• Ben Tierney

Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational wins 2019 LPGA Tournament of the Year award

The LPGA Tournament Partners recently selected the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational as 2019 Tournament of the Year. The honor recognizes the LPGA event that “stands out among all tournaments as truly exceptional.”

The Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational also received the Gold Driver award for Best Social Media Campaign as well as runner-up honors for Best Foodie Experience and the LPGA Spirit Award, which is awarded to the tournament that best exemplifies the values of the LPGA and helps to grow the game of golf.

The annual Gold Driver Awards were hosted November 20 during the LPGA’s season-ending CME Group Tour Championship in Naples, Florida. Emceeing the event were Golf Channel hosts Karen Stupples and Jerry Foltz.

“We are so honored to be recognized by the LPGA, and to receive this award in our first year is unbelievable,” said Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational executive director Chris Chandler. “It’s a testament to the hard work of our team and how much the Great Lakes Bay Region really welcomed this tournament with open arms. We want to thank everyone in our community who was a part of the event and we look forward to continuing to build this tournament together for years to come.”

Golden Driver Awards are voted on by a panel of three independent judges representing the LPGA Tour. A point system based on ten separate categories is used to help choose award winners among 33 LPGA Tour events. Officials believe the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational is the first tournament to ever receive Tournament of the Year honors in the inaugural year.

“The tournament managed to maintain a focus on world-class golf while providing several other entertainment and educational experiences for visitors and competitors alike,” said Scott Ensign, LPGA senior director of tournament business development. “They really knocked it out of the park in their first year – we’re excited to see this tournament continue to grow.”

The Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational attracted more than 35,000 visitors to the Great Lakes Bay Region and Midland Country Club. Over 30 supplementary events were planned along with the tournament, including the Eat Great Food Festival, the LPGA Leadership Academy, the First Tee program introducing more than 5,500 school-age children to the game of golf, a hands-on STEM education center, free tickets and a private dining area for active duty and veteran military members, and more.

Jasmine Suwannapura and Cydney Clanton carried a five-stroke lead to the final round of the inaugural Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational, extending it to six strokes to post a runaway win at -27 in the LPGA Tour’s first official team event.

The 2020 Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational will take place July 13 to 18 at the Midland Country Club in Midland, Michigan.

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