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Myrtle Beach tourism officials are expected to announce next week a PGA Tour event coming to the area

The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce promises an "exciting announcement" at a press conference at The Dunes Golf and Beach Club next Wednesday.

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Myrtle Beach tourism officials are expected to officially announce that a PGA Tour event is coming to the area at a press conference scheduled for next Wednesday.

An invitation to the press conference from the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce states an “exciting announcement” is forthcoming.

The press conference is being held at The Dunes Golf and Beach Club, so if a PGA Tour tournament is in fact announced, it will likely be held at the venerable course that has hosted a number of significant golf events.

Karen Riordan, president and CEO of the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau, said in February that the chamber was in talks with the PGA Tour to bring a tournament to the area.

According to a February article in the Post and Courier of Charleston, the tournament would be held in May beginning in 2024 and would begin with at least a four-year agreement.

The chamber, the S.C. Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism, and Golf Tourism Solutions, a marketing and technology agency that represents the Grand Strand market, are all expected to contribute to the funding of the proposed event.

Additional sponsors are likely already on board or will be sought after an event is announced.

The Myrtle Beach area has hosted a myriad of significant pro and amateur tournaments, but never a PGA Tour event.

A history of high-profile events

The Dunes Club hosted the Senior Tour Championship – now known as the Champions Tour’s Charles Schwab Cup Championship – for six years from 1994-99 before the event moved to TPC Myrtle Beach in 2000 prior to leaving the area.

The Robert Trent Jones design that opened in 1948 has also hosted the PGA of America’s national club pro championship, a U.S. Women’s Open and the finals of the PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament, among other high-profile tournaments.

The course stretches to 7,450 yards and would likely be lengthened with new tee boxes and further altered to increase its difficulty for a tour event.

Not all PGA Tour events are created equally. There are events for only the top players with elevated purses, regular weekly tour events, and tournaments held the same week as top-tier events – including the British Open, WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship and Arnold Palmer Invitational – with lesser purses.

Regular tour events in 2023 have average purses of more than $8 million, while purses for designated elevated events are $20 million and coinciding events are $3.8 million.

Funding has always been a primary roadblock to the Myrtle Beach area hosting a PGA Tour event since there is little industry and no major corporations based in the area.

The PGA Tour has been in South Carolina for 55 years with the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head Island.

The state has been home to a second PGA Tour event in each of the past two years, as Congaree Golf Club in Ridgeland has hosted a pair of events that were displaced by the coronavirus pandemic.

It hosted the relocated 2021 RBC Canadian Open and the 2022 CJ Cup, which was created as an event in Korea.

Kiawah Island’s Ocean Course has hosted the state’s most prolific events in the PGA Championship in both 2012 and 2021, and the 1991 Ryder Cup.

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