by Brenton Crozier
The Players Championship, taking place May 9-15 at TPC Sawgrass, is Jacksonville’s most esteemed sporting event and one of the city’s most celebrated events period. Sorry, monster truck rally fans. The event is getting a fan-centric facelift created largely in part to fan feedback over the last few years. Copious amounts of comfort and fun are in store. From several new course venues and charitable events to more pragmatic improvements for cell phone usage and parking and player accessibility, this year’s Players Championship is sure to set a new precedent for event goers. So go ahead sport, tee up that ticket and enjoy.
You wanted it. More shade, more bathrooms, some areas to enjoy some good ol’ R&R from the hectic and energy consuming activity of watching golf; well, your cries have been heard and you got them. Here is a list of the new tournament venues for this year’s contest and a truncated explanation of why you should be interested:
JELD-WEN Stadium Village – Completely air-conditioned venue with cell phone and mobile device access, restrooms, cash bar and activities. Take note party people, this is one of only two locations outside of private hospitality venues, where you can purchase mixed drinks.
The Terrace – Located on the clubhouse side lawn, The Terrace is an exterior fan zone featuring a cash bar, tables and umbrellas. And keep your notepad out because The Terrace is the other location where you can purchase your mixed drinks.
Four Points – Located south of the clubhouse, Four Points is an exterior fan zone with seating and food and beverages for purchase. You do need to consume something at some point that isn’t booze!
The Grove – You’ll find The Grove behind the 17th hole tee. This outdoor, shaded are features tables and umbrellas next to The Food Court, where you can enjoy a wealth of culinary choices.
The Patio – The Patio is located close to 10th hole tee and the 18th hole hospitality area and offers another shaded are with tables and food and beverages for purchase. Sound familiar? Trust me, you’ll need all the shady pit stops you can get.
The Bluff – Away with the grandstands around the 18th hole green! Get close to the action, especially if you’re one of the first 200 fans to arrive at the area (you will be rewarded with a comfy chair at no charge and a prime location to take in the players performance on the last hole of the course). The Bluff includes casual seating, a wait staff, food and drinks.
The Courtyard – Behind the 16th hole green, The Courtyard is a private, open-air location serving beer, wine, soda and snacks, to give a daily hospitality option to local businesses.
It’s not all about golf! There are many participatory and charitable events surrounding The Players Championship this year, some new, some old. Get involved and make the most out of the entire tournament week!
THE PLAYERS 5K with Donna Sunday, May 8th (Mother’s Day) at 8 am on Atlantic Beach and Sunday, May 15th throughout the Day
New – World Golf Hall of Fame Induction Monday, May 9th at 6 pm at the World Golf Village
New – The First Tee Tuesday Tuesday, May 10th and throughout the day
Darius Rucker Performs for Military Appreciation Day and Support Wednesday, May 11th at 5:30 pm and throughout the day
Community Peds Care – These Kids Can Play! – Wild Things Wednesday, May 11th from 9:30 to 11:30 am
MS (Multiple Sclerosis) Day at THE PLAYERS
Thursday, May 12th