PHOENIX - Nicholas Stevens snagged tickets and is heading back to the Waste Management Phoenix Open (WMPO) this year.
One big difference? It will be a lot less crowded due to COVID-19 restrictions.
"I think it’ll be a great experience. I say that because a lot of people haven’t been able to get out. There’s been a lot of COVID restrictions going on and with this, it’s something we can do and experience a sporting event. I think it’ll be great," Stevens said.
The beloved tournament will be one of the only PGA Tour events to allow fans since the start of the pandemic. Fewer than 5,000 fans will be allowed to attend, down from around 200,000, officials announced on Jan. 13.
"On Friday and Saturday, the general admission tickets went on about 12 hours and Thursday and Sunday have sold out as well, at least the initial allotment we released," said Scott Jenkins, WMPO Tournament Chair.
He said admitted the famous 16th hole looked "odd," but they’re doing their best.
Some have called for the tournament to not allow any fans with COVID-19 numbers spiking again in Arizona, but Jenkins is optimistic they can make the greatest show on grass safe.
"We’re just hopeful we’re in a position 30 days from now to have our community in a better position with COVID. We have all sorts of contingencies depending on the environment we’re in, in a couple weeks," Jenkins said.
Stevens is just happy to be going to the open this year, saying, "At the end of the day, if I can go, I’m going. I’ll get my tickets and just get ready to get in there."