HOUSTON, TX - In a press conference this morning in the Museum Room at Memorial Park, the Astros Golf Foundation unveiled new logos and branding and officially announced that the 2019 Houston Open will be held October 7-13 at the Golf Club of Houston.
Astros Owner and Chairman Jim Crane and Giles Kibbe (President, Astros Golf Foundation) were joined at the press conference by Andy Pazder (Executive VP, PGA Tour), Greg Nielson (Regional Director, Escalante Golf), Steve Wright (Director, Houston Parks/Recreation), Colby Callaway (Houston Open Tournament Director) and Tom Doak (Memorial Park Golf Course Architect).
Houston was in jeopardy of losing the Houston Open, which began in 1946, before Crane successfully spearheaded efforts to not only keep the tournament in Houston, but to also make it better. The tournament will be primarily underwritten by the Astros Foundation, per an agreement between the Foundation and the PGA Tour. The agreement is for five years (2019-23).
“Our goal is to work hard and establish a first-class tournament that one day will be considered one of the best on Tour,” Crane commented. “This tournament will benefit the City of Houston in many ways, creating revenue for the business community as well as generating significant dollars each year for the Houston Parks and Recreation Department and for the First Tee of Greater Houston. We appreciate the great support that we have received from so many for this tournament, including Mayor Sylvester Turner, City Council, the PGA Tour, Escalante Golf and the Memorial Park Conservancy.”
The Astros Golf Foundation will make minimum donations each year of $1.0 million to the Houston Parks and Recreation Department and $500,000 to the First Tee of Greater Houston, a non-profit organization that encourages youth to be active with the game of golf, via the PGA Tour. All other net proceeds will be distributed throughout the Houston community by the Astros Foundation.
THE NEW HOUSTON OPEN
The 2019 Houston Open will be held at the Golf Club of Houston, October 7-13, before moving permanently to the renovated Memorial Park Golf Course in 2020. “The Houston Open will have a new look and a new feel,” Callaway said. “In addition to featuring an attractive field of golfers, we will also be adding some new elements for our spectators, including musical entertainment and a tailgate zone. “And, the Houston Open will have a purse ($7.5M) that will make it the premier fall event on the PGA TOUR in the U.S.A.” Championship play for the tournament will begin on Thursday, October 10 and will culminate with the awarding of the championship trophy on Sunday, October 13. Pro-Am events and a Junior Golf event will be scheduled for the days (Mon.-Wed.) leading up to Thursday’s first round. For more information on the 2019 Houston Open, contact [email protected] Regular updates on the Houston Open can also be found via social media on Instagram Twitter, Facebook and SnapChat using @HouOpenGolf. The HoustonOpenGolf.com website will be launched at a later date.
STAR-STUDDED TEAM TO OVERSEE MEMORIAL PARK RENOVATION
Renowned golf course architect Tom Doak is overseeing the renovations and improvements to the Memorial Park Golf Course, which began January 10th, one day after City Council approved the project. Doak has designed several of the top golf courses in the country and around the globe. His lead consultant is Brooks Koepka, who is the reigning U.S. Open and PGA Champion, the 2017 U.S. Open Champion and began the 2019 season as the No. 1 ranked player in the world. The goal for the renovation will be to not only make it one of the best courses on the PGA Tour, but to also make it one of the most attractive courses in the nation. “Our commitment is to improve the course, provide the City with storm water retention, and also ensure the course is maintained for all Houstonians to enjoy affordable golf at a PGA-caliber facility,” Kibbe said. “It will be a great addition to the City’s iconic park.”
NEW BRANDING UNVEILED
The logos and branding for the new Houston Open were also unveiled on Wednesday morning. The launch of the new Astros Golf Foundation and the Houston Open branding represents the official launch of the next generation of the Houston Open.“Our new brand reflects our desire to get a new generation excited about golf in Houston,” Kibbe stated. “We want the tournament to bring together all walks of life for a great social experience, while watching the best athletes compete at an elite level. It is bright, bold and it reflects the values of the tournament – integrity, collaboration, passion, authenticity and fun.”