The Optimist International Junior Golf Championship will return to PGA National Resort & Spa in Palm Beach Gardens on July 17 through August 1, 2018. This is one of the largest and most prestigious junior golf tournaments in the world, which features boys and girls competing in a variety of age groups.
Over 600 golfers from more than 30 different nations will travel to The Palm Beaches to participate in this two-week event. This tournament will take place on four courses at PGA National Resort & Spa (Estates, Palmer, Fazio, Squire, & Estate courses).
The Optimist International Junior Golf Championship has taken place in Palm Beach County for 15 consecutive years. Boys from 10 to 13 years and girls from 10 to 12 years will compete from July 17-22. Boys from 14-15 years and girls between the ages of 13-14, will play from July 23-27. Boys between the ages of 16-18 and girls from 15-18 will compete from July 28-August 1.
No other junior golf tournament compares to that of the Optimist International Junior Golf Championship, which focuses on fair competition and cultural understanding among youth. This unique tournament offers as broad a field and expanded age groups as any other in its class.
Since 1978, Optimist-sponsored golf tournaments have served as a springboard for many of golf’s greatest players. Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els, Davis Love III, Tiger Woods, Michelle McGann and Nancy Lopez are just a few of today’s elite players who found their humble beginnings with the Optimists. Former champions and top finishers of the Optimist International Junior Golf Championships include Lexi Thompson, Beth Bauer, Jonathan Byrd, Jason Day, Bill Haas, Brittany Lincicome, Jeff Overton, Stacy Prammanasudh and Jennifer Rosales
Optimist has been involved in the sport of junior golf for more than 30 years by holding local, regional and international tournaments. More than 5,000 golfers compete in official Optimist District qualifying tournaments. The best of these golfers, along with international golfers from around the globe, advance to the annual Optimist International Junior Golf Championship.
This is one of the largest tourism generators for the summer. The 2018 Optimist International Junior Golf Championships is expected to generate over $3 million of total economic impact for Palm Beach County in addition to nearly 4,000 hotel room nights. The Palm Beach County Sports Commission’s partnership with PGA National Resort & Spa and Optimist has created 51,744 hotel room nights and over $36 million in economic impact over the last 15 years.