For Immediate Release
February 8, 2011
FRENCH LICK RESORT WILL LINK PAST TO FUTURE BY
HOSTING THE UNITED STATE HICKORY OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP
French Lick, Indiana– Being transported back to the golden age of golf will be more than a fantasy this July at French Lick Resort in southern Indiana. This historic resort, one of the premier golf resort destinations in America, will link the past to the future by hosting the Fourth Annual United States Hickory Open Championship July 11-13, 2011.
The Hickory Open, which is run by the Society of Hickory Golfers, will be held on the resorts historic Donald Ross course. Golfers will be transported back in time to a day when the game was first brought to America in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s including the era when the Donald Ross course was created at French Lick Resort in 1917.
“We are very excited and honored to host such a historic type event at our Donald Ross Course, said Dave Harner, French Lick Resort’s director of golf. “The gathering of these like-minded golf historians will surely be impressed with the historic combination of a great Donald Ross Course together with the French Lick Springs Hotel. Players will enjoy a golf event surrounded by history and beauty, the way the game was meant to be played. ”
Between 70 and 100 golfers from around the country and world are expected to compete in a two-day 36-hole event using historic hickory-shafted clubs. Golfers at the Hickory Open are also encouraged to look the part, with knickers, plus fours, dress shirts and ties straight from the 19th century. Together with old-fashioned hickory-shafted golf clubs, this event will truly be like going back in time.
French Lick Resort, situated among the rolling hills of the Hoosier National Forest, is the perfect site for such a historic event. Since the early 1900’s, golf has been an integral part of this resort area. Tom Bendelow designed the first course here in 1907 followed by the great Donald Ross ten years later.
The historic Donald Ross course underwent a recent $4.6 million restoration project that has brought the course back to Ross’s original plans. The Ross course brings a rich history to the French Lick Resort. The course was site of the 1924 PGA Championship won by the legendary Walter Hagen and hosted other golf greats and celebrities such as Gene Sarazen, Chick Evans, and Bing Crosby.
The Ross course is a parkland gem, which meanders up and down the rolling hills making it a perfect fit for a Hickory Open. The wonderful routing of the holes take full advantage of the many elevation points for classic Ross green sites, which are sloped heavily from back to front.
French Lick Resort is a $500 million historic restoration and casino development project set upon3,000 acres of scenic grounds. It encompasses both the French Lick Springs Hotel and the West Baden Springs Hotel, located about a mile apart, which have both been fully restored to their original sophistication and luxury. The casino was built adjacent to the French Lick hotel and opened in 2008. The West Baden Springs property, with its massive dome, re-opened as a hotel for the first time since 1932. The hotels combine for 689 rooms and free shuttle buses connect all amenities.
There are also two destination spas with a 36 treatment rooms (they continue to offer the Pluto Mineral Springs bath), over 51,000 square feet of gaming space, 115,000 square feet of meeting space and a variety of dining and entertainment options. French Lick Resort is truly a world-class golf resort destination and expected to attract golfers from all over the country.
For more information about the United States Hickory Open, visit www.ushickoryopen.org.
For more information about French Lick Resort, visit www.frenchlick.com.