‘Major’ buzz hits Parker

Town to play host to Senior PGA Championship in 2010

Posted 11/24/08

The PGA is coming to Parker, and it is sure to be a “major” event. The PGA of America announced Nov. 20 that the Colorado Golf Club in Parker …

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‘Major’ buzz hits Parker

Town to play host to Senior PGA Championship in 2010


The PGA is coming to Parker, and it is sure to be a “major” event.

The PGA of America announced Nov. 20 that the Colorado Golf Club in Parker would be the site of the 71st Senior PGA Championship 2010, the most historic and prestigious event in senior golf.

The championship will be May 24-30, 2010, at the club.

The 71st Senior PGA Championship becomes the third major championship of senior golf in Colorado. In 1993, the U.S. Senior Open was at Cherry Hills in Englewood, and just this year, the Open came to The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs.

Since the Colorado Golf Championship opened for play in 2007, it has been hailed by the national golf community as one of the premier new courses in America.

Colorado Golf Club founder and managing partner Mike McGetrick said being able to have the facility host a PGA major event has been yet another dream of his since he first walked the land prior to the club’s construction.

“The chance to host a major championship is just special,” McGetrick said. “I can remember days walking the property a couple years when it was all native. And then it was neat seeing the first stages of a golf course. And then when we opened, and had our first member-guest, it was Players Night and we had lights out on the range. We had activities for the members and our guests, and I remember just how special that was.

“And now, here’s a golf course, and we have a couple hundred people out here. So now, the next things that’s going to be neat is to see some of the best players in the world playing the golf course, playing for a championship and the thousands of spectators out there.”

The course at Colorado Golf Club was designed by Bill Coore and two-time Masters Champion Ben Crenshaw. Although some of its fairways are reputed to be roller coasters, the links were designed to be walked, spread across 1,700 acres of a former Arabian horse ranch.

Since its birth, the club has been recognized by Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, Golfweek and Travel and Leisure as one of the best new courses in the nation.

“Colorado Golf Club’s pedigree on the American golf landscape is barely over two years old, but it lies on a piece of property that seems like it was destined to be the site of a great golf course,” said PGA of America president, Jim Remy, in a press release. “The PGA of America is very excited to be able to host the Senior PGA Championship at Colorado Golf Club in the spring of 2010, which will connect the greatest senior players in the game to Colorado’s enthusiastic and knowledgeable golf fans.”

The course is a par-72 layout that can make 7,604 yards if need be, the longest course to host a Senior PGA Championship. McGetrick said the course wouldn’t need much modification if any to host the PGA major.

“The Colorado Golf Club is a beautiful natural site for golf,” Crenshaw said in a statement. “The excellent topography lent itself to a diversity of holes, providing a challenge to all golfers. It’s a well-rounded test which will showcase the individual player’s skills in the Senior PGA Championship.”

Although a couple of senior PGA players have graced the Colorado Golf Club prior to the announcement, McGetrick said he hopes to most-of-all see Crenshaw hit the links in the 2010 championship.

“I think it would be pretty special to see him compete for a major championship on his own golf course,” McGetrick said. “He’s never done that before, and it would be neat to see.”

The PGA visited the Colorado Golf Club last year for a site visit, McGetrick said, prior to the facility filing an application for host consideration. About the middle of this year, the PGA notified McGetrick and company they were interested in having the Senior PGA Championship at the enclaved Parker location.

With the decision agreed upon and made public, the real work begins. McGetrick said the facility’s No. 1 priority coming back from Thanksgiving is sitting down to go through an organizational chart for the event and create a game plan for a successful championship. Of course, a successful Senior PGA Championship in 2010 could invite other PGA events for the Colorado Golf Club down the road.

“This is something our club, the membership and the ownership has supported and embraced,” McGetrick said. “We hope that this is one of many [PGA events]. The Senior PGA Championship is going to showcase Colorado Golf Club, and really the success of this tournament will have a lot to do with future opportunities.”

Although it’s too early to say, McGetrick is guessing the event is going to need possibly 1,500-2,000 volunteers. Organizers are just now putting that together. Parking at the facility is also expected to host thousands of spectators easily.

“We have so much land, and so much adjacent land to the Colorado Golf Club, that it won’t be an issue,” the club founder said. “In fact, it’s more of a benefit for getting people on and off the facility.”

With a high volume of spectators in attendance, the Parker community stands to benefit highly in economic numbers. McGetrick said past Senior PGA Championships have generated anywhere from $25 million to $35 million in the community; however, its the community that is going to be key in making the PGA visit a success.

“The success of this championship is going to be the support of the community, the state [and] the volunteer base,” McGetrick said. “We’re very sincere when we say this. We are looking forward to having everyone’s involvement, cause we can’t do it by ourselves.

“In any successful endeavor, the backbone is a great team, and the community is going to be our team.”

The Senior PGA Championship, which started in 1937 at the suggestion of Bobby Jones, is the oldest major championship in senior golf. The first championship was played at Augusta National Golf Club three years after the first Masters tournament.

Gene Sarazen, Sam Snead, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Lee Trevino, Jack Nicklaus, Raymond Floyd, Hale Irwin, Tom Watson and Jay Hass are among some of the game’s top players who have won the event’s Alfred S. Bourne trophy.

For more information about the 71st Senior PGA Championship 2010, visit the event’s official Web site atwww.SeniorPGA2010 .com.

To learn more about the Colorado Golf Club, visit www.ColoradoGolfClub.com.


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