“The Greatest Show on the Green” has returned to the Valley this week. The Phoenix Open’s main event will start on Wednesday with the Annexus Pro-Am and will end Sunday. And while there’s plenty of golf sightings to be had – 2016 winner Hideki Matsuyama is back to defend his title – we all know golf isn’t really why people love the Phoenix Open. Rowdy parties at the 16th hole, the annual tumbles of drunk sorority girls in heels, and major music acts in the Birds Nest provide entertainment galore for those of us who can’t quite muster the enthusiasm for thwacking a little white ball toward a hole in silence.
General admission: $40 Wed.-Sun. All first responders, and active, reserve and retired military get free admission for themselves and a guest. More information here.
Here are a few WMPO activities for the non-golf lover:
1. Dance the night away at the Coors Light Birds Nest
From country to EDM, the Coors Light Birds Nest offers something for every music taste. Wednesday night will feature Jake Owen and Chase Rice. Country stars Toby Keith and The Band Perry will grace the stage on Thursday. Friday night will be blown away by Kaskade and Flo Rida. I hope you aren’t tired yet because Blink-182 and Steve Aoki will end the 4-day event on Saturday. Tickets start at $65. coorslightbirdsnest.com
2. Be a good gift giver
Located at the main entrance, the expo is worth a walk-through to start shopping for that next birthday or anniversary present for the sports lover in your life. wmphoenixopen.com/corporate-opportunities/expo-center-booth
3. I spy with my little eye… a celebrity!
Go celebrity watching as you peruse around the different concession stands and areas to observe the golfers. Actor Mark Wahlberg, Olympic gold-medalist Michael Phelps, Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians and wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald along with other familiar faces will be enjoying the event after they participate in the Annexus Pro-Am.
4. Hungry? Not for long
Golf. Grub. Repeat. There are tons of food booths all along the course, but keep in mind that the majority are near the entrance. From tacos to burgers, there’s something to whet every appetite – and these aren’t overpriced, bland stadium food either! Garcia’s, Zinburger and Lifebird Grill will be some of the vendors at the event.
5. Enjoy a drink in the garden
You won’t be in a real garden, of course, but a beer garden on regulation golf course grass is pretty dang pleasant. Take a break from the excitement and have a drink at Dierks Bentley Whiskey Row, William Hill Wine Bar or the Tilted Kilt Beer Garden. Bottled Blonde will also be serving drinks at the 18th hole.
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