Golf Tournament Makes History In The Bahamas
When the first tee ball is struck at the Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic on May 23, another piece of golf history will be made in the Bahamas. It will be the first women’s professional event contested in this tiny country that has about 12 golf courses and less than 1,000 registered amateur golfers.
The PGA TOUR made a brief two-year stop when it conducted the Bahamas Open in 1970-71, and the Father-Son Celebrity Classic, affiliated with the PGA TOUR Champions Tour, was held at the Ocean Club until about six years ago. But now women’s golf in the Bahamas is taking center stage.
Two-time Bahamas National Women’s Amateur Champion (2003, 2007) Georgette Rolle will make her LPGA debut after receiving a sponsor’s exemption into the field. Rolle, 28, is one of the country’s most accomplished women golfers. She played golf at Texas Southern University and currently is a teaching professional and assistant coach at her alma mater.
“It’s an awesome opportunity to be able to play at home,” said Rolle. “It’s really special. I am happy and excited. I don’t know if I’ll have a home course advantage, but it will be nice to play at home, and, hopefully I can play well.”
The strong field also boasts World Golf Hall-of-Fame member Se Ri Pak and eight major championship winners.
“Our field is shaping up to be one of the strongest of the year,” said Matt Truax, tournament director.
The community also has turned out to support the new venture that has the backing of the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and the Pure Silk Company. Nearly 400 volunteers have signed on to support the tournament, including students from several local school programs.
Lyford Cay, St. Andrews, Queens and the Governor General Program all have students who will serve as standard bearers. And former junior star Taneka Sandiford is even coming home to volunteer at the event.
Sandiford is currently a freshman and scholarship golfer at Redlands Community College in El Reno, Okla. She was a long-time junior member of the Bahamas Golf Federation.
Sam Hall is lending his voice to the event as well. Hall had been the first tee announcer at the Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational for many years. The Jordan Celebrity Invitational was contested annually at the Ocean Club on the eastern end of Paradise Island until recently.
Cable Bahamas and The Tribune Newspaper also will support the event locally through their media properties.
Admission and general parking will be free for all spectators during the week. For more information, visit the tournament Web at www.puresilkbahamas.com. The Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic is one of three new tournaments on the LPGA schedule for 2013.
Media are invited to register for working credentials online at www.lpgamediacredentials.com. And volunteers are still being accepted online or by email to Emily Palacioz at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up is free and volunteers will receive logoed shirts, preferred parking and free meals on the days they are working.
About Pure Silk
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About the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism The Islands Of The Bahamas have a place in the sun for everyone from Nassau and Paradise Island to Grand Bahama to The Abaco Islands, The Exuma Islands, Harbour Island, Long Island and others. Each island has its own personality and attractions for a variety of vacation styles with some of the world’s best golf, scuba diving, fishing, sailing, boating, as well as, shopping and dining. The destination offers an easily accessible tropical getaway and provides convenience for travelers with pre-clearance through U.S. customs and immigration, and the Bahamian dollar at par with the U.S. dollar. Do everything or do nothing, just remember It’s Better in The Bahamas. For more information on travel packages, activities and accommodations, call 1-800-Bahamas or visit www.Bahamas.com. Look for The Bahamas on the web on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. To purchase one-of-a-kind items from The Bahamas, visit www.eshopbahamas.com.
About the LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association)
The LPGA is the world’s leading professional golf organization for women. Founded in 1950, the association celebrates a diverse and storied membership with more than 1,700 members representing 29 different countries. With a Vision to inspire, empower, educate and entertain by showcasing the very best of women’s golf, LPGA Tour Professionals compete across the globe, while dedicated LPGA Teaching and Club Professionals (T&CP) directly impact the game through teaching, coaching and management. The Symetra Tour consistently produces a pipeline of talent ready for the world stage. The LPGA is headquartered in Daytona Beach, Florida.