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History

Formerly Minebrook Golf Club, now Rock Ridge Golf Course clubhouse in Hackettstown
Musconetcong Country Club 1962 Hackettstown Gazette newspaper article
Musconetcong Country Club now Rock Ridge Golf Course in Hackettstown clubhouse postcard
Ladies Golf League in 1963 Hidden Hills Golf Club now Rock Ridge Golf Course in Hackettstown
Musconetcong Country Club now Rock Ridge Golf Course in Hackettstown postcard

Built in 1919, Rock Ridge Golf Course (previously known as Minebrook Golf Club, Hidden Hills Golf Club & The Musconetcong Country Club) is New Jersey’s third oldest golf course.

The Musconetcong Country Club was originally a nine-hole course designed by renowned golf architect Herbert Strong between 1919 and 1921. Herbert was a Golf Pro and one of the founders of the PGA. He later focused on golf architecture up and down the East Coast and into Canada.

Centenary University’s first President, Dr. Robert Trevorrow was elected the first President of Musconetcong Country Club in 1920.

The course opened for play on Memorial Day 1921.

Herbert Strong and other golfers on opening day of Musconetcong Country Club in 1921 Hackettstown
Herbert Strong playing gold

The Musconetcong CC was purchased by John and Marlene Rocco in 1958.

John made a number of changes to the nine-hole course, including:

 

  • Changing the name from The Musconetcong Country Club to Hidden Hills Golf Club

  • Turning the course into a public golf course, instead of a private club

John Rocco purchases and expands golf course in Hackettstown, now Rock Ridge Golf Course
1958 newspaper article about Rock Ridge Golf Course in Hackettstown
Hidden Hills Golf Club now Rock Ridge Golf Course course and management newspaper clipping
Formerly Minebrook Golf Club, now Rock Ridge Golf Course entrance sign in Hackettstown
The Nook in Hackettstown entry ticket for concerts

John was the architect for the back-nine holes, which is arguably the most challenging, yet picturesque on this particular course.

The Rocco's heavily invested in the property and converted the home of the original owner of the course into an actual clubhouse. They added:

  • A banquet kitchen

  • Banquet hall

  • Pub room and bar

  • Pro shop

  • Full locker room

John and Marlene had four kids who grew up on and eventually worked Hidden Hills Golf Course: Johnny, Mimi, Jim and Frank.

 

Johnny was the Superintendent, Mimi managed the Pro Shop & designed posters/logos, Jim ran golf and was the Golf Pro on-site while Frank was the Manager.

The Rocco's eventually opened up The Nook in the 70's - a "two rooms, two bands, one club" nightclub. Bands from all over the world played at The Nook - from Twisted Sister, The Nerds and Meatloaf. 

In the early 90's, John and Marlene sold Hidden Hills Golf Course & The Nook but continued to manage it for a number of years before retiring. Upon it's purchase, the course was renamed Minebrook Golf Club.

Over the last 20 years, Minebrook passed through the hands of many different management companies. Arnold Palmer and CBIIG were the latest in a long line. In the 2020 COVID pandemic, the clubhouse, restaurant and banquet and hall shut down permanently. For a number of years Jim Rocco had been in touch with ownership of Minebrook, with hopes of purchasing the golf course back. 

In February of 2023, the Rocco brothers finally receive a phone call. After 28 years of waiting, they are able to purchase the family golf course back with the goal of passing it down to the next generation of eight Rocco kids. 

The first thing we did was rename the course for a fourth (and hopefully final) time: Rock Ridge Golf Course. We have ambitious goals in mind but one first and foremost: restore this golf course & clubhouse to it's former glory and give our players a place to golf with a country club feel at the accessibility and cost of a public course.

In 2023 we have so far:

  • Rebuilt stairs & bridges around the property

  • Sent soil samples to Rutgers to learn more about our grass & how to take care of it

  • Renovated the banquet hall (The Rock Room) and The Nook (Bar & Grill)

  • Reopened The Nook & Rock Room (with a full menu, two full bars & live entertainment every Friday & Saturday!)

  • Broke ground on adding state-of-the-art Trackman iO Golf Simulators: The Bunker is opening soon!

In 2024 & Beyond:

  • Continued work to revitalize the course with a growing program designed to enhance greens, tees & fairways

  • Outdoor patio with fire pits & live music

  • Drainage & irrigation

  • Additional renovations to the Rock Ridge Clubhouse, the Rock Room & The Nook

  • Host golf outings, concerts and special events for our members and community to enjoy

  • Driving Range

We invite you to visit us in Hackettstown. Whether you're playing golf on our picturesque 18-hole course, visiting The Nook for a bite to eat, perfecting your swing at The Bunker or seeing some live music in the Rock Room on a Saturday night-- we're happy to have you. Thank you for supporting us and we hope you have a great experience.

Sincerely, 
The Rocco Family

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Rock Ridge Golf Course Logo Full
Rock Ridge Golf Course Logo Full
Rock Ridge Golf Course Logo Full
Rock Ridge Golf Course Logo Full
Rock Ridge Golf Course Logo Full
Rock Ridge Golf Course Logo Full
Rock Ridge Golf Course Logo Full
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