Thousands of eager fans take to ocean course on Kiawah for first day of PGA Championship

Source: Live 5
Published: May. 20, 2021 at 8:06 PM EDT
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KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - Whether they came from right here on Kiawah island, or the other side of the country, many fans say the first day of golf at the PGA Championship means more than just watching golf, but it’s an encouraging moment together for one of the first times since the pandemic started.

“It’s exciting to be around people again,” Joe Gioino, visiting from New York, said. “Especially since in New York things have been closed and things are starting to reopen so it’s very exciting to be around people again.”

The driving range was a hot spot throughout the day as prized players practiced their skills after completing their first rounds. It’s a scene long missed by many golf fans for more than a year. There are still some noticeable changes. Attendance is limited to 10,000 people per day due to COVID-19 precautions. Also, there are no grand stands, but people can bring foldable chairs. Players are also not giving out autographs this year. But none of those changes have phased fans today.

“Now that we got here, everybody’s cautious, 6 feet, requiring you to wash hands,” fan Patrick Tulley said “Everything requires you to do the COVID protocol so it’s nice and makes everyone feel a little more comfortable.”

The PGA has increased sanitation stations and are requiring masks in small, enclosed spaces.

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