RBC Heritage expects record crowds this year

Published: Feb. 27, 2023 at 3:49 PM EST
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HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WTOC) - Now that the PGA has made the RBC Heritage golf tournament one of their designated events, a significant number of golf’s top players will be competing this year.

With bigger names, tournament organizers are expecting bigger crowds.

Preparations are underway at Harbour Town Golf Links, where RBC Heritage organizers are expecting a record number of spectators to gather in about six weeks.

“We’re designated, but we want the experience to be elevated in a way that people are gonna go, ‘I want to go back,’” RBC Heritage Tournament Director Steve Wilmot said.

That means offering comfortable amenities to all those that will be hanging out on the links, many of whom may be there for an entire week.

“Parking, bathrooms access, food and beverage access. All those areas are being thought through in a very comprehensive manner,” Sea Pines Resort Director of Sports Operations, John Farrell said.

Spectator stands and different tents are already in the process of being built around the course. The course is still open for play now, but the week before the tournament, it’ll close down for final preparations.

“The inaugural Heritage, there was still paint wet on some of the buildings around here. There have been some years where there’s been play on the front nine and we’ve been finishing on the back nine, but as of late, the last number of years, we’re ready in advance week. Usually Masters week,” Farrell said.

It’s not just the course that’s preparing for an influx of people.

The Town of Hilton Head Island is used to hosting tourists, but in preparation for the tournament, they’ll be taking extra measures.

“We’re sprucing up the areas. We’re making sure the medians are cleaner, just giving it a spring cleaning, so to say. Making certain that it represents, well, when the tourists come into Hilton Head for the tournament, that it represents the same thing that Sea Pines is trying to represent as well, and that is class and excellence,” Hilton Head Mayor Alan Perry said.

There’s still work to be done, but organizers say they’re all working toward making this year’s Heritage the event of a lifetime.

“Don’t miss this Heritage. This is going to be a real celebration of the game, of the island, of the State. It’s going to be a wonderful thing to be part of, and you’re going to look back on it and say, ‘I was there when this happened,’” Fuller said.

The RBC Heritage Tournament kicks off on April 10, and of course, that is the week right after the Masters.