The tour said Wednesday it would play the 54-hole event this weekend, despite the fact that the PGA Tour had canceled all four of its tournaments this week in wake of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, D.C.
Thursday, LPGA commissioner Ty Votaw released a statement saying: 'After further discussion with our players, tournament organizers and sponsors, as well as the continuing aftermath of the tragedies this week, it became increasingly clear that the most appropriate course of action was to cancel the tournament this weekend.
We delayed making this final decision until we had thoroughly evaluated this issue from all sides. Unlike many other sports, the majority of the players for the Safeway Classic were already in Portland or en route by Tuesday morning. So, the question did not involve getting players to the site.
We also were urged by the governmental officials in the area to continue to hold the event as a sign that life is slowly returning to some semblance of normality. We also know how important the monies raised through the event are to the local charities. However, in the end, we have to follow our hearts and minds, and we believe not playing this weekend is the right decision for the LPGA.'
Lyle Waterman, division president of Safeway, the tournament sponsor, said: 'Safeway and the tournament join the LPGA in sending our thoughts and prayers to the families and victims of Tuesday's horrific events. As the events of the week have unfolded, we agree with the LPGA that the right course of action is to cancel this year's event out of respect and to honor those involved.'
In observance of President George W. Bush's National Day of Prayer and Remembrance, a prayer service will be held at 11 a.m. PT Friday for the players, caddies, tournament organizers, volunteers and LPGA fans at the 18th green at Columbia Edgewater Country Club in Portland.