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Strategy for Attending a PGA Tournament?

Discussion in 'TUG Lounge' started by Talent312, Jan 15, 2019.

  1. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    The WM-Phoenix Open is at the end of this month. As it happens, I'll be in Phoenix with time to kill on Saturday, so I'm thinking about going to the tournament. Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson, Phil Mickelson, but no Tiger Woods.

    I've never been to one before. I read that there are essentially two ways to watch a golf tournament: (1) Follow a set of golfers from hole-to-hole, or (2) pick a spot and watch the parade go by.

    Then there's the controversial 16th hole, which I read some purists avoid altogether (Tiger Woods made a hole-in-one there in 1997)...

    [​IMG]

    .
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019
  2. tashamen

    tashamen TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I haven't been to that one, but usually go to the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Orlando in March (where I did see Tiger play for the first time last year.) I always go early, as in when the gates open, and park myself either on the 1st tee or the 10th and watch players tee off. Then have lunch and come back to watch the rest tee off. I like to go on Thursdays and Fridays when the whole field is still in it.

    Personally I'm too old for the 16th at Phoenix! :eek:
     
    Snazzylass and mentalbreak like this.
  3. SmithOp

    SmithOp TUG Member

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    I’ve been to Senior PGA events and preferred to move around with groups. The way courses are laid out you can follow a group for several holes then loop back and catch another group. I play golf every week so I need to move around and I like seeing a variety of shots.

    Sitting on my butt at 16 with a bunch of yelling screaming drunks does not sound like fun to me.

    PS: Saw Gary McChord play a few times, surprised how tall his is and his mustache is impressive.

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
     
  4. Karen G

    Karen G Moderator

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    Do go to the one in Phoenix while you're there. I'd love to see Phil Mickelson play. My husband and I were marshalls for several years at the Las Vegas TPC tournament which was once called the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospital for Children tournament. Now it's just the Shriners Hospital for Children tournament. We loved our spot on the 16th green to watch all the golfers come through.

    A few months ago we parked ourselves on that same hole and saw Bryson Dechambeau win. That was especially fun because his caddy's mother is a friend of mine from high school.
     
  5. Lydlady

    Lydlady TUG Member

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    We went to the one you're referring to last year. We had a blast. We went multiple days but avoided the weekend. On one day we followed one of the "celebrities" (Aaron Rodgers) and on another day we found a good place to park ourselves for the day. Unless you have a favorite player to follow around, I would suggest just finding a hole and watching all the players go through. I think we sat at hole #2 or #3 which also put us close to hole #9 (?). Sorry, maybe DH will remember exactly.

    Be prepared for lots of walking if you follow a player. We are in good enough shape but were pretty worn out after following Aaron Rodgers around.

    We also avoided the 16th hole.
     
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  6. am1

    am1 TUG Member

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    I went to the us open open around 2008/9 when it was at bethpage black. Sunday was rained out so Monday tickets were cheaper and less crowds. I followed mike weir before he dropped off. I used bethpage to run on a few times (what golf courses should be for). I moved around a lot. The event was very corporate.

    Unless my kids want to eventually go to one I probably would not go again.

    I have. Even a member of a golf club for 6 years but have never played there. Only played a few times many years ago.
     
  7. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I went to one when I was in high school (I was dating a golfer). I don't know which tournament it was, it was held at a country club in Glendale, CA. We picked one spot and stayed there. I did get to see "Arnie's Army" which was a thrill.
     
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  8. Snazzylass

    Snazzylass Guest

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    Well, Saturday might be my last choice of days but if that's your only time, prepare for crazy, insane drunk crowds - unlike no other PGA event. Crowded, crowded, insanely crowded and wasted on both Friday and Saturday are the reports.
    I've volunteered several times and worked concession stands, earning money for women's collegiate scholarships. My sorority sisters report that Wednesday, the ProAm, is indeed the most fun. It's a well run tournament which raises millions for charitable organizations. Oh, sunscreen, cover your head and lots of water. Enjoy!
     
  9. mjm1

    mjm1 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I have attended several tournaments over the years. As a golfer, I like to get a sense of the entire course as I may never have a chance to play it. In this case one can play it. If you are up to it, I would walk the course not following any specific group. Then figure out which hole and spot on the hole you would enjoy and go back to that spot for the rest of your time there. Once the final group comes through you can follow them or you can go anywhere on the course with remaining play. Personally I don't think I would spend much time on the 16th. But that's personal preference. Enjoy!

    Best regards.

    Mike
     
  10. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    We normally choose a couple of players/groups to follow and then stay put on hole 18 towards the end of the day and tournament.
     
  11. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Sounds like a plan...
    Following a group with an early Saturday tee-time may mean a smaller crowd for them... then I could hover somewhere toward the end of the course.

    BTW, they're charging $60 for GA... which may help cut down on the rabble.
    .
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019
  12. rapmarks

    rapmarks TUG Review Crew: Elite TUG Member

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    We used to go for entire week to bay hill tournament in Orlando. Bring a chair and go early. We had a spot that enabled you to get up and watch action on a couple of other holes when a bigger name was going by, then move on to the 18th hole grandstand later in the day.
    Once I got up, thank goodness. I was near the green on a par three. Golfer hit ball into my chair and it bounced into my bag. They had to make a ruling for the drop.
    Saw tiger many times and once thought I would be smothered as the crowd closed in around me so tight to see his tee shot.
     
  13. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Wow. They should'a let you keep the ball, like in baseball.
    .
     
  14. bryanphunter

    bryanphunter TUG Member

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    DW and I have gone to the Waste Management Pheonix Open twice in the past three years. I usually look at the tee times and look for a grouping of players that I want to see up close. Last year we parked ourselves at the 3rd hole tee box and watched 5 or 6 groups come through. That was we got to see the pro's up close and hear their banter with fans, caddies, and fellow players. We watched Jordan, Phil, Rickie, Matt Kuchar, Jon Rahm, etc since they were in groups all in a row.

    We then had some lunch and stretched our legs walking with the group that had Rickie Fowler in it. We spent a bit time at the infamous 16th. It's packed but later in the day with less famous pro's is a good time to get in and find a place to sit.

    Finished the day watching Phil play his final holes and parked ourselves near the 18th fairway/green.

    Going on Thursday or Friday has smaller crowds. For $20, Valet with the Princess Resort? You can then walk through the resort lobby and come out and enter through a special entrance near ??? green.
     
  15. SmithOp

    SmithOp TUG Member

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    Most golfers that hit into the crowd will sign a ball and give it to the person.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
     
  16. Big Matt

    Big Matt TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I would suggest doing both. Start at 9 or 18 and go backwards watching groups on tees then greens. Almost everyone does the opposite so you are ahead of the crowds. Then find a green you want to park yourself for a few groups and the keep going backwards to either 1 or 10. Then do the other nine. Works best on thursdays and fridays when they tee off both 1 and 10. It takes about two hours for the first group to get to the end of their first nine so that let’s you get there at a reasonable time.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  17. x3 skier

    x3 skier TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I’ve attended many events but usually as a volunteer on the course. Being in one location, following a group or wandering around is your choice. I liked the green assignments best as you can see the approach shot and putts.

    My best job was as a volunteer on-course reporter for NBC for the Senior Open in Dayton OH. I was assigned to followed a pairing inside the ropes and report to the NBC command folks the status of each player as they approached the ball.

    One memorable moment was when I was assigned to follow The Walrus, Craig Stadler. The NBC team asked what did he lie as he approached the green. I replied 5 (a par four hole). “What!?” “One in the trees, one back in the trees, one into the fairway, one over the green and one back over the green.” He eventually took a 7 IIRC.

    I still have my PRESS Armband and NBC hat signed by entire announcing crew. Great job even with no pay:cool:

    Cheers
     
  18. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Ha! Seeing a pro take themselves out is like looking at a car crash.
    You hate to see it, but it's mesmerizing nonetheless.
    .
     
  19. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I was whacked by a wayward ball from Yani Tseng at ANA Inspiration 3 years ago. She was very apologetic and signed a ball on the spot and gave it to me.
     
  20. Steve Fatula

    Steve Fatula TUG Member

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    We followed Nick Price at the 94 PGA championship in Tulsa OK. He crushed everyone. I love Southern Hills, tough course, but Nick made it look easy. I went with my Dad, he was 74 at that time. A lot of walking, but he was in great shape.
     
  21. zinger1457

    zinger1457 Guest

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    Have been to the tournament in Phoenix many times but not in the past 3 years, don't think I've ever paid more than $10 for a ticket. There were always people in the parking area or on the walk from the shuttle stop to the main entrance selling tickets cheap. Entrance is free for military/veterans. Even though crowded the TPC course is great for watching, wide open and most holes have high banks along the fairways and around the greens for good viewing. Hole 16 is mostly private sponsor sections now, there will be long lines to get into general seating areas, best to avoid unless you got time to waste.
     
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  22. Talent312

    Talent312 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I think I'll avoid the unwashed masses on #16.
    At least it'll take a lot of spectators off the course... Thanks.
     

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