This article is part of The Pilot’s look back at the 10 biggest, non-coronavirus news stories of 2020.
The U.S. Golf Association and Pinehurst Resort and Country Club have long had a deep and fond relationship. That has manifested itself in a steady stream of USGA championships coming to Moore County over the years.
But on the Tuesday after Labor Day, the USGA moved that relationship a giant step forward and announced it would build a second headquarters in Pinehurst on resort grounds.
Plans call for the USGA to shift its research and testing center for golf equipment here from its primary headquarters in New Jersey. In addition, a combined museum and visitor center will be housed in the new facilities in Pinehurst, along with offices for the USGA’s Foundation and the organization’s turfgrass agronomy and management section.
In addition, the resort announced plans to build a boutique hotel next to its Member’s Club, which the USGA will be able to use for player housing and media operations during future U.S. Open Championships.
Oh, and about those championships: the USGA agreed to make Pinehurst Course No. 2 its first ever “anchor site” for future U.S. Open championships. The masterpiece course designed by Donald Ross has been selected to host the organization’s preeminent men’s championships events in 2024, 2029, 2035, 2041 and 2047.
Over the 25-year period, these events are projected to have a $2 billion economic impact on North Carolina.
“In a lot of ways, this is groundbreaking,” said USGA CEO Mike Davis, “and we couldn’t be more excited.”