I had the freaking best time this past weekend at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. It’s a PGA golf tournament, and I chose an awesome year for my first time out–my favorite pro golfer, Rickie Fowler, was playing. He was decked out in head-to-toe bright green glory on Saturday when I went, and the 22-year-old had one of the best days out of all the golfers in the tournament that day.
I only got into playing golf around the past year and a half, and it was so amazing to be able to walk the course with professional golfers throughout the day. I basically just followed Fowler and his threesome, and I wasn’t alone–like Phil Mickelson, he had a huge following of fans who cheered for him along the way (including me!)
This was my first time watching a live golf competition at all, so I really had no idea what to expect. I thought I’d be stuck behind masses of people at one hole just trying to get a glimpse of people hitting. Instead, it was fairly easy to walk alongside whomever you were following and see all their shots. It was so much fun to be that close to such awesome players, and Fowler didn’t disappoint with his playing, finishing off the day tied for fifth place out of dozens of competitors.
Saturday was also “green day”, where athletes and fans were encouraged to don green fashions on the course. I was surprised to see so many ladies in high heels, but they weren’t really the ones walking, anyway. The fashions I saw were really cool, including brightly patterned golf pants and preppy argyle sweaters. The crowd was almost as fun to watch as the players!
If you’re not really a golf fan, the WMPO would still be a blast to attend. There are lots of food and drink areas and plenty of seats around the course so you can just take in the madness and party. This was also my first year checking out the Birds Nest, the after-party spot of the WMPO. Thursday night, I saw O.A.R., which jammed out Dave Matthews Band-style. I’m not really a huge fan of their music, but the members played enthusiastically and made for a fun show.
Back on the course, for fans of the actual sport, there are huge screens on the holes making it easy to keep track of standings and find your favorite players. It’s a great opportunity to get up-close-and-personal with professional athletes, and following around Fowler was almost as fun as actually playing. Hopefully he’ll be back next year, and I can’t wait to see what he wears!