VILLAGE OF PINEHURST, N.C. – It’s still roughly eight months until the historic back-to-back U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open next June at the Pinehurst Resort & Country Club.
The anticipation is already building. Almost every person I played golf with last week during a tour of area courses had already bought tickets or signed up to volunteer.
'Everywhere you go, people are talking about it,' said Pinehurst member Dave Eskie, who bought tickets. 'It’s really exciting. I look forward to seeing (an Open) for the first time. The whole area is alive. The whole area is abuzz.'
The Putter Boy Shop in the village and the pro shop at the main Pinehurst clubhouse are already stocked with U.S. Open merchandise.
To Caleb Miles, the president and CEO of the Convention & Visitors Bureau for the Pinehurst, Southern Pines and Aberdeen Area, this could turn out to be a once-in-a-lifetime, two-week-long TV commercial promoting the region. He listed a several reasons why he’s excited:
- The logistics of running back-to-back opens has piqued interest. 'Hardcore golfers want to know how they (the USGA) will pull it off,' Miles said.
- The constant media coverage over two weeks.
- The new look of the restored Pinehurst No. 2.
Toss in Phil Mickelson’s dramatic pursuit of a U.S. Open Championship to complete the career Grand Slam – and his near-miss at Pinehurst in 1999 – and you’ve got some scintillating storylines to follow.
'It is the perfect collision of stories. It will be the strongest buildup to an Open in a long time,' Miles said.