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Sanford International’s Attendance Boosts Local Economy


Sep 14, 2023

Sanford International, now in its sixth year, is a golf-centered festival week that brings over $20 million to the Sioux Falls, South Dakota area every year. As a PGA Tour Champion event, it has reached a total economic impact of $100 million to the region. This tournament has become known for its loyal spectators and PGA players, as well as the dedication of its staff and volunteers. Held annually at Minnehaha Country Club, the International engages the community in various ways beyond the golf course, making it a highlight of the week.

Sanford Health President and CEO Bill Gassen expressed gratitude to the community for their support and belief in the tournament. He emphasized that this event is an opportunity to showcase one of the best communities in the country and to highlight some of the best players in golf. According to the 2020 Economic Impact Report, Sanford Health has contributed billions to South Dakota’s economy. The tournament has also attracted over $4.1 million in corporate sponsorships and reaches a global audience through Golf Channel coverage.

Steve Young, president of Sanford Sports, explained that investing in the tournament is a way to give back to the community and support local businesses. Partnership opportunities exist for both corporate sponsors and spectators, providing a platform for showcasing their businesses. Chris Ekstrom, president and CEO of First National Bank, emphasized the alignment between the tournament and their core values of stewardship. They are proud to support charitable beneficiaries through their partnership with Sanford International and recognize the value of having a world-class sporting event in their hometown.

The tournament has also fostered loyalty from spectators, attracting attendees from various states. Local businesses, such as Sioux Falls restaurants, have experienced a boost in business during the tournament week. The event has become like a holiday season for them, with golfers becoming regulars and developing a familiarity with the staff. The influx of business creates an atmosphere of excitement and high energy.

The Sanford International staff is dedicated to delivering excellence and creating a tradition that is recognized and appreciated by players, spectators, and corporate partners. The sense of collaboration among all involved parties contributes to the well-being of the community. The partnership with Minnehaha Country Club has been extended through 2027, highlighting the level of cooperation with the city. The tournament attracts over 70,000 participants in one week each year, emphasizing its appeal and significance.

Sanford International strives to create a family-friendly environment where everyone can enjoy the event, even if they are not golf enthusiasts. The focus is on enjoying the day, the weather, the course, the community, and the excitement of witnessing remarkable shots and putts. Overall, the tournament serves as a platform for showcasing the best of Sioux Falls while contributing significantly to the local economy.

By Editor

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