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81 Years Ago: Downtown Prepared for a Mini Golf Invasion

By Eric Richardson
Published: Tuesday, July 19, 2011, at 07:34AM
Miniature Golf at the Lankershim Hotel LA Public Library

Players navigate the miniature golf course in the basement of the Hotel Lankershim at 7th and Broadway

On July 19, 1930, Consolidated Hotels Inc. released a report claiming that Downtown was set for an invasion — of miniature golf.

The activity had taken off nationally during the 1920s, but it wasn't until 1930 that the first course in the central city opened. It was located in the basement of the Hotel Lankershim at 7th and Broadway, and an L.A. Times story that wrote about the report said that it was played by 250 people each day.

There was more to come, said the Consolidated report.

Establishment of this first downtown course is expected to be followed by the opening of many others, according to the hotel chain executives, who pointed out that this is a logical trend for the movement to take. Similar courses are said to be planned for several downtown hotels. An outdoor miniature golf course now is under construction at Figueroa and Tenth streets, and realty men report demand for sites even nearer to the heart of the business section.

The Lankershim's mini golf wasn't the only subterranean entertainment Downtown: In 1940 a bowling alley opened in the basement of the Broadway-Spring Arcade.

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