Updated 03/20/2013 05:11 PM
Excitement Builds For PGA Championship
Spring has officially arrived, and that has many of us thinking about hitting the links, or at least watching some golf. Soon, all eyes of the golfing world will be on Rochester as we prepare to host the 2013 PGA Championship at Oak Hill this summer.
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"Rochester is a golf mecca."
Some of the greatest golfers will play Oak Hill as the PGA returns to Pittsford in August.
Staff members from the PGA were in town Wednesday and delivered a presentation to local business owners at Midvale Country Club.
Many in the community agree that golf is a great way to mix business with pleasure.
"You just can't underestimate the impact this has. I have clients coming in from all over the country, who want to be here for that week, so it's just a very exciting time," said Mike Kaufman, financial advisor.
The PGA event also provides a big boost for the local economy. From hotels, to restaurants, transportation and vendors, everyone wins. When the PGA was in town in 2003, Greater Rochester Enterprise reported some $2.5 million was collected in taxes.
"It's just a really great opportunity for the community to be involved in something that's on such an international stage," said Erin Cameron, PGA Volunteer Program.
We've heard of Horses on Parade, and Benches on Parade, and now adding to the excitement of the PGA is Golf Balls on Parade. Local artists are painting 5' tall fiberglass golf balls as a way to build local pride and raise fund for charities. The giant-sized golf balls will be on display from Greece to Canandaigua starting in May through August.
"We're going to generate not only work for artists, but we're also gonna raise money for not for profits, and we're going to create a lot of fun for probably 10,000 or 15,000 members of our community to just travel around and smile," said Howie Jacobsen of Dixon Schwabl.
PGA staffers say this event is not possible without teamwork, and the 3,700 volunteers that are responsible for transporting the players, finding them housing, keeping track of scores and posting them, as well as helping out in the media center.
"We're really lucky to have a community that's so strong in golf and enjoys golf so much and is excited about it, so we're really excited to be in this community and to have their support," said Cameron.
"People are just golf nuts here, so having Oak Hill and having the ability to have the best players in the country be here, and I know our crowds are just awesome. I was at the Ryder Cup, and I've never seen people so crazy, so it should be exciting," Kaufman said.
Thousands of golf fans are counting down to that summer day when they can line the fairways and watch some of the greatest golfers tee off at Oak Hill. The PGA championship is celebrating its 95th anniversary this year, and swings into town the week of August 5.