SPRINGFIELD, N.J. – As the clock ticked with each passing day, Ryder Cup 2016 officials visited the PGA Championship in New Jersey this week as they make advance preparations for their big week two months away.
Many of the grandstands that line Baltusrol Golf Club’s fairways and surround its greens this week are headed to Hazeltine National Golf Club when the 98th PGA Championship ends Sunday. So, too, will many of the leaderboards, power sources and food-service equipment, as well as ropes and stakes. Much of the tenting for the Ryder Cup’s corporate villages already is going up or soon will do so.
Ryder Cup tournament director Jeff Hintz is visiting for three days of meetings, with vendors and caterers on everything from menus, video-board content and media-center layout to lining up golfers for a nine-hole international celebrity event on the Tuesday that week.
Bill Murray, Justin Timberlake, Michael Phelps and George Lopez were among the celebrities who played at the 2012 Ryder Cup event at Medinah Country Club in Chicago.
Two members of Hazeltine National’s executive committee visited this week, as well.
“It’s just a good time to be here and see everybody who’s going to be a part of what we do up in Minnesota,” Hintz said. “It’s another touch point, a chance to finish up some loose ends.”
The three-day Ryder Cup will be Sept. 30-Oct. 1. The U.S. and European teams arrive Monday, practice rounds are Tuesday and Wednesday, and opening ceremonies are Thursday before the first ball is struck early Friday. A past captains’ match also is scheduled.
General public tickets sold out last year in a lottery. The PGA of America has partnered with PrimeSport as its official secondary-market ticket exchange. Single-day premium tickets — ranging from $700 for Tuesday’s practice round to $1,800 for competition days — remain.