KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCBD) – PGA officials say this week’s championship at the Ocean Course could have not gone any better for fans and players alike finishing with a story book ending Phil Mickelson win.
From the story of Mickelson’s win to the return of the fans and everything in between. After years of planning and preparation, officials and fans say they couldn’t have asked for a better outcome.
The roar of the fans returning to the ocean course nearly a decade after the Ocean Course hosted it’s last Major Championship.
“We couldn’t really ask for more as far as the turnout from our spectators, the competition itself, the course and the weather was unbelievable so we’re extremely happy,” says Ryan Ogle who served as the Championship Director for the Ocean Course.
There was no shortage of uncertainty early on over whether the tournament would happen. That uncertainty quickly turned into an opportunity to put Charleston on the national stage.
“We couldn’t be more excited to have spectators back and really throw on a party that I think added to the championship,” says Ogle. “It added to the week, to the competition.”
From thousands of fans lining the fairways, to the tradition of volunteers manning the course and PGA merchandise flying off the racks. Ogle says there’s a lot to be thankful for after this week’s tournament.
“You know we had to restock halfway through the week and it’s just a great trend and it’s great to see,” says Ogle. “I think people are excited to come back and support events.”
Even on the tail end of COVID-19, Charleston shined through once again and Ogle thinks the Lowcountry will likely continue to shine for years to come.
“It’s incredible,” says Ogle. “Everyone is raving about how good this course looks. You’ve got the video of the Lowcountry, Charleston and the beaches. I don’t see how this can’t have a positive impact in the community for years to come.”
For the Ocean Course with a Ryder Cup in 1991 and a PGA Championship back in 2012 already under it’s belt, officials say this year’s event will likely be hard to top.
“We’re extremely thankful and look forward to doing it again in the future,” says Ogle.
The exact number of fans on hand for this week’s event and the full extent of the economic impact of the tournament are still to be seen but numbers could the strongest for an event in the Lowcountry since of the beginning of the pandemic.