Thats Joe Hardys motto. Hardy, who founded the 84 Lumber empire, undertook the enormous task of enticing the PGA Tour to stage an event in southern Pennsylvania. He built a course ' the impressive Nemacolin Woodlands Resort and Spa. And ' what do you know? ' the PGA Tour sniffed it out. Sure enough, the boys of swat are here.
The tour wanted a stable home for what was the Pennsylvania Classic, the forerunner of the 84 Lumber Classic. The Pennsylvania Classic was born in 2000, when it premiered at Waynesborough Country Club near Philadelphia. It moved to Laurel Valley Golf Club in Ligonier in 2001, then went back to Waynesborough last year.
But the event was about to go belly-up after last years event. It didnt have a permanent home, and the economic climate had caused the sponsors to pull out. That was the opening Hardy, who counts John Daly among his close friends, to step in. He offered a ready-made solution ' he would provide the venue (Nemocolin Woodlands) as well as his company as the title sponsor. Pete Dye designed the Mystic Rock course at Nemecolin.
'We started with 400 acres here and we have over 2,300 acres now,' Hardy told the nearby Uniontown Herald Standard. 'We just buy ground, then we figure out what to do with it. It makes you proud to have a PGA (Tour) event here, but it's an accomplishment for the whole region. We as a region have a lot to offer and now we can show the country what we have here.
'I've traveled all over the world, but I've never seen anything better than this.'
The tour is thrilled to have the event stabilized.
'From the standpoint of continuity, it's ideal to have one location,' said Wayne White, manager of business affairs for the PGA Tour. 'Just running a tournament to lining up volunteers to building that into a team to involving a community and keeping that community involved, one location year in and year out is superb.
And Hardy, for one, is rightfully amazed at what he and the people of Uniontown and southern Pennsylvania have accomplished in the tournaments first year here. This is when you arrive, he told the Herald Standard.
'Hopefully, this can make our whole region better,' he said. 'We have to look at this as a beginning, not an end. We'll get it off the ground this year, then come back and make it even better next year.
Dan Forsman was the champion last year at the SEI Pennsylvania Classic, the events forerunner. He fired a final-round 65, which boosted him ahead of Billy Andrade ' the third-round leader ' and Robert Allenby by one shot.