Pebble Beach Weather Strikes Again
Last year at this time, I was basking on the putting green at the famed Pebble Beach Golf Links during the AT&T Pebble Beach ProAm. 82 degrees and everyone was in light weight clothing and the girl watching was absolutely spectacular!
Alas, the same can not be said today. The tournament was moved to early February to avoid the heart of the rainy season, but after an unseasonably dry January (along with ALOT of very cold weather) the inevitable rain and fog is upon us. Tournament officials “hope” to match last years attendance of just under 150,000 people. They of course are dreaming. For immediate weather click Pebble Beach.
This can hardly be considered a “real” golf tournament but rather an extended Celebrity shootout, with some of the best former athletes, movie/tv stars and musicians who could beat most of your foursome on any given Sunday. But, the crowds are treated to an up close glimpse of some of their favorite stars.
Much is made of Tiger not making an appearance. I for one totally understand. Playing on a wet track, very bumpy greens, goofy playing partners and sometimes rowdy crowds (remember the guy that ran into his knee that later led to surgery?)all can mess with your routine and your confidence. Add 6 hour rounds, and yucky cold weather and yes, it is Pebble Beach, but why mess with your preparation for Augusta?
He will be back someday, oh say June 2010, the date of the next US OPEN. And, it is not to say, Tiger can’t get a tee time!
I have issues too with the whole AT&T management of the Tournament. Some years back the decision was made to reduce traffic on the grounds, that paid visitors are bussed in from CSUMB (CAL State University about 15 miles away) and also key locations in Carmel, Monterey and Pacific Grove. This was formerly a free service, however, a poster on a wall at a nearby flower shop revealed that this ride will now cost $10.00. Nice.
The issue with this process is that the vast majority of visitors are then schlepped back to the University, and might as well just go home rather than drive BACK into the Monterey Peninsula to dine and shop. As a result, many local venues have LOST money during the Tournament rather than benefit from the influx of visitors.
The merchandise tent is also revealing. We all want souvenirs from events we attend. It years past the mugs, towels, hats, T-shirts and other paraphernalia all had the Pebble Beach AT&T logo and the DATE of the tournament. No more. For the last five years or more, they simply drag out the same ol’ crap (undated) and put it on display. So, there is no way to differentiate from year to year, or winner to winner.
The advocates of the tournament point to it’s classy past with Bing Crosby and a few of his friends put on a tournament early in the year, to give the local community a boost. Parties, and easy fraternization was the order of the day. Today, it is a closed party of A Listers and private parties, and the paying public is forced to ride the “shame train” rather than hobnob, shoulder to shoulder with the rich and famous.
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