As a journalist, I’ve had the pleasure of beginning my career young as a 12 year old with an NBA team. Since then, I’ve covered political functions involving Nelson Mandela and his family and even hobnobbed courtside at Barclays Center with Rihanna. However, nothing takes the cake better than being on the scene at a PGA golf tournament.
My first experience with PGA began last while hosting a radio show with CBS I chatted with Zach Johnson. He and I talked about him winning The Masters in 2007, his first major championship where his 289 (+1) tied for the highest winning score ever. “The Masters there was kind of a shock,” Johnson told me.
“Because it was probably my third or fourth year on tour. At that point I had only won one tournament; it wasn’t like I was supposed to win, so there was a lot of shock.”
Johnson also clued me in on what the experience was like to rent out a mansion with fellow PGA’ers Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, Justin Thomas, Jimmy Walker and Jason Dufner at the 145th British Open in Scotland. It was a bromance filled with brisket tacos, movie nights and golfing from the porch.
It was a flashback to Puff Daddy’s Bad Boys For Life Video where Puff did whatever the heck he wanted to do: played basketball, rode a motorized scooter in the town of Perfect Town, USA and even shot a hole of golf or two off the roof of his sprawling mansion.
Fast Forward to the 2:37 mark and you will see why
Ben Stiller wasn’t feeling it though!! Puff Daddy may have broke a window or two…or three, or four! But hey, who’s counting!
Golf has always been the in thing. The pleated pants, the Titleist golf balls, going top speed in a golf cart AND HEY….Grey Goose vodka and Fuku Chicken are hits. In between setting up shop for my uncle’s 50th birthday party slash Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor fight party, I stopped by Long Island to attend Glen Oaks Country Club to attend Northern Trust’s PGA Golf Tournament. The Northern Trust is the first of four events in the PGA Tour’s FedExCup Playoffs.
The stars were out and about: Good Morning America’s Michael Strahan, Paulina Gretzky, daughter of hockey great, Wayne Gretzky and girlfriend to PGA golfer Dustin Johnson were in attendance. That fit with the theme of this year too. PGA went with a different strategy this year. The PGA Tour is keying in on a fans-first strategy coupled with elements like food and fashion.
That said, as a social media influencer and brand ambassador myself, I was impressed with PGA’s mission to incorporate social media in their draw this year. In years past, patrons on country clubs were not allowed to film intricate portions of golf in play. Well, that changed this year!
Additionally, the growing female fan base was catered too! There was tons of wine, Grey Goose and conversation to be had! Respectfully with a hint of joking for referencing purposes, Mitt Romney’s Pay Equity and binders full of women reference would have been spot on at this event!
But I digress!
Millennial women have becoming a focal point for the PGA. They’re looking for more social and fun and they found it. There were young ladies that were alums from Villanova, nearby Hofstra University and Boston College in attendance. Honestly, if women are supporting an event and in attendance, everybody is happy.
The sunlight and the clear skies were perfect for the photo-op!
Even better? Dustin Johnson got the win! Johnson defeated Jordan Spieth in a playoff to win The Northern Trust 2017. Johnson earned his fourth victory of the season, and 16th career, on the PGA Tour. With the victory, he earned the $8.75 million purse.
Spieth led by three shots entering the final round. Spieth carded 12-under through 54 holes, Johnson was in second place and four players were tied for third at 7-under.
I’m genuinely looking forward to next year.