Golf is more than a game in South Carolina, and some facts and figures on display during the state's Golf Week celebration emphasize its impact.
In the latest data gleaned from industry sources and state-wide surveys from 2007 golf's impact exceeds $2.7 billion annually.
Golf provides more than 33,000 jobs, more than $834 million in personal income and generates more than $276 million in federal state and local taxes. In addition, green fees and club membership dues bring another $12 million-plus into the state's coffers through admission taxes. Golf-related visitors spend an estimated $1.2 billion annually. The figure includes lodging, food and other retail sales.
"Golf Week" is celebrated each April, beginning on the Sunday of the final round of the PGA Tour's Heritage Classic.
The South Carolina Golf Association presented its Club of the Year award to Colleton River Plantation in Bluffton. Colleton River's two courses - the Nicklaus, which opened in 1993, and the Dye, which opened in 1999 - both were recognized by Golf Digest as that year's best new private course in the United States.
Rivalry on grass. Can't get enough of the Carolina-Clemson rivalry? The latest chapter will unfold Tuesday in the Chick-Fil-A Challenge at Reynolds Plantation near Greensboro, Ga. USC coach Steve Spurrier and former receiver Sterling Sharpe will represent the Gamecocks against coach Dabo Swinney and former receiver Dwight Clark for the Tigers.
Coaches and former athletes from 12 schools will participate and all will share in the $400,000 scholarship purse. The winning team in the two-player best-ball format earns $120,000 for its school's scholarship fund. Spurrier and Sharpe have won the past two titles.
Hole-in-One Shootout. The Long's Drugs Million Dollar Hole-in-One Shootout, benefitting the Babcock Center Foundation, is Thursday -Sunday at Northwoods Golf Club's driving range. The Shootout is from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, with the finals set for Sunday night.
Qualifiers for the finals will take aim at holes worth thousands of dollars in cash prizes or the grand prize worth $1 million. Proceeds benefit the Babcock Center Foundation, which serves men and women in the Midlands with mental retardation, autism, head and spinal cord injuries and related disabilities.
For information, reach Carrie J. Deaton at (803) 799-1970, ext. 167.
Tournament results. The Northwoods Golf Club team of Mims Liner (71), Chris Mitchell (73) and Jason Grimes (70) won the SCGA's Trescott Cup at the Golf Club at Star Fort in Ninety Six.
In the pro-am competition that featured teams composed of three amateurs and their club pro, Spring Valley, the Country Club of Lexington and Sunset Country Club tied for first at 132. The best two gross balls per hole counted. Pro Luke Fancher joined Brent Roof, Darren Foy and Jesse Smith for Spring Valley. Pro Will Branham teamed with Jeff Burkett, Allen Dooley and Todd Stilwell for Lexington. Pro Jeff Ruth and Scott Glaze, Lee Glaze and Brian Bland represented Sunset. ...
Multi-time Columbia city champion Steve Liebler won his first individual Carolinas Golf Association title by taking the CGA's Mid-Amateur championship at the Furman University course. He posted scores of 71-76-69-216. ...
Austin Langdale of Townville shot a two-round total of 143 to win the boys 16-19 division in the Hurricane Junior Tour's Upstate Classic at Anderson's Cobbs Glen Golf Club. Columbia's Zack Casto and Lugoff's Cory Spaulding shared second at 148.
Junior event upcoming. The 36th Southern Cross Sertoma tourney will be Friday-Saturday at Aiken's Palmetto Golf Club. Twenty-three high school teams from South Carolina and six individuals will compete.
TODAY: SCGA One-Day, CC of Lexington. Contact: SCGA, (803)732-9311
THURSDAY: SCGA Senior One-Day, CC of Newberry. Contact: SCGA, (803)732-9311
SATURDAY-MAY 2: CGA Vicki DiSantis Junior Girls' Championship, Pine Island CC, Charlotte. Contact: CGA, (910) 673-1000
MAY 2: SCGA One-Day, Lakeside CC, Laurens. Contact: SCGA, (803)732-9311
MAY 3: SCGA 40-Plus Tournament, CC of South Carolina, Florence. Contact: SCGA, (803)732-9311