First appearance in Michigan in 2012 at The Golf Club at Harbor Shores
The Senior PGA Championship will make its first appearance in Michigan in 2012 at The Golf Club at Harbor Shores, a 6,861-yard, par-71 Jack Nicklaus design in Southwest Michigan ranked No. 3 on the 2010 Best New Courses You Can Play list compiled by GOLF Magazine.
The Golf Club at Harbor Shores, a Jack Nicklaus Signature Course located in Benton Harbor, Mich., has been named the site of the 73nd Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid in 2012 as well as the 75th Senior PGA Championship in May 2014.
Benton Harbor is the home of KitchenAid, part of Whirlpool Corporation’s unmatched portfolio of leading consumer appliance brands.
“The Senior PGA Championship’s tradition of bringing together the strongest field in senior golf now welcomes a legendary partner of the business community in Whirlpool Corporation, one of the world’s most respected and recognizable companies, and its iconic KitchenAid brand,” PGA of America Chief Executive Officer Joe Steranka said in May 2010. “The PGA of America is extremely proud to be associated with KitchenAid, Whirlpool Corporation and its nearly 67,000 employees. We appreciate the company’s commitment to the Senior PGA Championship, the communities that will host this great championship and the potential for growing audiences through the company and the KitchenAid brand’s influence and support.”
The Senior PGA Championship will make its first appearance in Michigan in 2012 at The Golf Club at Harbor Shores, a 6,861-yard, par-71 course that is part of the 530-acre Harbor Shores development that spans part of Benton Harbor, St. Joseph and Benton Charter Township in Southwest Michigan.
The Harbor Shores project is a leading force in the revitalization of the Benton Harbor and St. Joseph communities, and is expected to quickly become one of the premier golf destinations in the Midwest.
“We are pleased and proud that KitchenAid will be the presenting sponsor of the Senior PGA Championship,” said Deb O’Connor, senior manager of brand experience for KitchenAid. “KitchenAid and Whirlpool Corporation have a long track record for doing the right things, including Cook for the Cure, our partnership with Susan G. Komen and the fight against breast cancer, our 10-year partnership with Habitat For Humanity, and many other programs that help improve lives and communities.”
“The Senior PGA, KitchenAid brand and Whirlpool Corporation’s alliance presents an opportunity to show how business and golf can help to strengthen and transform lives and communities,” said Jeff Noel, corporate vice president, Whirlpool Corporation. “Hosting the championship in 2012 and 2014 will turn the eyes of the golf world to Benton Harbor Michigan, where the Harbor Shores development is already making a difference and driving positive, lasting change in our community.”
The Golf Club at Harbor Shores was ranked No. 3 on the 2010 Best New Courses You Can Play list compiled by GOLF Magazine. In describing the course, GOLF Magazine said, “One of the year’s feel-good stories is this short but stern Jack Nicklaus Signature design that weaves through hardwoods, marshland and the massive white sand dunes that edge Lake Michigan on holes 7, 8 and 9. Developers are hopeful the course will help kick-start this long-depressed area of southwest Michigan.”
Harbor Shores Managing Director Mark Hesemann said, “The team at Harbor Shores is very proud of this recognition. I had the honor to be a part of Jack Nicklaus’ team for a number of years and it was truly rewarding to have the opportunity to work with him again.
“To this day, I will not forget the first time we toured Jack through the land that was going to be used for the course. He looked at me and said, ‘Where did you find this place?’ Then he began working his magic to design another award-winning course.”
Nicklaus Design, founded by golf legend and preeminent designer Jack Nicklaus, has placed at least one course in the GOLF Magazine Best New Courses You Can Play list for 14 straight years, which is the longest active streak by any design firm in the rankings’ history. Since the first annual list of the 10 best public-access courses was released in 1990 by GOLF, Nicklaus Design has placed 21 courses, including 14 from 1997-2007.
“With Harbor Shores, we set out really to change a community,” Nicklaus said. “This wasn’t just about a golf course. This was a non-profit project. That’s the important part of it. When we started, we had a factory where the first tee is. We had to remove toxic waste and buildings. But in the end, the whole course looks beautiful and we hope is enjoyable to play.”
Opened in August 2010, The Golf Club at Harbor Shores held its grand opening celebration by hosting the “Champions for Change” golf challenge, featuring a charity skins match between course designer Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson and Johnny Miller. A few months prior to that historic grouping of golf legends, it was announced that The Golf Club at Harbor Shores will host the 2012 and 2014 Senior PGA Championships.
In playing in the grand opening event, Nicklaus said, “I thought the golf course was in fantastic condition. The golf course was quite good and I’m quite proud of it. I’m also proud that I was asked to be a part of this project.”