Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

April 30, 2013

Tournament draws largest crowds ever

South Georgia Classic a boon to local economy

VALDOSTA — In its seventh year, the South Georgia Classic surged ahead of last year’s attendance numbers, drawing around 25 percent more spectators than 2012.

Official numbers aren’t yet tallied for the PGA Web.com tour event, held at Kinderlou Forest Golf Club April 25-28, but preliminary counts show a surge in spectators and visitors for the event.

“We’re estimating in the neighborhood of 12-13,000 visitors for the week,” Tournament Manager Joerdan Simpson said. “There were definitely more folks out there this week.”

Simpson said, weather-wise, “We couldn’t have asked for a better week.”

And when asked if having professional golfer and two-time majors champion John Daly playing had any part in the increased attendance, Simpson said, “Having Daly here definitely helped to create a buzz about the tournament. We also think people are finally getting more interested in the Classic.”

Tim Riddle of the Valdosta-Lowndes County Conference Center and Tourism Authority noted that when he was at the tournament on Friday, “Everybody walking around knew exactly where Daly was. He was a big draw for the event for sure.”

According to Riddle, anytime an event brings a national spotlight to the community, it’s a good thing.

“It shows that Valdosta can handle a PGA Tour event, which is huge. It helps for future business relocation and economic development, and gets our name into other circles. People say, ‘If Valdosta can handle that, maybe they’re a good place to locate,’” Riddle said.

Although tourists driving through the area reported difficulty finding a hotel room this weekend, The Times couldn’t find any hoteliers willing to comment on the record Monday.

However, Riddle said even hearing the name Valdosta associated with the tournament will have spill-over effect and bring in more people, even if it’s just to stop overnight.

Sponsored by First State Trust & Bank, the South Georgia Classic has been estimated to bring in $3 million to $4 million during the course of a week to the local economy. In addition, a number of area charities sold tickets to the event and benefitted from the proceeds.

Simpson said it will be a couple of weeks before all of the final numbers are in, but the Classic is considered the largest single-event economic generator in the community.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Clay Griner.jpeg Griner wins Lowndes commission runoff

    A long nine-week runoff election between Clay Griner and G. Norman Bennett came to an end Tuesday night with Griner beating Bennett by 1,060 votes, with approximately 70 provisional ballots left to count.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20140722-Runoff_Voting003.jpg State Senate District 8 too close to call

    The race for State Senate District 8 appeared too close to call as of The Times print deadline late Tuesday night.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Senate Georgia_Stew.jpg Perdue defeats Kingston in Georgia Senate runoff

    Businessman David Perdue has defeated longtime Rep. Jack Kingston in the Republican runoff for Georgia’s U.S. Senate nomination, setting up a matchup against Democratic nominee Michelle Nunn that will help determine which party controls the Senate for the final years of the Obama administration.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • County OKs $1.6 million for water-treatment equipment

    By a divided vote, the Lowndes County Commission approved spending $1,638,000 to purchase two pieces of equipment to improve the county’s water quality as per an agreement with the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

    July 23, 2014

  • Baytree Animal Hospital LB copy.JPG Animal hospital named Business of the Week

    Baytree Animal Hospital was named Leading Business of the Week by the  Valdosta-Lowndes Chamber of Commerce for July 14.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gavel-courtroom.jpg Water treatment plant discussed

    The Lowndes County Board of Commissioners discussed purchasing two pieces of equipment for the Alapaha Water Treatment Plant and the Spring Creek System for a total of $1,638,000 during its Monday work session and is expected to vote on the issue tonight.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • education.jpg Charter school petition denied

    Both the Valdosta City and Lowndes County school boards unanimously denied the joint charter petition from Scintilla Charter Academy during their respective meetings Monday evening.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • echols_alapapa.jpg WWALS gets grant from river network

    The Willacoochee, Withlacoochee, Alapaha, and Little River Systems Watershed Coalition, Inc. (WWALS) received a $500 Alapaha Water Trail Grant from the Georgia River Network

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140718-ARJim2.jpg Teacher at home anywhere in the world

    Variety is the spice of life. South Georgia is home to a diverse group of people, each with a unique life story. One man with glorious tales of travel and selfless volunteer work is Jim Kokoruda.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • fire2a.jpg Blaze damages North Lowndes home

    Lowndes County Fire Rescue responded to a fire call Sunday at 3756 Cross Creek Circle near Bemiss Road.

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos

Top News
Poll

School starts again in about two weeks. What do you think?

It's still summer. School starts too soon.
Seems like the right time to return.
Abolish summer recess. Make school year-round.
     View Results