One of the earlier mentions of a golf course being built in the City of Albany came from Mayor John Boyd Thatcher’s annual Mayor’s Message in 1929. He was quoted as saying:
“As part of the park program and in connection with the creational facility of the city of Albany, the development of municipal golf links is an important consideration. The popularity of this game, together with the growing interest on the part of the public generally in this form of exercise make it imperative that such a course be established”.
Shortly after Mayor Thatcher made that statement, a committee was created to analyze the possibility of building a municipal golf course. Alfred Sporborg was chosen to serve as chairman of the committee alongside fellow committee members Jacob Herzog, John H. McElroy, George I. Lawyer, and Frederick Futterer.
In 1930, the City of Albany purchased 265 acres of farmland from the Walley Family in the Town of Bethlehem for less than $150,000 and hired Devereux Emmet to design the course. Later that year a temporary 9-hole course was opened and offered free golf to the public. The temporary course saw over 1,500 players that opening summer.
While play continued on the temporary course, construction began on the permanent municipal course in 1931. On May 28th, 1932, Mayor Thatcher officially dedicated the Albany Municipal Golf Course. The golf course was reported to cost $70,402.40.
In 1949, the course dumped its first two original holes (rerouting the first) and squeezed another par three into the back nine. The layout was shifted to move all of the hilly holes to the back nine, thus creating a legend and making the course a par 70 instead of its original par 72.
During the early 1960’s, Albany Municipal built a junior golf program that was the envy of the area, and, along the way, it became the starting point for some of the area’s best amateur golfers.
The course was a favorite for local golfers for decades when, in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, the course was renovated. On July 13, 1991, Mayor Thomas Whalen introduced the new renovated course and renamed the Albany Municipal Golf Course the New Course at Albany. A few years later several more changes were made to the overall golf course and after a public naming contest, the New Course at Albany was officially renamed the Capital Hills at Albany Golf Course by Mayor Gerald Jennings.
To this day the Capital Hills at Albany continues to offer players a changeling course with breath taking views and a relaxing atmosphere and is the premier golf course in the Capital Region.