Located at 35501 Eddy Road in Willoughby, Manakiki Country Club opened on June 29, 1929. Manakiki Country Club was a private golf club created by the Willowick Country Club to replace their former links. While their previous course was opened to the public, the new Manakiki Country Club and golf course remained private and excluded African Americans. The growing popularity of golf throughout the first half of the twentieth century encouraged many African Americans to establish their own clubs. However, golf clubs were particularly difficult to create for African American players due to the amount of space needed to construct a course, the financial capital needed to establish and maintain courses, and difficulties in organizing clubs. While a number of black country clubs and resorts failed during the Great Depression in the 1930s, black athletes often sought out tournaments on public courses to compete in. In 1953, the Carlings Open was held at Manankiki Golf Course. A number of black golfers competed and even earned qualifying spots in the tournament despite never having played on the course before.
In 1944, the owners of the property offered to sell the course to the city of Cleveland. After the city turned down the offer, they sold the property to the Cleveland Metroparks on the condition that it remain a golf course. In 1956, a court decision ruled that both the Manakiki and Sleepy Hollow Country Club in Brecksville must desegregate. Despite the club’s position on public property and the court order for desegregation, the Cleveland Metroparks continued to lease the property to the Manakiki Country Club and allowed the course to remain private until 1961. After the country club failed to renew its lease, the course finally became public. Today, the course is still owned and operated by the Cleveland Metroparks and is available for public play.
- “‘Closed’ Golf Links must Open to Public.” Call & Post (1934-1962), August 11, 1956.
- Dietrich, John. “Willowick Picks Manakiki as Name for New Course.” Plain Dealer. June 5, 1929.
- Foster, Mark S. “In the Face of ‘Jim Crow’: Prosperous Blacks and Vacations, Travel and Outdoor Leisure, 1890-1945.” Journal of Negro History 84, no. 2 (1999): 130–49.
- “Golf Club Bias Fight Now Headed for Court.” Call & Post. February 11, 1956.
- “Manakiki Golf Course.” Ohio Golf Courses | Cleveland Metroparks. Accessed October 22, 2021. www.clevelandmetroparks.com/golf/courses/manakiki-golf-course.
- “NAACP Blocks Jim-Crow Contracts for Golf Courses.” Call & Post. January 14, 1956.
- Price, Charles. “Negro Golfers Qualify in Carlings Open: Roach of 6th City Leads Amateur Field.” Call & Post. June 27, 1953.
- “Seven Hills and Manakiki Ready: New Course Set to Open Saturday; Willowick to Be Public.” Plain Dealer. June 23, 1929.