By Chris Chaney
Clermont County’s proximity to high-level professional sports often spoils local sports enthusiasts, but there are a still a few pros that don’t make the Queen City and its surrounding region an annual stop.
Since the Web.Com Tour — formerly the Nationwide Tour — moved the Chiquita Classic away from TPC River’s Bend in Maineville in 2011, professional golf has never been closer than the Memorial Tournament held annually in Dublin.
While the Memorial acts as one of the most prestigious stops on the PGA Tour each year, thanks in large part to the presence of Ohio’s native son and golf legend Jack Nicklaus, the PGA of America is bringing one of the four biggest events of the golfing calendar to within day-trip distance next week.
The PGA Championship, the fourth and final major championship of 2014, will be played Aug. 7-10 at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky.
Less than two hours from The Clermont Sun offices, die hard sports fans can get within mere inches of the best golfers in the world playing in one of the biggest events of the year.
Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson, Adam Scott and 152 others will be inside the ropes at Valhalla hoping to lay claim to the final major championship of the season. Barring any withdrawals between when the field was announced on July 28 and the start of play on Aug. 7, the championship will feature every player ranked inside the top-100 in the Official World Golf Ranking, the first time that has happened in a major championship this year.
Weekend tickets from the PGA of America have been sold out, but reputable online ticket brokers such as StubHub and VividSeats have weekend passes for as low as $50.00 per day. What’s more, complimentary grounds access is available daily for juniors age 17 or younger who are accompanied by a ticketed adult. Also, select military personnel, including activists, military retirees, reservists and civilians with a Department of Defense ID, are admitted free.
If it’s a more laid back atmosphere you’re after, tickets for the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday practice rounds are available on the PGA of America’s website for just $35 per adult and elsewhere for as low as $8 per ticket. Practice rounds allow patrons to take pictures and seek out autographs while the players prepare for the tournament proper.