Tournament to be held at the historic Papago Golf Course owned by the City of Phoenix
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Feb.5, 2009 - The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) and Tournament Golf Foundation (TGF) today announce that the 2009 Phoenix LPGA International Presented by Mirassou Winery will be played March 26-29 at Papago Golf Course in Phoenix, Ariz. Owned by the City of Phoenix since 1963, and long considered one of the country's finest and most popular municipal golf courses, Papago underwent an extensive restoration project in 2008. The course reopened to residents of Phoenix in December 2008 and is already receiving accolades from the golf industry for its new and improved look.
"The Phoenix event has long been one of the most popular and storied stops on the LPGA Tour, with past champions ranging from Betsy King to Laura Davies to Annika Sorenstam to, most recently, Lorena Ochoa," remarked LPGA Commissioner Carolyn F. Bivens. "This March we will add an exciting new chapter in the event's history when our players step foot on this beautifully renovated city-owned course. We look forward to engaging with the people of Phoenix in a truly new and unique way as we compete on their championship course for the first time."
"Adding to the excitement of unveiling the new and improved Papago, we are thrilled to announce that its freshly restored greens and fairways will soon be filled by the world's most talented and prolific professional golfers from the LPGA," said Phoenix Mayor, Phil Gordon. "We are excited to partner with the LPGA and TGF to ensure this important event stays in Phoenix."
The Papago restoration project is a direct result of a partnership between the City of Phoenix and the Arizona Golf Foundation, a non-profit arm of the Arizona Golf Association. The project is managed by The Golf Guys, LLC, under the direction of Marvin French, one of the principals at the highly acclaimed Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in Oregon. As part of the restoration, designed by course architect and former Augusta National Golf Club Superintendent, Billy Fuller, all of the greens, tees, fairways and rough have been re-turfed, all of the bunkers have been restored, and select holes have been lengthened so that the course now boasts a championship yardage of 7,333 yards.
"Phoenix is excited that the LPGA has selected Papago Golf Course to host their tournament," said Phoenix City Councilman, Greg Stanton. "The selection of Papago by this prestigious golf tour shows the significant investments made were well worth it and we're looking forward to hosting these championship golfers"
The four-day, 72-hole tournament has been part of the LPGA Tour schedule since 1980. For the past five seasons, Superstition Mountain Golf and Country Club, located just outside Phoenix, hosted the event.
"TGF is proud to add Papago Golf Club to the list of prestigious courses hosting our events over the years," said TGF President Tom Maletis. "Superstition Mountain Golf and Country Club was a tremendous partner, but the LPGA professionals will surely appreciate the Papago Golf Course experience and the proximity to everything the City of Phoenix has to offer."
About Papago Golf Course
Papago Golf Course opened in 1963 under the design of famed golf course architect William Francis "Billy" Bell and quickly became one of the finest municipal golf courses in the country. It was host of the 1971 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship, and was the neighborhood city course for some of Arizona's most recognizable junior players, including Billy Mayfair and Heather and Missy Farr. Papago Golf Course sits on the borders of Phoenix, Tempe and Scottsdale, surrounded by the beautiful Papago Buttes and is conveniently located less than two miles from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. The course underwent an extensive renovation in 2008 and re-opened to the public in December of that year. For more information, go to www.papagogolfcourse.net or call (602) 275-8428.
About Tournament Golf Foundation
TGF, a non-profit organization is currently the managing organizer and is responsible for the Phoenix LPGA International presented by Mirassou in Phoenix and the Safeway Classic presented by Coca-Cola in Portland. The tournaments feature purses of $1.5 and $1.7 million, respectively. In addition to showcasing the best in women's professional golf, TGF is committed to benefiting local charities in its tournament markets. Since 1972, TGF has donated more than $15 million to local children's charities in Oregon and Arizona including Banner Health Foundation, Safeway Foundation, Waverly Children's Home, Boys and Girls Clubs, Easter Seals, Oregon Junior Golf, Evans Scholars Foundation, the Children's Course and Police Activities League. For more information, go to www.phoenixlpga.com and www.safewayclassic.com.
About the Ladies Professional Golf Association
The LPGA features a membership comprised of world-class LPGA Tour professionals and dedicated Teaching and Club Professionals (T&CP). Today's LPGA Tour features the most talented global group of professional athletes who, in 2009, will compete in a minimum of 30 official money events in 10 countries with total prize money of nearly $55 million. In addition to its dynamic Tour members, 1,200 certified LPGA T&CP members serve the golf industry in teaching, coaching and management positions, and oversee programs aimed at increasing the involvement of women, girls and youth in golf. The LPGA's Vision is to inspire, empower, educate and entertain by showcasing the best golf professionals in the world. Its Mission is to be a leader in the world of sports, to promote economic empowerment for all members, and to serve as role models on and off the course. The LPGA is headquartered in Daytona Beach, Fla. For more information on the LPGA, log on to www.LPGA.com.
Topics: Press Release