Your Guide to Event Essentials

The American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament returns to Lake Tahoe this weekend for its 35th edition. Last year’s event was a huge success, attracting nearly 77,000 fans and featuring memorable moments and a superstar athlete clinching the trophy.

Stephen Curry, who won with an iconic eagle on his final putt after acing the seventh hole, won’t be back this year because he’s participating in the Paris Olympics. However, tournament officials are hopeful that both familiar faces and new entrants will keep the event a summer signature.

Curry’s victory last year drew the tournament’s largest Sunday TV audience since 2004, peaking at 2.4 million viewers in the last 15 minutes. Coverage of his hole-in-one generated over 30 million social media impressions, setting a new attendance record with 76,810 fans.

Ninety-one players, with various skill levels, will be participating in the three-day tournament. The total prize money is $600,000, with $150,000 going to the winner, and several local charities will benefit from fundraising throughout the week.

For fans, the event offers a chance to walk the scenic Edgewood Tahoe golf course, weave through tall pine trees, party along the famous 17th hole, and see numerous celebrities up close.

Charles Barkley, Travis Kelce, John Elway, Tony Romo, Jerry Rice, Josh Allen, Aaron Rodgers, Annika Sorenstam, and Steve Young highlight the field. Curry’s father, Dell, and brother, Seth, will also participate. Mardy Fish, one of the favorites, lost to Curry last year after a spectator disrupted his back swing.

This year’s newcomers include former sluggers Alex Rodriguez and Albert Pujols, NFL quarterbacks Trevor Lawrence and Joe Flacco, 49ers fullback Kyle Juszczyk, television star and Wrexham Football Club co-owner Rob McElhenney, Los Angeles Lakers guard Austin Reaves, and former “The Bachelor” host Chris Harrison.

Fish is the current betting favorite at 5-to-2 odds, followed by Romo (15-4), Reaves (5-1), former San Jose Shark Joe Pavelski (11-2), John Smolts (6-1), Mark Mulder (6-1), and Sorenstam (7-1). Mulder and Romo have each won the tournament three times. Television actor Jack Wagner, who has won twice, stands at 35-1, while Barkley has the longest odds at 7500 to 1.

The tournament starts with Round 1 on Friday, followed by Round 2 on Saturday, and the final round on Sunday. Participants arrived earlier in the week for practice rounds on Wednesday and Thursday, with a long drive challenge on the famous 16th hole Thursday. There is also a hole-in-one contest Thursday afternoon on the 17th hole. The tournament is expected to conclude around 3 pm on Sunday.

Friday’s Round 1 will be broadcast live from 1-3 pm Pacific on Peacock and tape-delayed on the Golf Channel from 5:30-7:30 pm Round 2 on Saturday will be live from 11:30 am-3 pm on NBC and Peacock. The final round on Sunday will air live from 11:30 am-3 pm on NBC and Peacock.

Friday and Saturday tickets are sold out, but tickets for Thursday and Sunday are still available for $40 and $50, respectively. They can only be purchased online and are not available at the gate.

Spectators won’t find on-site parking, but are encouraged to park at nearby casinos which offer lots and garages, all within walking distance. More spectator information is available on the tournament website.

Source: American Century Championship

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