Phoenix Open Sets Another Attendance record

Despite inclement weather on key tournament days, the Phoenix Thunderbirds and the Waste Management Phoenix Open topped $100 million in total charitable giving.

The annual golf party topped its previous record attendance with 564,368 fans – the equivalent of seven Super Bowls – and almost 160,000 showed up in the gloom and drizzle on Saturday, more than attend a pair of Super Bowls. Early calculations project that the 2015 tournament will raise over $7 million for local charities.

“We take pride in how much we are able to donate to charity each and every year but reaching the $100 million mark and doing so in our 80th year is really special,” Thunderbirds Tournament Chair Danny Calihan said. “We have tremendous support from Waste Management, our corporate sponsors, and the community, and thanks to them we are able to help thousands of children and families in need.”

Earlier, there were hopes that the attendance could top 600,000 and more than 200,000 on Saturday when Tiger Woods announced he would attend this year’s greatest show on golf. Woods shot over 80 for the first time in his career in the preliminary rounds and didn’t make the cut.

The best-attended golf tournament in the world. this year’s Phoenix Open hosted celebrities attending the Super Bowl, playing the annual Pro-Am and a group of 70 CEOs at a reception with Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey. The latter group was here to see the Valley as a place to expand and relocate businesses.

At 80 years old, the Waste Management Phoenix Open is the fifth-oldest event on the PGA Tour. Tournament sponsorship was first put into play in 2003. Since then, the Thunderbirds have raised more than $75 million for charity.

From its 1932 inception through 2003, the tournament raised $25 million, $20 million of that amount coming between 1981 and 2003.

Source: Phoenix Business Journal

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