WYNDHAM CHAMPIONSHIP LAUNCHES 75TH ANNIVERSARY – A YEARLONG CELEBRATION OF PGA TOUR GOLF IN THE PIEDMONT TRIAD
Tournament Launches New Website Today
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Only five PGA TOUR events have celebrated a 75th anniversary, but in 2014 that number grows to six as the Wyndham Championship celebrates the playing of its 75th tournament, the Wyndham announced today. The 75th annual Wyndham Championship is set for Aug. 11-17, 2014.
Founded in 1938 as the Greater Greensboro Open, the Wyndham enjoys a rich and storied past. The tournament’s early winners, Sam Snead, Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson among them, are not only World Golf Hall of Fame members but also among the greatest ever to play the game. Seventeen World Golf Hall of Famers have won 27 of the Wyndham Championship’s 74 previous events – roughly 36 percent.
The Wyndham Championship will celebrate its 75th anniversary for most of 2014. The tournament has a special 75th anniversary logo which was officially unveiled during a news conference today at Sedgefield Country Club, the home of the Wyndham Championship. The event will host special events related to its 75th anniversary throughout the Piedmont Triad region, and the first is tonight in Greensboro. The Wyndham is sponsoring the Greensboro Partnership’s Annual Meeting featuring Governor Pat McCrory. Other events, still in the planning stages, will be announced at a later date.
“We are planning on making this year’s Wyndham Championship the biggest event in our history as we celebrate 75 years of PGA TOUR golf in the Piedmont Triad,” tournament director Mark Brazil said. “When our tournament was founded in 1938, it played a major role in the creation of the PGA TOUR, and the list of golfers who have won our tournament is incredible. We have 17 World Golf Hall of Famers, including Snead, Nelson, Hogan, Player and Ballesteros, on our list of winners – that’s pretty impressive. We are proud of our history, and we are looking forward to celebrating it this year.”
At the tournament in August, former champions will return to Sedgefield to take part in special activities commemorating the tournament’s 75th anniversary. Fans entering the event on Forsyth Drive will see the tournament’s “History Walk” highlighting each decade of Wyndham Championships past. In addition, fans will be able to enjoy the new Legend’s Club located at the 10th green where, with an upgraded ticket or weekly badge, fans can purchase tournament concessions and enjoy watching the play on the 10th hole, 11th tee or 18th tee from the comfort of the Legends Club.
“Each year we try to introduce something new at the tournament, and this year it’s the Legends Club presented by Wyndham Worldwide,” Brazil said. “It will be designed and themed around our past champions, and it will be the most affordable hospitality area at the Wyndham Championship. It will be perfect for small business owners who want to entertain their clients as well as individuals who desire an upgraded tournament experience.”
The 75th anniversary celebration also includes a charitable component. Wyndham Worldwide will debut Birdies Fore BackpacksSM., a program through which Wyndham Worldwide and the Wyndham Championship will fund charitable organizations throughout the Piedmont Triad that send school children home with backpacks full of nutritious food over the weekends during the school year so they have enough food to eat until they return to school the next week.
Fans will have the opportunity to solicit donations for every birdie made by PGA TOUR golfers during the Wyndham Championship. After the tournament, the pledged donations will be distributed to partnering backpack programs in the triad region. Wyndham Worldwide has kicked off this program with an initial $50,000 donation to Birdies Fore Backpacks in order to reach as many kids in need throughout the Piedmont Triad. Birdies Fore Backpacks replaces Wyndham’s successful Charity of Choice program conducted by Wishes by Wyndham, the tournament’s official charity, for the last three years.
“During the week of the 2011 Wyndham Championship, the headlines in the local papers focused on the dire need for food donations to the local food banks. In partnership with the Wyndham Championship, we made a $100,000 donation to the Second Harvest Food Bank” said Alyson Johnson, senior vice president of marketing and communications for Wyndham Worldwide. “Currently, there are more than 618,000 children in North Carolina who do not have enough food to eat and only 33 percent of those in need are getting assistance. Through Birdies Fore Backpacks, we hope to support the children of the triad in a more meaningful way.”
In October, the Wyndham Championship 75th anniversary celebration will focus on Breast Cancer Awareness during National Breast Cancer Awareness month. The tournament will host a 75-hole golf outing through which the tournament will raise funds for Play for Pink, a grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer through sporting and lifestyle events including men’s and women’s golf and tennis tournaments, swim meets, card games, equestrian events and shopping benefits. Participants will play 75 holes in one day at Sedgefield Country Club; golfers will recruit sponsors who will pledge a certain amount of money for each hole the participant completes. After the event, the money raised by each participant will be donated to further Breast Cancer awareness.
Social Media is also part of the Wyndham’s 75th anniversary celebration. Beginning today and continuing through Thursday, March 13, Wyndham is hosting the “History Lives #AtTheWyndham” Instagram Contest. Historic photos from the tournament will be posted to the Wyndham Championship Instagram page. Clues that will assist in identifying photos will be posted on a weekly basis to the tournament’s Twitter and Facebook accounts. To enter the contest, fans need to correctly identify the photo using a specific keyword and the hashtag #AtTheWyndham on the Instagram page.
Each week, one lucky fan will be randomly selected to win 75,000 Wyndham Rewards points. Wyndham Rewards is the free-to-join guest loyalty program of Wyndham Hotel Group, part of Wyndham Worldwide. The world’s largest lodging loyalty program, as measured by number of participating hotels, Wyndham Rewards offers members the chance to earn and redeem points for stays at nearly 7,000 hotels throughout more than 50 countries worldwide. Non-members can enroll at www.wyndhamrewards.com.
In conjunction with the Wyndham’s 75th anniversary, the tournament also announced the launch of its new, enhanced website this morning. Designed by Wilson McGuire Creative and 336 Creative in Winston-Salem, the new website has a modern look and feel while showcasing 75 years of tournament history.
Celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2014 and contested annually on the Donald Ross-designed course at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C., the Wyndham Championship was founded in 1938 and is the sixth-oldest event on the PGA TOUR excluding the Majors. Tickets are available at www.wyndhamchampionship.com or through the tournament office. The tournament thanks title sponsor Wyndham Worldwide, presenting sponsor BB&T and Premier Partners, Cadillac, Harris Teeter, McConnell Golf, New Breed Logistics, Sunbrella®, Technology Concepts & Design, Inc. and VF Corporation for their continued support. Additional tournament information, including ticket packages and sponsorship information, is available at www.wyndhamchampionship.com or through the tournament office at (336) 379-1570. For more information about Wyndham Worldwide, please visit www.wyndhamworldwide.com. Stay connected with the Wyndham Championship through its social media channels, including the Wyndham Championship Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, Foursquare, Flickr and YouTube.
# # #
Rob Goodman, 3-G Sports, LLC
Wyndham Championship Director of Media Relations