In an unprecedented announcement, the USGA has awarded 13 championships to Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, beginning with the U.S. Junior Amateur in 2022. The relationship will begin with that championship and run through the 2045 U.S. Junior Amateur and U.S. Girls’ Junior Championships.
Bandon Dunes will host the U.S. Women’s Amateur and U.S. Amateur in 2032 and 2041, marking the first time those two original USGA championships will be contested at the same host venue in the same calendar year. It remains to be determined if those championships will be played back-to-back or concurrently.
The resort will also host the U.S. Junior Amateur and U.S. Girls’ Junior in 2045, which will be the fourth time those championships will be conducted at the same facility in the same year. The agreement also includes the 2029 Walker Cup Match and the 2038 Curtis Cup Match.
Bandon Dunes Golf Resort opened in 1999 when its namesake first course made its debut. Over the next 20-plus years, four more 18-hole courses were created, as well as a 13-hole short course called The Preserve.
The USGA and Bandon Dunes are not strangers. The Curtis Cup was the first USGA event played at the resort, in 2006. Six more USGA championships have been played at the resort, most recently the 2020 U.S. Amateur Championship.
The 2022 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship will be the first U.S. Junior Amateur and eighth USGA championship hosted by the resort, which will make Bandon Dunes the first site to host eight different USGA championships.
“With five championship-caliber courses and incredible support from the resort’s ownership, Bandon Dunes is the perfect location for these USGA championships,” said John Bodenhamer, USGA senior managing director of championships. “(Bandon Dunes owner) Mike Keiser has been an incredible advocate for amateur golf and his ongoing support for the USGA and our mission served as the vision for this partnership. We are excited and honored to work together for years to come.”
Discussions leading to this agreement began last summer and started to come together when Bandon Dunes hosted the 2020 U.S. Amateur. The discussions were helped along by a special bond created by recently retired USGA CEO Mike Davis and Keiser. Over the years, Keiser had said that he’d love to host one USGA amateur championship each year. While that is not practical for numerous reasons, this agreement can be traced on a straight line to Keiser’s wish.
“I love amateur golf. What the USGA does for amateur golf and to grow the game is exceptional,” Keiser said “I built Bandon Dunes for all amateurs to enjoy the great experiences and spirited competition that golf provides, and we are thrilled to be hosting the USGA’s signature amateur championships for years to come.
“We are particularly grateful to Mike Davis, who has been an advocate for Bandon Dunes since the resort’s earliest days. Amateur golf will always have a place at Bandon Dunes, and this commitment from the USGA is significant. We are welcoming of all the great championships that the USGA will bring to the resort as Bandon Dunes is the home of amateur golf.”
“I built Bandon Dunes for all amateurs to enjoy the great experiences and spirited competition that golf provides, and we are thrilled to be hosting the USGA’s signature amateur championships for years to come.” – Mike Keiser
Keiser’s generosity in golf knows no bounds. Just one of many examples involves the USGA. When the resort hosted the men’s and women’s Public Links Championships concurrently in 2011, he spoke at the players‘ dinner on the eve of the competition and unexpectedly invited all contestants to stay as long as they wished and enjoy as much golf as they wanted, at no additional cost.
This partnership serves as further proof that in just two decades, Bandon Dunes has emerged as one the great golf destinations anywhere on the planet. And it serves as re-affirmation of the brilliance of Keiser’s vision at Bandon Dunes and his dogged persistence to see it through.
And finally, this agreement firmly places Keiser in the pantheon of important and influential figures in the history of the American amateur game, for men and women, for elite and recreational players alike.
USGA contributed to this report
Top Photo: David Cannon, Getty Images
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