Playing amid coronavirus: these tournaments are ON in March
UPDATE: One day before the tournament was to be played, the Oro Valley Amateur was cancelled.
Like the rest of life, the growing coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has completely altered the amateur golf landscape. The USGA has cancelled championships, the Masters is postponed, and amateur golf tournaments from the majors
to state championships to city amateurs to club events have been cancelled or postponed.
Related: List of amateur tournaments affected by the coronavirus outbreak
But for a few tournaments, the show is going on. Here are the events that will be played as scheduled this March, and some of the precautions organizers and players are taking to stay safe but still get their competitive fix during this chaotic time.
The Florida Azalea Amateur
will be played at Palatka (Fla.) Golf Club on March 20-22. From the club website, here are the precautions being taken to conduct the tournament safely:
"All scores will be posted on www.Palatkagolfclub.com. We will not have a public scoring area this year to avoid a large gathering of people. Score cards will be signed and dropped in a box after your round. Players will be contacted by phone with any scoring issues.
We will not have a registration table this year. Players rule sheets, scorecards, pin sheets, and tee gifts will be placed in carts. Carts will be spread out to keep players a safe distance away from each other. All carts will be sanitized before each round for the protection of our players.
Lunch each day will be served outside and packaged to take with you on the course as you pass by the clubhouse. This will help us limit the food area to your foursome, making It safer for all players. Breakfast will be available outside each morning to take with you on the course.
Our clubhouse will be opened and sanitized constantly if you need to go inside. We will be limiting the clubhouse to no more than 30 guests at a time to insure everyone has plenty of room.
Players will be able to remain outside in open areas at all times during the event. Players at no time will be required to go inside for registration, scoring, or food. At no point will players be required to be in crowded areas."
The Oro Valley Amateur
will be played March 21-22 at The Views Golf Club in Oro Valley, Arizona. The efforts to keep golf safe include (i) No shotgun starts, (ii)
An increase in both the frequency and level of cleaning and disinfecting of all club facilities, and (iii) Detailed cleaning of golf carts, including a disinfecting product.
In addition, players are reminded:
- Wash your hands frequently
- Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth
- Don’t share food or drinks
- Stay at least 3 feet away from anyone who is coughing or sneezing
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow
The St. Pat's Invitational
will be played March 20-22 at Inverness (Fla.) Golf & Country Club, with the tournament dinner cancelled and box lunches provided to players.
The Granite Bay Four-Ball
, a 36-hole one-day event, will be played on March 23 at Granite Bay (Calif.) Golf Club, which is especially noteworthy given some of the more aggressive measures currently being taken in California, including a "shelter in place" order in the Bay Area.
The Pacific Tech Two-Player Best-Ball
will be played March 21-22 at Three Rivers Golf Course in Kelso, Wash.
Other upcoming events
As the time of this writing, the following March tournaments are still on the schedule: the Southwick Two-Man Invitational
, the Mountain Madness Golf Tournament
, and the Kennedy Dekle Four-Ball Championship
The Mountain Madness was not held due to course closure, and the Kennedy Dekle was postponed.
AmateurGolf.com is in constant communication with tournament directors and state golf associations across the country to bring you the latest announcements and changes to upcoming events. This is a fluid situation and information is flowing in fast, and we will do our best to keep you informed.