“It is my distinct pleasure to share with all of you today the 3M is bringing an official PGA tour event to Minnesota,” said 3M Senior Vice President, Paul Keel.
3M, the PGA Tour and Pro Links Sports have entered into a seven year agreement to hold a PGA Tour event at the TPC Twin Cities every summer.
“So much bigger than what we’ve had in the past,” said Executive Director of Pro Links Sports, Hollis Cavner. “I know when you came out here in the past, it always looked big and everything and it was but you’ll be shocked when you come back and see it in 2019. It’ll be a full field event, we have a lot of great things planned with concerts and all kinds of stuff during the week, we really plan on making this a community happening.”
Cavner also reflected on the partnerships that the 3M Championship has helped build.
“The events like this could never happen without just tremendous partnerships and you know, partnerships start here locally, and Anoka County has been with us from day one when we started at Bunker Hills many many years ago, and they’ve been a tremendous partner, tremendous friends. The city of Blaine, same thing, you couldn’t ask for a more cooperative group working with us, the National Sports Center next door,” he said.
The 3M Championship has always been good for the city from an economic impact standpoint, but the new 3M Open will mean big dollars for the area.
“The economic impact on an event like this is somewhere between $50 and 75 million for the week,” Cavner said. “That’s what the PGA tour, that’s all the studies [they] have done, they’ve been repeatedly done and that’s just a huge economic impact for our city.”
Behind the scenes Cavner and 3M have been working for a long time to bring a PGA Tour event to Blaine.
“Eight years ago we actually put in for a PGA tour event, and it’s taken that long to even get into the system and work our way through it. We’ve always known we’ve had the best sponsor on the tour at 3M, we also happen to have the best event on Champions Tour, it actually worked against us because we did have such a great event, you know nobody wants to have an event like that go away,” he said.
Tickets for the 3M Open won’t be free like the 3M Championship but will average between $25 and 65 and kids tickets will remain free. Keel said one thing that won’t change is the commitment to donate proceeds from the tournament to charity.
“As part of our transition to the 3M Open, 3M has launched a new entity called the 3M Open Fund,” Keel said. “Now the charter of this group is to collect and disseminate all net proceeds from the tournament, 100 percent of net proceeds from the 3M open will be given to worthy causes.”
The final 3M Championship will be held this August and Cavner is ready to go out with a bang.
“In a very short period of time we’re going to have the Greats of Golf here again, and with Jack and everybody coming back, it’s a big time, so we are going to try to early celebrate our last year on the Champions Tour,” he said. “We love them, it’s been a tremendous run.”