The Wells Fargo Championship is back in Charlotte this week and thousands of people will take over the course at Quail Hollow Club in south Charlotte to see some of the biggest names in golf compete … and maybe even snag an autograph or two.
Heading to the tournament this year?
Here are some things for you to look for as you make your way through the 18-hole course.
(1) Local restaurants
Forget the standard burger and hot dogs. This PGA tournament is offering great foods & drinks from around Charlotte including JJ Red Hots (new this year), Queen City Q, All-American Pub, and Hot Taco. And of course you can get some Bojangles and Papa Johns if you’d like, but this way out of town guests can sample some Charlotte cuisine without going to the restaurant itself. (Find a map of your dining options here.)
(2) The All-American Pub bar
Speaking of All-American, head down Hole 10 and look left toward the lake and find All-American Pub’s satellite setup. Last year I heard it became party central for the young folk to unwind and take a break from the long walks around the course.
You can even take a free shuttle from All-American Pub in South End to the course Thursday through Sunday, so get some brunch and Bloody Marys at the original location then top off the afternoon with a draft or two at the Quail Hollow spot.
(3) Social Media Hub
Organizers moved their popular tent center stage this year, between holes 1 and 9, and it’s now the largest social media hub on the PGA tour. Watch the Golf Channel reporters interview some of your favorite golfers while you lounge in some A/C and connect with others on mini iPads. And be sure to use #WellsFargoChamp on all of your social media posts and they might use it on the big screens or TVs.
(4) Bonterra Wine Bar
If you scored some Clubhouse tickets, then make your way to the Event Lawn right in front of the Social Media Hub. There you’ll find the brand new Bonterra Wine Bar, where you can sample and taste wines of your choosing.
(5) Merchandise tent
You’ll find all kinds of Wells Fargo Championship and Quail Hollow swag from your favorite sports labels in the merchandise tent in front of the main clubhouse.
Be on the lookout later in the week for the old-school, Ben Hogan-styled hats that up-and-comer star Bryson Dechambeau has made popular again since his great showing at this year’s Masters.
— PUMA GOLF (@PUMAGolf) April 17, 2016
(6) Rory the bald eagle
Between holes 16 and 18, be on the lookout for a bald eagle soaring around the course. Rory, named after Rory McIlroy, was released back into the wild in March by the Carolina Raptor Center. It’s new home, Quail Hollow Club where he loves to eat fish from the massive lake. And he might even give Rory McIlroy some extra luck since he’s already the highest-ranked player in this year’s tournament
(7) New cell phone policy
Cell phones ARE allowed and you can take photos with them this year except — and this is important — “in areas of competition during official rounds or when requested by players, security, and TOUR officials to refrain from taking a photo.” You can only make a phone call in the “Cell Phone Zones.”
Cameras are only allowed Monday-Wednesday.
(8) Wednesday’s Pro-Am
Wednesday’s Pro-Am is a great way to meet PGA players and local celebrities like Panthers players. This is when you’re more likely to get an autograph on your golf flag. Find the tee times and pairings here.
(9) Transportation: Take a shuttle, or an Uber
Check the transportation schedule to see how you can get to Quail Hollow for free from all around Charlotte. Don’t try and park at a shopping center nearby because you’re more than likely going to get towed.
First-time Uber users can download the app, enter promo code WFCGOLF16 and get a free first ride (up to $20).
Looking for more info? Check out the Wells Fargo Championship Patron Planner.
Now go have fun. Oh, but don’t forget to wear sunscreen and drink plenty of water.
Photos: Charlotte Observer file; Will Johnson