How is it possible? A golf tournament in Connecticut which is the second most attended PGA Tour event on its annual calendar. Afterall, professional tennis finally closed its doors in 2019 in New Haven.
But the Travelers at the TPC River Highlands course thrives beyond imagination.
In 2002,the event drew a staggering 400000 fans and in 2011,240000, including 70000 on Sunday.
There are a number of reasons for this tremendous success story,but most start and end with the names Nathan Grube,Andy Bessette and hosts and hosts of Hartford area volunteers.
Grube and Bessette,a former Olympian are tireless workers for an event which takes over 300 days a year to plan.
One of the biggest reasons for the numerous volunteers is the widely held knowledge that over 40 million has been donated to local charities since the inception of the event.
Arnold Palmer won his first American event in 1956 at the Insurance City Open,a predecessor to the Travelers.Ironically, his grandson Sam Saunders in in this year’s event, not far from the top of the leaderboard.
One would think that the field would be watered down a scant few days after the epic US Open,this year played at Pebble Beach. Nope. Even Phil Mickelson,a California denizen made the trek by private jet to play the challenging par 70 course. He didn’t make the minus-2 cut this year. Neither did PGA star, Jordan Spieth who is suffering putting woes.
Zach Sucher leads the event at minus 11, followed closely by New England’s own, Keegan Bradley.