Konwinski on board as the property and business manager, Lee Reide’s legendary miniature golf course lives on. 

We promise you won’t find a more unique and loved mini-golf course. Lee’s Miniature Golf is located on State Street, right next to Starlite Beach, and is across the street from Greg’s popular Hungry Hippie food stand. For more information, call (989) 354-0679