Aspen Lakes is a privately owned, public golf course. As we are very proud of our course, facilities and the experience we provide our customers, we encourage Golf Digest panelists to visit!
The concept for Aspen Lakes Golf Course began in 1987, when the Cyrus family acquired a 1,084 acre parcel adjacent to their family farm. The remainder of the 1980s and first part of the 1990’s was devoted to planning, permitting and securing financing to move forward with the project. The original partners were Keith Cyrus and his two sons, Matt and Brian. Sister Pam joined later when Brian left the business to pursue other interests.
The first nine holes were constructed in 1996 under the watchful eye of World Class golf course architect William Overdorf. Mr. Overdorf is a true artist. He worked with the existing site to sculpt this incredible golf course into the existing landscape. As important natural features were identified during construction, the plans were modified to incorporate them into the course rather than destroy the feature. The second nine was similarly afforded this attention to detail and opened in 2000.
The Cyrus family was very hands on during the construction of Aspen Lakes. While Matt directed staking and layout of the features, Pam, operated the large equipment moving soil and Keith did much of the clearing and ditching. Matt then did much of the finish work and the whole family joined in to seed the fairways. Sand for construction of the greens and tees was hauled from the family farm.
The red sand for the bunkers also originated on the Cyrus property. When it came time to install the bunkers, it was discovered that the “normal” sand that the other courses use is hauled in from other states and very expensive. In looking at alternatives, it was decided that it would be less costly and more environmentally friendly to use local materials already in the area. Red cinders that occur naturally on the Cyrus property were crushed down to make sand. The deep red sand creates a visual delight as it contrast with the green grass, blue skies and white, snow covered, mountains that are the Aspen Lakes signature.
Since the course opened, it has generated world-wide acclaim. It has received recognition from Golf Digest as the number eight Best New Affordable Course in the United States. Brainstorm Magazine recently ranked Aspen Lakes the number two course in the Northwest for Best Overall Experience and we have been featured in both the Japanese and Korean versions of Golf Digest. With the Redmond airport just 20 minutes away, Aspen Lakes is always a popular destination for out of state golfers when visiting Central Oregon.
Having homesteaded in the community, the Cyrus family has always been very sensitive to the environment. Aspen Lakes was the first course in Oregon to be enrolled in the Audubon Signature Sanctuary Program. We have an extensive recycling program and use local food products when possible. Even the beef served in the restaurant often wears the family’s 33 brand. The extensive fire reduction measures taken at Aspen Lakes has allowed it to be recognized as a Fire Wise Community.
We are currently working to expand the facility by adding lodging and additional resort amenities. When complete, the resort will encompass roughly 2,000 acres and include world class outdoor recreation opportunities as well as golf, spa, and many other amenities near the small town community of Sisters, Oregon.