Category Archives: Local Golf

LPGA Announces Kingsmill Championship Contract Extension

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., – The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) and Kingsmill Resort announced recently a contract extension for the Kingsmill Championship Kingsmill Resort, which has held the Kingsmill Championship tournament annually since 2003, will renew its title sponsorship for an additional three years (2018-2020).

“We are thrilled Kingsmill Resort has extended our long-term partnership as it ensures that we will continue the rich tradition of showcasing the best golfers in the world, at one of the very best resorts in the world,” said LPGA Commissioner Michael Whan.

“Everything at Kingsmill is first class –– from the beautiful resort, to the championship River Course, to the incredible volunteers, to the way they treat players and fans alike.”

The contract extension allows the LPGA to continue to add to the list of past Kingsmill Championship winners, which includes the likes of LPGA and World Golf Hall of Famers Annika Sorenstam, Se Ri Pak and Karrie Webb.

“Kingsmill Resort is honored and incredibly excited to once again partner with the LPGA Tour as we announce the extension of a 35-year-old tradition of professional golf being played at Kingsmill Resort,” Kingsmill Resort’s Chief Operations Officer John Hilker said. “On behalf of our staff and the thousands of volunteers who make the Kingsmill Championship possible, we look forward to working within the Hampton Roads community to provide individuals, families and juniors an opportunity to create and share lifelong memories surrounding the game of golf.”

At the 2017 Kingsmill Championship, current World No. 2 Lexi Thompson famously skydived into her pro-am tee time and then went on to set a tournament scoring record and capture her eighth career win on the LPGA Tour. Thompson was thrilled to hear the LPGA is continuing its annual stop in Williamsburg, saying, “I’m excited to hear that the LPGA will continue to have the Kingsmill Championship. It’s always been one of my favorite stops on Tour with some of the best fans. I can’t wait to return to the Kingsmill Resort next year to defend my title.”

LPGA Tour players consistently rave about the Kingsmill Resort, especially three-time Kingsmill Championship winner and LPGA Tour veteran Cristie Kerr, who said at this year’s tournament: “I just love the feel of the place. It’s a big golf course. It’s a classic golf course with very good greens. I just love the layout.”

Hole 17 at the River Course: The Most Historic 177 Yards of Golf In America

The River Course, Williamsburg, Va. – On the colorful scorecard, hole 17 at Kingsmill Resort’s River Golf Course reads like thousands of other golf holes around the world: 177 yard Par 3. And that’s a shame. It should read: “You are about to play the most historic 177 yards of golf in America. Take it all in. Don’t rush. Look around and imagine how this very land played a role in American history starting in 1607.”

Thanks to its strategic and inviting position overlooking the James River, the tee box features clearly visible remnants of the earthen works (a hastily made fort or defensive structure) from the American Revolution, which was then repurposed (location, location, location) in the War Between the States. Today a Civil War cannon and flag guard this sacred ground. We’re sure some golfers would like to use the cannon to launch their ball to the tee (not allowed).

But well before aggression – or the early settlers who arrived to this very shoreline to seek a new home –Native Americans lived here and enjoyed the oysters still plentiful and being served up at the 19th hole at Kingsmill. Today, when golfers walk between the tee box and the green at the River Course’s 17th hole, they are stepping on the same land where the Jamestown settlers stepped off their boat in 1607. Those settlers would later sail upriver and start what is now the United States of America at Jamestown. The old pilings in the river are the location of their original port and the beginning of the road from the James River to Williamsburg, the amazing Colonial town that’s still thriving 400 years later. To the left of the hole are the foundations of what was basically a pub, early warehouse, hotel and some say a brothel all dating way back before 1776.

That’s 177 yards of history from the Native Americans to the Jamestown Settlers, Williamsburg, the American Revolution and Civil War to where LPGA players now tee off in an annual professional golf tournament. Kingsmill Resort is also the place where President Clinton, Bush (43) and Obama have come to meet, relax, work and rehearse for debates. Today golfers, families, couples and friends come to Kingsmill Resort’s hallowed ground to make their own history.

And while you may not eagle this hole (which would be a hole in one, too) it’s quite common to see the American Bald Eagle flying overhead. They nest on the grounds of Kingsmill Resort. Perfectly fitting for the most historic 177 yards of golf, in America.

Winston Churchill said, “Those who fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it.” In golf, amateurs call this a mulligan, and if there is any golf hole in America to pause, stop, take it all in – and repeat – this is it.