Today at Kiawah Island, ahead of the 103rd PGA Championship, the PGA of America made news regarding its other marquee event: the 2021 Ryder Cup.
After being canceled in 2020 due to COVID restrictions, PGA President Seth Waugh predicted that the rescheduled 2021 Ryder Cup, set for Sep. 24-26 at Whistling Straits (WI), would be a “full fan experience.”
“We have every hope and every desire and we’re working very hard to make it an absolute full fan experience,” said Waugh on Tuesday at Kiawah Island during a PGA Championship press conference.
“We’re working obviously with the state and local governments to have all those conversations.
“It’ll be fluid. But our plan is to have a Ryder Cup in a way – have it be the greatest Ryder Cup in history. I think the world as we’ve seen is ready to have a party.”
The attendance for this week’s PGA at the Ocean Course is capped at 10,000 spectators per day, but the PGA’s Kerry Haigh is hoping for much larger crowds this fall in Wisconsin.
“We are working with the county and the state of Wisconsin and have submitted our COVID protocol plan, which as Seth mentioned continues to change and evolve every day,” said Kerry Haigh, the PGA of America’s Chief Championships Officer.
“We’re hopeful that by September we will be able to have full attendance. If it were today, we could not, based on where COVID numbers are, but certainly with the vaccine and the numbers coming down, we are very hopeful and optimistic that we will be able to have a full attendance.”
Waugh added, “The Olympics is going to happen it looks like, but not in the way that you would hope it would.
“And so this is really going to be the first time to cheer for your country, to have that sort of tribal – in-person anyway – to have that sort of tribal atmosphere that is so important.
“We’re hopeful that September will be one of the great events in golf and a great sort of exclamation point to the end of this thing.
“We think it’s all going to happen fast from here, certainly from a U.S. perspective. I realize the world still has a lot of challenges out there, but from a U.S. perspective we’re really hopeful we’ll be able to pull it off.”