For the second time since the coronavirus pandemic began, the annual ShopRite LPGA Classic at the Jersey Shore has changed dates, with the tournament now scheduled to be played Oct. 2-4, the LPGA announced Wednesday.
With ShopRite pushed back, and provided there are no further alterations to the schedule, fans in the extended Philadelphia area will have an opportunity to watch LPGA players in back-to-back weeks, with the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship – a major – at Aronimink Golf Club in Newtown Square taking place the following weekend.
“That was certainly part of what made the move attractive,” ShopRite LPGA Classic executive director Tim Erensen said Wednesday. “It will help our field 100%. When we’ve had the Women’s PGA in Houston or in the Northwest, it’s impacted our field. Given today’s climate with travel concerns, I think it’ll be an easy two-week stretch for the ladies.”
The ShopRite LPGA Classic, a 54-hole event at Seaview Resort in Galloway, N.J., was originally scheduled for May 29-31 but it was pushed back last month to July 31-Aug. 2. The new October dates formerly belonged to the Meijer LPGA Classic in Grand Rapids, Mich., which was canceled.
“We look forward to visiting the Jersey Shore in October and continuing an incredible tradition of great championships and giving back to the local community,” LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said.
Erensen called the new dates “an opportunity that we were quick to jump on.”
“The week certainly works from a golf course standpoint, for the market,” he said. “It gets us kind of in that shoulder season, basically fall instead of spring. It’s an easier time of year for the golf course, the golf course conditioning. For us, it just gives the world more time, it gives us more time to let things settle.”
Erensen added that tournament officials will not just look at golf over the coming months, but sports in general and other considerations, such as whether the beaches, the casinos, and hotels will be back to close to where they were before the pandemic.
“I think those will all be driving factors for us and drive any decisions or alterations that we’ll have to make come late September,” he said.