“The U.S. Open: Drive to Pinehurst” Videos to Premiere on May 29
By Greg Midland, USGA
Upwards of 40,000 people each day are expected to attend the 114th U.S. Open Championship at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club. Among them will be three avid golfers from North Carolina who each traveled a special path to get there.
The USGA and Lexus have partnered this year for “The U.S. Open: Drive to Pinehurst,” a three-part video series that will debut on usopen.com on Thursday, May 29 and continue with episodes on June 3 and June 6. Each video features a golfer from a different region of the Tar Heel State, and details their connection to Pinehurst and the important role the game plays in their lives.
The subjects are as varied as the state they represent.
Morgan Riley, 7, of Raleigh, wasn’t even born the last time the U.S. Open was played at Pinehurst No. 2. Riley won a 2013 U.S. Kids Golf World Championship event at Pinehurst, and will now be returning to watch his favorite players compete in a major championship.
Savannah Thompson is an 18-year-old from the Pinehurst area who will attend UNC-Pembroke in the fall, where she will compete on the women’s golf team. She started playing golf after she and her dad attended the 2007 U.S. Women’s Open at nearby Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club, and this year she will be inside the ropes as a standard-bearer for the final grouping of the U.S. Open.
“This is awesome and I am so happy to be a part of it,” Thompson told The Pilot newspaper in an interview earlier this month.
Finally, Larry Boswell, 70, of Jamestown, N.C., has won 13 Carolinas Golf Association championships and is a member of the Carolinas Golf Hall of Fame. Amazingly, he didn’t begin playing golf until after graduating from college, distinguishing his connection to the game relative to the two younger subjects featured in the video series. Boswell has competed in the U.S. Senior Open on three occasions, including the 1994 edition of the championship, which was contested on Pinehurst No. 2.
While the video series leads, it is just one of many notable events taking place as part of the USGA’s “Open For All” initiative around the historic, back-to-back U.S. Open Championships. The program seeks to expand the championship experience outside the grounds of Pinehurst No. 2 to connect with the host community, and serve as an appreciation to the people of the Pinehurst region and the entire state of North Carolina.
Beginning on Tuesday, June 10, there will be programming and special events most evenings at Tufts Park, in the Village of Pinehurst. Visit the U.S. Open Experience page on usopen.com to see a full lineup of activities that are free and open to the public.