Dept. of Tourism: 2004 PGA Championship Pumps $76 Million into Wisconsin Economy, Governor Doyle Announces

Jerry Huffman, Department of Tourism, 608-261-8195
Ethnie Groves, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2156

Overall Spending Shatters Previous PGA of America Record

According to an economic impact study released today, the
2004 PGA Championship pumped more than $76 million into Wisconsin’s economy.
Those results nearly double the economic impact of the 2003 PGA Championship
and shatter the previous record by more than $25 million, Governor Jim Doyle
announced today.

“For more than a year, I’ve been telling folks that
Wisconsin is a great golf state,” Governor Doyle said. “This study confirms
that Wisconsin supports major championship golf in a big way.”

According to PGA of America data, the largest economic
impact of any previous championship was $50.4 million for the 2001
tournament in Atlanta and $50 million for the 2002 tournament in suburban
Minnesota. In addition to the spending record, the 2004 PGA Championship
also set a new record for paid admissions with 94,000. Overall attendance
at the event was estimated at more than 300,000.

“From the Governor’s Office down to the local officials and
volunteers, Wisconsin embraced this tournament in unprecedented fashion,”
said PGA Championship Tournament Director Barry Deach. “Wisconsin has
reason to be proud. Not only was it a superb championship, but it gave the
world a chance to see Wisconsin in a new light.” The tournament was
broadcast to more than 100 countries and territories worldwide.

The 2004 PGA Championship was unique because the State of
Wisconsin was one of the tournament’s primary partners. As part of an
agreement between the PGA of America and the Governor’s Office, the
Wisconsin Departments of Tourism, Commerce, and Transportation assisted with
a variety of tasks, including traffic control, parking, and security.

The economic impact study, which focused on spending by
spectators and PGA employees, employed the same methodology as previous
economic impact analyses of PGA Championship events. The researchers
estimated that the 2004 event generated more than $46 million of direct
spending by out-of-state spectators; $9.8 million of in-state spending by
the PGA; and $2.7 million in sales tax revenue. Using a formula they
described as “conservative,” the researchers estimated the total economic
contribution of the event to have been $76,358,381.

The study was conducted by NorthStar Economics, Inc. of
Madison, in conjunction with the Wisconsin Section of the PGA. Funding for
the project was provided by the Wisconsin Department of Tourism and the
Wisconsin Department of Commerce. For a full explanation of study
methodology, visit

“In addition to economic benefits, this is an even bigger
win for Wisconsin’s image,” said Jim Holperin, Secretary of the Wisconsin
Department of Tourism. “Not only did we host the most financially
successful PGA Championship ever, we were able to showcase Wisconsin as a
world class golf travel destination.”

With nearly 500 courses statewide, Wisconsin ranks among the
nation’s leaders in number of courses, number of public courses, and ratio
of courses to players. Perhaps the best known of Wisconsin’s golf
facilities is the American Club complex, which includes Whistling Straits
(the Straits Course and the Irish Course) and Blackwolf Run (the River and
Meadow courses). The American Club has been ranked second among the
country’s top 75 golf resorts by Golf magazine.

For information on golfing opportunities and golf
tournaments in Wisconsin, including the 2004 Wisconsin Directory of Golf
Courses, visit or the Department of Tourism’s 24-hour,
live operator, toll-free number at 1-800-432-TRIP/8747. Free travel
information can also be found at Wisconsin Travel Information Centers,
located in select state-border cities.

Editor’s note: PGA references refer to the Professional Golfer’s Association
of America.