The Heritage golf tournament in beautiful Hilton Head Island, South Carolina has yet to announce a sponsor. Tournament, city and state officials have reached out to the PGA in an effort to help find a sponsor for their outstanding event. Verizon was the title sponsor since 1987, but pulled out of the event last year.
Perhaps it is time for the PGA to do something different and think outside the box to attract a title sponsor for this event. If anyone noticed, the ladies of the LPGA had a bye week in their schedule during the week of the Heritage tournament. If the PGA doesn't seem to be able to influence an organization to sponsor the event, perhaps a combined PGA-LPGA field could get a signature on the bottom line.
Co-ed events in sports should occur more often, especially in golf. Once within 150 yards of the flag, for example, an argument could be made that the men's distance or power advantage is negated and it becomes a game of skill. With the field confirmed, allow a computer to randomly generate the pairings based on the brand of golf ball they're sponsored to use.
A co-ed Heritage event would work because of the location. Hilton Head Island is one of the nation's premier vacation/relaxation destinations. Tourism and golf are large segments of its economy and it's perfect for families.
I recently drove from Jacksonville, Florida to Hilton Head Island, SC for my family's vacation and to celebrate a three-year anniversary. The "Boss" shopped at the city's two Tanger Outlets while I enjoyed a round of golf. Afterwards, our toddler enjoyed playing on the beach as he had his first experience with sand and the Atlantic Ocean.
It's a family-friendly environment and having a co-ed tournament would be a perfect addition. Hopefully, the golfing world will have some positive news regarding the Heritage soon. Until then, I hope everyone involved is taking advantage of an opportunity to think outside the box.