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Sanford International organizers say September event will take place with fans

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The Sanford International trophy is pictured at the first tee during the opening round of the PGA Tour Champions event Sept. 20, 2019 at Minnehaha Country Club in Sioux Falls. (Republic file photo)

SIOUX FALLS — Organizers with the Sanford International golf tournament say the event intends to proceed with fans in attendance.

The third annual PGA Tour Champions event at Minnehaha Country Club in Sioux Falls is scheduled for Sept. 7-13, with tournament play scheduled for Sept. 11-13.

In a statement Wednesday, Sanford International tournament director Josh Brewster said the tournament has put together a health and safety plan to allow fans and to play pro-am events.

"As the management team of the Sanford International, Pro Links Sports has engaged with Sanford Health, the city of Sioux Falls, the state of South Dakota and the PGA Tour Champions to ensure that all individuals in attendance at Minnehaha Country Club will be able to enjoy the week safely," Brewster said.

That announcement comes on the heels of the PGA Tour's decision Monday to hold the remaining events on the FedEx Cup season schedule, which concludes Sept. 7, without fans or pro-am events due to the pandemic.

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Sanford Health, the title sponsor of the tournament, has been the health care organization in charge of testing golfers and personnel on-site at PGA Tour events for COVID-19 since early June. Four-person crews are in mobile units are traveling to events on the PGA Tour, the Korn Ferry Tour and the PGA Tour Champions. About 400 individuals are tested each week, Sanford Health said in June.

The PGA Tour Champions, which includes players age 50 and older, has been hit hard by the virus, forcing the cancellation of 11 events and altering the schedule of the senior majors, including calling off the U.S. Senior Open.

As of now, the season is slated to resume July 31 in Michigan and if the schedule is played out as currently designed, the Sanford International would be the fifth event after play resumes.

Related Topics: GOLFSANFORD HEALTH
Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at mtraxler@mitchellrepublic.com.
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