The Dunes Golf & Beach Club of Myrtle Beach, S.C., the historic jewel among the famed 60-mile “Grand Strand” in the Palmetto State, will be joined by the popular Grande Dunes Resort Club as co-hosts of the 47th PGA Professional National Championship presented by Club Car, Mercedes-Benz and OMEGA, June 22-25, 2014. It marks the second visit to South Carolina by The PGA of America’s showcase event for PGA Professionals.
The Championship will bring a field of 312 to Myrtle Beach, acclaimed as “the Golf Capital of the World” for its roster of 120 golf courses. The PGA Professional National Championship was last conducted in South Carolina in 2005 at The Ocean Course in Kiawah Island.
“The PGA of America is very proud to be taking our National Championship in 2014 to Myrtle Beach, a resort destination that has embraced the game of golf unlike few other sites in the world,” said PGA of America President Ted Bishop. “The Dunes Golf & Beach Club and Grande Dunes are outstanding venues to test our best-playing PGA Professionals. When you think about the history of golf in Myrtle Beach and how many members of our Association made an impact upon that region, you could not ask for a better setting for this Championship.”
Designed in 1948 by legendary Robert Trent Jones Sr., the Dunes Golf & Beach Club will serve as the primary host course in the National Championship, including the final 36 holes. All contestants will compete the first two rounds on The Dunes and Grande Dunes Resort Club.
The site of the Senior Tour Championship from 1994-1999, The Dunes also has hosted the final stage of the 1973 PGA Tour Qualifying School that yielded such golfers as Ben Crenshaw, Gary McCord and Gil Morgan.
The Dunes Golf & Beach Club is ranked among “America’s Greatest 100 Public Courses” by Golf Digest and Golfweek, and Golf Digest’s “Best in State.” It is listed by GOLF Magazine among “The Best You Can Play” 100 courses in the U.S. The par-72 Dunes Golf & Beach Club extends to 7,195 yards and the only layout in Myrtle Beach with ocean views. Prior to the 2014 National Championship, Rees Jones, son of the late Robert Trent Jones Sr., will lead renovations that include converting green surfaces from bentgrass to Champion Bermudagrass, and modifying tees and bunkers.
“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to welcome the country’s most skilled club professionals for their most prestigious annual event,” said Dunes Club PGA head professional Dennis Nicholl. “We have been fortunate to host a number of high-level professional and amateur golf tournaments in the past and are excited to serve The PGA of America.”
The Dunes Golf & Beach Club was host of the former Senior Tour Championship from 1994-1999, and was home to the Golf Writers Association of America National Championship from 1954-2005.
The Robert Trent Jones course has been named one of the nation’s “Top 100 Courses” by Golf Magazine, Golf Digest and Golfweek, and the famed 13th hole, known as “Waterloo,” has been selected by Golf Digest as one of the “Best 18 Holes in America.” The Dunes Golf and Beach Club, the premier golf course in Myrtle Beach is the only one with Ocean views.
Grande Dunes Resort Club, designed by the Robert Rulewich Group and opened in 2001, lies in the heart of Myrtle Beach. It was recognized as the National Golf Course of the Year by the National Golf Course Owners Association in 2009, and rests among Golf Digest’s “Best in State” roster for 2013-14.
The winner of The Sun News “Best of the Beach” from 2001-07, Grande Dunes has hosted two John Deere World Championships and two Carolinas PGA South Carolina Opens among many other regional and Section events. PGA Magazine calls Grande Dunes, “one of the great golf clubs of the world.”
“There have been many great venues in this country to host the PGA Professional National Championship. We believe that The Dunes – one of the greatest Robert Trent Jones Sr. of all-time – and Grande Dunes Resort each provide the same championship challenges for this great field of PGA Professionals,” said PGA Professional Bob Mauragas, president of National Golf Management, which oversees Grande Dunes Resort Club among 22 facilities within the Myrtle Beach area. “Grande Dunes could be extended to 7,600 yards, and its mixture of par-3s and par-5s have the ability to offer all sorts of challenges. The views along the U.S. Intracoastal Waterway add to a great golf experience.”
The Grande Dunes Resort Club’s links-style design is situated on a bluff along the Intracoastal Waterway featuring seven holes with dramatic views of the waterway. Complementing the outstanding course is a world-class practice facility.
In 2014, the low 20 scorers in the PGA Professional National Championship will advance to the 96th PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky.
About The PGA Professional National Championship
Begun in 1968, The PGA Professional National Championship provides additional playing opportunities for PGA Professionals. In over four decades, it has become the showcase event for PGA Professionals, featuring some of the finest players in the Association. The Championship features a 312-player field representing 41 PGA Sections competing at the peak of their games, and with its 20 top finishers earning a berth in the PGA Championship.
The National Championship was first televised live by Golf Channel in 1997 to viewers across the U.S., Canada, China, Japan, Korea, Latin America, Malaysia, the Middle East, Scandinavia, and Singapore. This year’s PGA Professional National Championship has a potential audience of 110 million.
This summer’s 46th National Championship will be contested June 23-26, at Sunriver (Ore.) Resort. The PGA Professional National Championship has been conducted in 15 states: Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Wisconsin.
About The PGA of America
Since its founding in 1916, The PGA of America has maintained a twofold mission: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf. By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, The PGA enables its professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in the multi-billion dollar golf industry. By creating and delivering world-class championships and innovative programs, The PGA of America elevates the public’s interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere. As The PGA nears its centennial, the PGA brand represents the very best in golf.