English Insurance Group is headquartered in the historic North Creek Clubhouse, which originally served as the pro shop and lounge for the Greenacres Golf Course. Golfing in the area became popular when the Wayne course opened in Bothell, and the Greenacres Golf Course and Clubhouse opened in the North Creek Valley in 1931.
But only after three short years of operating, the Northern Life Insurance company sold the Greenacres Golf Course and Clubhouse to Dominic Vitulli, who planned to plow up the golf course and begin a farming operation. The purchase was completed in the fall of 1934. However, it was too late in the year to begin plowing, so Vitulli opted to wait until the following spring. Jack Rice, who handled the sale for Northern Life, suggested to Vitulli that he operate the course until he could begin plowing in the spring of 1935 and thereby derive some revenue from the idle ground.
At the time, Vitulli knew nothing about the game of golf. He could scarcely believe that people would pay money just for the right to walk around on grass. Never one to miss an opportunity, he reopened the course.
One of the golfers on opening day asked him the location of the first tee. Vitulli, not knowing golf parlance, asked the golfer to explain.
The golfer asked, ”Where do I start?”
Vitulli replied, "Start anywhere you want. You see we have plenty of room on these 100 acres.”
When Vitulli was later asked if the golf course had any pros around, he responded, “Not today, but we are getting some in tomorrow.”
As you might guess, Vitulli's golf club management career was brief, but his very successful farming effort continued to turn up lost golf balls for several decades after these humorous beginnings.
In 2016, Kristie English, owner of English Insurance Group, purchased and renovated the North Creek Clubhouse to serve as the new headquarters for the agency. The building rests in a 5-acre wildlife preserve complete with an aviary pond, hosting various ducks, geese, great blue herons, otters, and beavers. The parking lot also serves as the trailhead for the popular North Creek walking trails, which trace along the waterways where sockeye and coho salmon seasonally run. The facilities are designed to host up to 100 people and have been the setting for many summer client appreciation events and weddings.
A newspaper ad for Greenacres Golf Course's Opening Day on
Saturday June 13, 1931
Vitulli's commemorative plaque at McMenamins Anderson School.
The theme for Boomerang (1975-1980) was filmed at Vitulli's (then vacant) barn.
Come visit us at the Clubhouse. We'd love to meet you!
Call us at (833) BIG-TREE / (425) 673-7948, or use our online form to request a quote.