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The future of the Wegmans LPGA Championships

Posted at: 05/13/2013 3:52 PM
By: Robin De Wind

It's a first in the history of golf. Two major golf championships will be held in Rochester this summer.

The summer of 2013 will be a major deal, times two. The Wegmans LPGA Championship will be played at Locust Hill Country Club for the fourth consecutive year on June 3-9 with Wegmans as the primary sponsor.

Oak Hill Country Club will host the 95th PGA Championship from August 5-11. This marks the first time the LPGA Championship and a men's major will be hosted by the same community in the same year.

Up first, the LPGA Championship. On Monday, there was the annual luncheon to promote the event in three weeks. LPGA Tour pro Jessica Korda was on hand, talking to local school children.

The future of the Wegmans LPGA Championship hangs in the balance. The contract between Wegmans and the LPGA extends through this year and has been in question since last year. Wegmans has said the future of the tournament in Rochester may hinge on having additional sponsors step forward.

Korda says the fan support in Rochester is unmatched on tour.

Jessica Korda, LPGA Tour pro, said, “The people around here make it feel like a major and it is. The volunteers and everyone that makes this tournament possible makes it feel like a major. The people that watch, it is overwhelming the love you feel from them.”

Jerry Stahl, Tournament Co-Chairman, said, “I'm not sure whether we have a sponsor that could sponsor this event even as a tour stop, so I'm not sure what that would hold for the future of golf.”

The Wegmans LPGA Championship is set to begin June 3-9 with first round play beginning June 6. The struggle for the LPGA has been to grow this game in the United States. Events are now being held in China and in the 2016 Olympics, women's golf will be a medal event.