Dublin Villager

Presidents Cup update

Dublin-area residents give input about golf tourney

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Organizers of the international golf competition coming to Dublin this fall continue to take a swing at community involvement.

Almost 50 community members were gathered last week to get an update on the upcoming Presidents Cup and give input about various elements involved with the golf event.

The Presidents Cup is expected to bring visitors from throughout the world Oct. 1-6 to watch the top 12 American golfers in match play against the top 12 international golfers.

Residents were invited to a November meeting to provide input about the event and ways Dublin could promote itself to visitors, and the same group was invited back for more roundtable discussion last week.

Dublin Convention and Visitors Bureau executive director Scott Dring said many of the initiatives organizers plan to use came from the November meeting.

"We want to do our best to showcase Dublin on the international stage," Dring said.

An ambassador program is planned, Dring said, that will train residents to help visitors.

Dublin Web Administrator Bruce Edwards said other efforts that came from community input include a Dublin Presidents Cup float that could be in the St. Patrick's Day and Independence Day parades, as well as other parades in the area.

Wayfinding around the city will be addressed and Dublin's gateways will be improved. Another planned project is "Welcome to my Dublin," Edwards said.

The video and print feature will have community leaders sharing their favorite spots in Dublin.

A tour is set to get the Presidents Cup to different events throughout central Ohio.

Planned stops include the Emerald Celebration next month, Wendy's Chilly Open and a Columbus Blue Jackets game, Dring said.

More dates will be added as opportunities and community events come up, he said.

"We're doing everything we can to leverage this event ... . We used this to land future events as well," Dring said, adding the Presidents Cup helped Dublin get the Top Gun football camp that will bring top football players to Dublin this summer.

"If not for the Presidents Cup I can guarantee we wouldn't have gotten that event," Dring said.

The Presidents Cup is expected to bring a financial windfall to the city.

Along with drawing more than 600 media members from throughout the world, the event is expected to have an impact of $50 million in Dublin and central Ohio.

According to Presidents Cup Tournament director Dan Sullivan, $4.75 million was donated to charities at the 2011 Presidents Cup.

Players are not paid for the competition, but do get money to donate to a charity.

"Our intention is to ensure we will have some charitable dollars left in Dublin and Columbus," Sullivan said.

Ticket sales for the fall event are doing well so far.

Although sales started earlier than usual, Sullivan said twice as many tickets have been sold to date as any other Presidents Cup.

"We're 70 percent of the way there to selling out of all tickets," Sullivan said.

Tickets are also expected to sell out for the Oct. 2 opening ceremony at Columbus Commons. A "national recording artist" is expected to perform, Sullivan said, and proceeds will benefit Nationwide Children's Hospital.

Activities outside of golf will be split between Dublin and Columbus. Sullivan said dignitaries will stay at the new Hilton Hotel in downtown Columbus, but Dublin hotels are also expected to fill up.

Thursday, Oct. 3, Dublin will have a chance to shine as it hosts evening festivities. The lineup is still yet-to-be-determined, but residents last week got a chance to weigh in with ideas.

Dring said the group will likely be reassembled to discuss activities for Oct. 3 as well as other ideas to help Dublin get the most out of the Presidents Cup.

"There will be ongoing meetings," he said. "We're not going to stop here.

"We want to keep the community engaged."

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