Sue McCall, ladies golf, golf, sports,

Madison Valley - Ladies of Golf

Sue McCall

Our second week revisiting the history of golf here in the Madison Valley introduces us to Sue McCall. Sue has a deep-seeded history with Madison Meadows Golf Course as her and husband Mel were involved in the very beginnings of Madison Meadows! 

Sue and Mel moved to Ennis in 1977 from California (yes folks they implanted here, but I can assure you their length of stay, involvement in community and creating a lot of history in our town are considered locals!) As avid fisherman, they had been coming to the area for a number of years on vacation and finally decided to buy the Elkhorn Trailer Park and store just outside town on Hwy 287 next to the current car wash. They upgraded and stocked the store with groceries and household items and renamed it McCall’s Elkhorn Store. 

Shortly thereafter talk began circulating about the design and construction of a Golf Course just outside Ennis. Sue and Mel were both involved from the get go with Bob Rice and Dan Leadbetter, owners of the land where the new golf course was proposed. It truly was a ranchland and pasture transformed by a number of community members, their dedication and hard work in creation and the opening of Madison Meadows in July of 1982. 

Sue grew up in Bakersfield, Calif., with three brothers, two older and one younger. She was naturally athletic and fiercely competitive (who wouldn’t be with three brothers!) She played a number of sports, but wouldn’t pick up a golf club until her 30’s. She married her high school sweetheart, Mel, in August of 1954. They had two daughters. When her husband started to play golf, Sue followed suit, saying “I couldn’t stand it, so I had to play too!” Thus starting their love life of golf together! 

When Madison Meadows opened in 1982, Sue was instrumental in the formation of Ladies League and its continued growth and success through the years. She recalls 15-20 women from the get go and was the 1st Ladies League President in 1983. She has won over 10 ladies club champion events in Ennis. Sue was a big part of the formation of The Themed Ladies Invitational Events held each summer where the ladies went all out with prizes, food, decorations and much more, attracting upward of 100 women to the event! Sue ran the Pro Shop one year when they had no pro in 1986 and Mel was the President of the Board of Directors. She recalls some outsiders wanting to try and turn their little community golf course into a “hoity toity” club but the locals wouldn’t have it! She also reflected on the early course in the eighties when the trees on #1 were no threat to your tee shot because they were so small!

Sue remained active at the Pro Shop and with women’s golf after they sold the Elkhorn Trailer Park and Store. Both Sue and Mel were active in clubhouse events and tournaments at the course. They were also very involved with the junior golf program, often being asked to help with clinics or volunteering on the putting green and driving range. Sue has played in over 10 Montana State Women’s Amateur Events throughout Montana and would love to play one last time at Emerald Canyon Golf Course in Parker, Ariz., where she won the Club Champion three years in a row from 2006-2008. 

Sue has had seven hole-in-ones! (Yes, I said seven!) her first being on #3 at Madison Meadows in her late 40’s or early 50’s and her last one just last year on #6 at Riverside Country Club in Bozeman at age 87! Sue had her claim to fame playing and riding in a cart with William Devane (famous actor) at a ProAm Event in Bozeman. 

At 87, Sue still loves to play golf (and does quite well, I must say!). She always was and still is quite a stickler for the rules in golf and in life! And in spite of her diagnosis of Macular Degeneration in her eyes, just a few adjustments, and maybe someone to help her watch and find her ball, I’m pretty sure she has an eighth hole-in-one left to come! 

Ladies Day Golf Event June 13th, 2024 Call the Pro Shop for details and don’t forget to follow us on Instagram: madisonmeadowsladiesgolf 



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The Madisonian

65 N. MT Hwy 287
Ennis, MT 59729

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