Maricopa, Ariz. (January 15, 2018) – The Ak-Chin Indian Community has partnered with the World Long Drive Association (WLDA) to host the “Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun” on Monday and Tuesday, May 14 and 15, 2018. A portion of the officially sanctioned WLDA event will be televised in primetime on Golf Channel on Tuesday, May 15th. The Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun will take place adjacent to Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino on a natural grass golf range (with stadium seating) being constructed for the event.
The event will feature a 32-man field competing in the Open Division based on World Long Drive rankings, along with a Women’s Division field of 16 competitors. Qualifying rounds will narrow the field to eight men and four women advancing to take part in the televised portion of the competition on Golf Channel. As part of the WLDA tour event festivities, there will be two-days of open qualifying on May 11-12. In addition, a World Long Drive Pro-Am will be held on Tuesday, May 15 at Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club.
The Ak-Chin Indian Community is located adjacent to Maricopa, Ariz., a half hour from Phoenix-Sky Harbor Airport. Enterprises that make up the Ak-Chin Indian Community destination include Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino, Ultra Star Multi-tainment Center at Ak-Chin Circle and the Troon Golf-managed Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club. Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club is ranked as one of the Top 100 courses in the country by Golfweek and Golf Magazine.
"The Ak-Chin Indian Community is excited to partner with Golf Channel to bring World Long Drive to Maricopa, Arizona," said Ak-Chin Tribal Chairman Robert Miguel. "We think this event will bring people to our Community where they can enjoy our local entertainment options, including Harrah's Ak-Chin Casino, UltraStar Multi-tainment Center at Ak-Chin Circle and Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club."
“The creation of this new event in partnership with the Ak-Chin Indian Community will allow the World Long Drive Association to expand its television presence in 2018 by showcasing some of golf’s most dynamic athletes and personalities competing from an exciting venue in the heart of one of the game’s most prized golf destinations,” said Phil Piazza, Golf Channel senior vice president of programming.
Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino is undergoing a multimillion dollar transformation and expansion project including a new hotel tower, casino floor expansion and parking garage. The new hotel tower is slated to be completed in advance of the 2018 event.
For more information on the Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun, visit http://www.akchinsoutherndunes.com/WLD/.
ABOUT WORLD LONG DRIVE ASSOCIATION
The World Long Drive Association is an organization that brings together golf’s longest hitters from around the globe. Emerging as one of golf’s most popular grass roots competitions, sanctioned Long Drive events are open to amateur and professional golfers. With an Open Division, Women’s Division and Masters Division (Ages 45+), the sport appeals to golfers of all ages. The 2018 WLDA season consists of sanctioned events culminating with the Volvik World Long Drive Championship (Sept. 1-5) from WinStar World Casino & Resort (Thackerville, Okla.,) where competitors will convene under the lights for the world title on Golf Channel.
ABOUT THE AK-CHIN INDIAN COMMUNITY
The Ak-Chin Indian Community is nestled into the Santa Cruz Valley of Southern Arizona. The Community lies 35 miles south of Phoenix in the northwestern part of Pinal County. Ak-Chin is an O'odham word translated to mean "mouth of the wash" or "place where the wash loses itself in the sand or ground.” Ak-Chin has an enrollment of more than 1,092 tribal members and a land base of just over 22,000 acres. The Ak-Chin Indian Community has a variety of business enterprises including Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino, Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club, UltraStar Multi-tainment Center at Ak-Chin Circle and Santa Cruz Commerce Center. For more information, visit www.ak-chin.nsn.us
Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club is professionally managed by Troon Golf. Headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., Troon is the world’s largest golf management company, with more than 270 golf courses in its portfolio. Troon also specializes in homeowner association management, private residence clubs, estate management and associated hospitality venues. Troon’s award-winning food and beverage division operates and manages more than 150 restaurants located at golf resorts, private clubs, daily fee golf courses and recreational facilities around the world. The company oversees operations at Troon Golf, Honours Golf, Troon Privé (the private club operating division of Troon) and Troon International with properties located in 35 states and 33 countries. Additionally, there are 57 Troon affiliated properties featuring 79 courses that have been recipients of a “Top 100” ranking by national and international publications. Troon properties include Lake of Isles Golf Club in North Stonington, Connecticut; Kapalua on Maui, Hawaii; The Centurion Club in London, England; Tiburón Golf Club at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples in Florida; Els Club Desaru Coast in Malaysia; and Palmilla Golf Club in San Jose del Cabo, Mexico. For additional news and information, visit www.Troon.com.
Troon / Ak-Chin Southern Dunes
Golf Channel Communications
Ak-Chin Indian Community