Donald Ross designed the course, which opened in 1922 as a nine-hole layout. Ross finished another nine holes in 1927.
A parkland layout over 160 acres, framed by the Holyoke Range in western Massachusetts, about 90 miles west of Boston. The Orchards will be the host site for the 2002 NCAA Women's Division III Championship that will be played from May 14-18. The Massachusetts State Amateur was played at The Orchards in 2001.
Michelle McGann won the 1987 U.S. Girls' Junior Championship in the only USGA championship previously held at The Orchards.
'This is a unique opportunity,' says Laurie Priest, director of athletics at Mount Holyoke College, a leading private liberal arts college of more than 2000 women founded in 1837. 'We have one of the top golf courses and one of the best colleges for women. We are excited about everything coming together for this major sporting event.'
'We are honored to have been chosen for such a prestigious event,' says Glenn Zito, director of golf for Arnold Palmer Golf Management, which oversees The Orchards. 'We are starting some course improvements this summer and we are excited to work with our local community to showcase golf in western Massachusetts.'
The Women's Open has been held in Massachusetts three times previously. It was played at Salem Country Club in Peabody in 1954 and 1984 and at Worcester Country Club in 1960.
Prior to 2004, the U.S. Women's Open will be conducted from July 4-7, 2002, at Prairie Dunes Golf Club in Hutchinson, Kan., and from July 3-6, 2003, at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in North Plains, Ore.
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