Arizona golf tournaments attract out-of-state visitors, impact economy

Arizona offers the ideal environment and climate for golf year-round. Not only is it a perfect location for recreational golf, but it also hosts two major golf tournaments annually – the Waste Management Open and the PGA Tour Charles Schwab Cup. Annual golf brings both entertainment and economic impact to the state.

The state’s gorgeous weather creates one of the biggest advantages for golf in Arizona. Arizona Tourism and Lodging Association Executive Vice President David Drennon explains, “From mild winters in Southern Arizona to cool summers in Northern Arizona, an ideal golf getaway can be found year-round in Arizona. Statewide golf courses are as diverse and spectacular as is our state’s landscape.”

Arizona’s sunny locale offers entertainment for both players and spectators, and the industry provides a valuable boost to the state economy. According to a University of Arizona study, the golf industry generated $3.9 billion and more than 41,000 jobs for the state in 2014.

“The Waste Management Phoenix Open and the Charles Schwab Cup Championship are important annual events which support economic growth, job creation, and help in attracting domestic and foreign travelers and investors,” Drennon continued. “The 2017 Waste Management Phoenix Open pumped $389 million into Arizona’s economy, according to an ASU W.P. Carey School of Business.”

In fact, golf draws many out-of-state visitors as well – both spectators and players. According to the same University of Arizona study, an approximate one-third of golf rounds played in 2014 came from out-of-state and out-of-country visitors. These tourists also accounted for almost $600 million of the golf industry’s economic impact in 2014.

Drennon notes that tourism positively impacts both the sport and businesses. He explains, “These tournaments transcend the sport as vital venues to entertain and attract visitors and business leaders to the state. Each has also become a venue for getting business done, where important economic development work is driving corporate attraction.”

In the second year of the PGA Charles Schwab Cup, the tournament will host the Experience Arizona Walk, which provides players and visitors with a sampling of our state’s travel and tourism gems from attractions and destinations to hotels and resorts. Drennon states that these tournaments offer opportunities for media coverage and worldwide viewership, which “elevate Arizona for millions to see our breathtaking landscapes and get a glimpse of the extraordinary quality of life we enjoy in Arizona.”

Arizona golf offers unparalleled opportunities for spectators, players, and businesses. Due to the popularity of recreational golf and professional tournaments in the state, the sport helps to bolster the economy and attract visitors from around the world.

Ben Norman

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