us open

U.S. Open Championship FAQs

During the week of June 12-18, 2017, the United States Golf Association (USGA) will conduct the 117th U.S. Open Championship on the grand stage of Erin Hills and in the State of Wisconsin for the first time. The championship will welcome the world’s greatest players vying for the coveted trophy that has been given to the champion since 1895. The USGA will provide the ultimate, most comprehensive test in golf to identify the best of the best, with past champions including Bob Jones, Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Wisconsin’s own Andy North. The U.S. Open is one of the preeminent worldwide golf events, delivering the most memorable moments in golf history. The USGA and Erin Hills are honored to welcome U.S. Open fans back to the Midwest, as we await Erin Hills’ moment to make history!

The U.S. Open is played at iconic venues around the country, with 51 courses to date holding the distinction of U.S. Open site. Erin Hills will be the sixth public-access course to the host the championship (joining Pebble Beach, Pinehurst, Bethpage, Torrey Pines and Chambers Bay). More than 35,000 spectators are expected to attend each day, and more than 5,000 volunteers will assist us during championship week. Historically, the U.S. Open generates more than $120 million in positive economic impact to the host communities and region in which it is held.

General Event Information

What is the U.S. Open Championship?

The U.S. Open Championship is annually conducted in the United States, identifying the world’s greatest golfer, and rewarding them with the coveted U.S. Open Trophy. It was first played in 1895 and is conducted in June. Winners of the U.S. Open Championship include many of golf’s greats, including Bob Jones, Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods.

The championship is played at a range of venues all around the country, with iconic golf courses that host the U.S. Open recognized as among the greatest in the world. Only three municipally owned facilities – Bethpage in New York, Torrey Pines in California, and Chambers Bay in Washington – have hosted the U.S. Open over its more than 120 year history.

The U.S. Open is one of golf’s four major championships, along with the Masters, British Open and PGA Championship. The 2017 U.S. Open at Erin Hills will be the 117th playing of the championship, and it will be the first to be conducted in the state of Wisconsin.

About the United States Golf Association?

The USGA celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf worldwide. Founded in 1894, we conduct golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment and amateur status rules. Our operating jurisdiction for these governance functions includes the United States, its territories and Mexico. The USGA Handicap System is utilized in more than 40 countries and our Course Rating System covers 95 percent of the world’s golf courses, enabling all golfers to play on an equitable basis. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit www.usga.org.

About Erin Hills

Opened in 2006, Erin Hills is an American original – a heartland-style golf course routed over the Kettle Moraine areas left by glaciers, surrounded by wetlands and a river, with ground that consists of glacial till of varied composition. In an unconventional decision for a course in Wisconsin, the architects used fine fescue for the fairways to emphasize the natural contours of the. With bentgrass greens and fine fescue fairways, this walking course is a change of pace.

One of only six public-access courses ever to be selected to host the U.S. Open, Erin Hills will offer a comprehensive test of golf befitting this global championship – one where a combination of shotmaking, course management and a physical and mental test through four days of competition will determine who will be named champion. Its location, in the heart of America, is widely accessible and welcoming to golfers everywhere.

In addition to USGA Championships, Erin Hills has a strong commitment to amateur golf and has hosted a number of high school, college and Wisconsin State Golf Association competitions.

For more information about Erin Hills, visit www.erinhills.com.

How many people are expected to attend the 2017 U.S. Open?

In a deliberate and planned effort to maximize the spectator experience and avoid overcrowding, the USGA is currently evaluating the total number of daily tickets that will be sold for the 2017 U.S. Open Championship. The U.S. Open is a seven-day championship consisting of three practice rounds (Monday, June 12 – Wednesday, June 14) followed by four days of competition (Thursday, June 15 – Sunday, June 18). In the event of a tie after 72 holes, an 18-hole playoff will be contested on Monday, June 19.

Will the U.S. Open Championship be televised?

More than 40 hours of live coverage on the FOX network and Fox Sports 1 (FS1). A complete broadcast schedule will be released in the weeks leading up to the championship on www.usopen.com.

Where will spectators stay during the U.S. Open?

Spectators, volunteers and corporate clients should secure their own accommodations during the week of the championship well in advance. At prior U.S. Open Championships across the country, spectators have primarily stayed in hotels within the general vicinity of the host site. The USGA does not coordinate accommodations request, but has worked with several area convention & visitor bureaus to provide a valuable resource to its championship guests to assist in securing accommodations for the duration of their stays.

Hotel information can be found at either www.visitmilwaukee.org/us-open or www.visitmadison.com/usga.

Visitor information about the surrounding areas can be found at www.visitmilwaukee.org, www.visitmadison.com, www.visitwashingtoncounty.com, and www.dodgecounty.com.

How can I volunteer for the 2017 U.S. Open Championship?

Organizing a volunteer force of more than 4,800 individuals is an enormous task for the USGA that necessitates long-term planning. As you may likely be aware, the response immediately following the announcement of volunteer application availability (July 13, 2015) was amazing. Historically, volunteer recruitment has taken 2-4 months in many U.S. Open markets in other regions of the country; due to the overwhelming response seen within the first month, the USGA instituted a waitlist beginning on August 17, 2015, as over 5,000 volunteer applications were submitted. With over 2,500 volunteer applications on the waitlist, the waitlist application period ended on June 6, 2016.

What is the format of the U.S. Open Championship?

72 holes stroke play; Field will be cut to low 60 scores (and ties) following the completion of 36 holes. An 18 hole playoff will take place on Monday, June 19 if two or more players are tied after the completion of 72 holes.

When and how do I purchase tickets to the U.S. Open Championship?

Tickets are currently available and may be purchased online at www.usga.org/tickets. Please note that the USGA is the only official seller of U.S. Open Championship tickets, so tickets obtained from sources other than the USGA could be lost, stolen or counterfeit tickets and in such cases will not be honored at the admission gate. The USGA offers a variety of different tickets options:

  • Galleryticket provides access to the grounds of Erin Hills to walk the course and purchase food and beverage at concession stands.
  • Trophy Clubticket includes Gallery access as well as the ability to enter the Trophy Club which is a tented pavilion on the grounds of Erin Hills. It includes access to separate restrooms as well as seating in an air-conditioned pavilion. Food and beverage inside of the Trophy Club will be available for purchase.
  • An 1895 Clubticket includes Gallery access and gives ticket holders the ability to enter the 1895 Club which is an all-inclusive tented facility on the grounds of Erin Hills. It includes access to separate restrooms as well as seating in an air-conditioned pavilion. Food and beverage (including alcohol) is included in the ticket price.

All weekly options include access to 3 Practice Rounds (Monday-Wednesday), 4 Championship Rounds (Thursday-Sunday) and 1 Playoff Monday, if needed.

Special ticket policies exist for juniors age 12 and under and members of the military, which can be found on the ticket page.

Tickets for the 2017 U.S. Open will be shipped in May 2017. Any ticket order placed via the USGA website can be arranged to be picked up at Will Call by contacting U.S. Open Admissions by May 1, 2017 (Email: ticketquestions@usga.org, Phone: 1-800-698-0661, Mail: 2017 U.S. Open Admissions, P.O. Box 1500, Far Hills, NJ 07931).

What kind of merchandise will be on sale during the championship? When and where can I buy 2017 U.S. Open Championship merchandise?

The USGA has reimagined its online shopping experience, expanding its product lines while making it easier for fans to find and purchase their favorite championship merchandise. The result is a new USGAshop.com that has been launched in collaboration with Fanatics, the global leader for licensed sports merchandise, complete with a new 24/7 customer support model and improved flat rate shipping costs. The new site will serve as the apparel, headwear and gift headquarters for all 13 annual championships conducted by the USGA. Exclusive merchandise and accessories for the 2017 U.S. Open Championship, scheduled for June 12-18 at Erin Hills, have been released as well, featuring the distinctive Erin Hills logo.

During the championship, ticketholders will be able to experience a variety of merchandise bearing the U.S. Open Championship logo will be available for purchase onsite at Erin Hills, including caps, golf shirts, t-shirts, jackets, lanyards, lapel pins, golf balls, repair tools, ball markers and much, much more! For your convenience, a merchandise bag check tent and shipping tent will be located adjacent to the 39,000 square foot Main U.S. Open Merchandise Pavilion. Furthermore, Polo Ralph Lauren is the official outfitter of the U.S. Open and the USGA, designing apparel and outfitting all USGA staff, committee members and volunteers.

For those unable to attend the championship, the Main Merchandise Pavilion will have a pre-championship opening that is open to the public. No tickets or credentials will be required to enter the Main Merchandise Pavilion during these days; however, the golf course will be closed to the public. Dates, hours of operation and parking locations will be communicated in the spring of 2017.

Erin Hills’ golf shop will re-open in the spring in advance of the championship from April 14 – June 3. The golf shop carries 2017 U.S. Open Championship merchandise as well as items with just the Erin Hills shamrock. Unable to make it to Erin Hills’ golf shop? Erin Hills’ robust online store (www.shoperinhills.com) offers gift cards and exclusive Erin Hills merchandise (non-U.S. Open items).

Community Information

How do I rent out my house to players or spectators?

As of January, the Player Home Rental Program is no longer accepting applications from interested home owners. Our Player Services team has received an overwhelming response from local homeowners and they feel confident they will be able to find homes to fit their needs within the applications already received. The home rental website is currently active however anyone who submits an application after January 1, 2017 will automatically be waitlisted regardless of their proximity to the course or additional amenities.

If you have already submitted an application through the USGA you will continue to be considered for the player home rental program, As a reminder, the normal rental period will begin Saturday, June 10 and conclude on Monday, June 19 for a total of nine (9) nights. Similar to what they would pay at a hotel, players are accustomed to paying up to $1,500 per bedroom for their entire stay so your rental rate should fall within this range to be considered. For instance, a 3-bedroom home inclusive of all taxes (if applicable) would equate to $4,500 for the nine (9) night rental period. Rental periods may vary based on the player/player representative’s request.

If you have any questions about the home rental program or your application, please reach out to 2017usopen@usga.org with your name, email, phone number and home address.

Once the application is received, reviewed and deemed a good fit; a member of the USGA staff will schedule a time to visit your home and take digital photographs for the informational portfolio. After the tour of the home, assuming both the USGA and the home owner want to proceed, the USGA will create an informational portfolio for each home that will be available for players to review through a private website created and controlled by the USGA.

Players and their representatives will begin contacting USGA offices in early spring of 2017 to inquire about home rentals. If a player is interested in renting a private home, their representative will inform the USGA office of desired needs. Once the proper home is identified, the USGA will put the player representative in contact with the home owner. At this time, the USGA will step out of the process. All rental agreements/contracts and final negotiations will be between the home owner and the player/player representative.

The USGA rental program timetable is dictated by the demand of players and, as a result, a specific deadline cannot be given with regards to if or when you will receive interest. With the timeline of the qualifying process, some players may choose to rent a home only a few days before the start of the U.S. Open Championship. Under no circumstances will it be allowable to raise rental rates the week prior to the championship.

The USGA is currently reviewing applications however, please allow time for a USGA official to follow-up and schedule a site visit if deemed appropriate. The USGA will make every effort to keep the home owner updated with information regarding the home rental process in a timely manner.

Where will everyone park? How will the U.S. Open impact local traffic?

The USGA coordinates an extensive local, regional and statewide team to support a safe and smooth arrival for all players, spectators, vendors, volunteers and staff traveling to the championship grounds. Now in our 117th year, our internal team has extensive experience in working with communities like Erin Hills to optimize a comprehensive plan that keeps everyone moving while minimizing disruption to the community.

With an anticipated 16,000+ vehicles requiring parking on any given day of the championship, the primary goal of the transportation plan is to minimize vehicular traffic and congestion in the immediate areas and roadways surrounding Erin Hills Golf Course. We do this by utilizing satellite parking lots to maximize an efficient shuttle system and maintain a secure public safety perimeter around the championship grounds and neighboring residences.

The USGA has identified two (2) general spectator lots, the BLUE Lot located nearby I-94 (Oconomowoc) and the RED Lot located nearby I-41 (Village of Germantown). Locations along with driving directions to the general spectator parking lots will be provided on www.usopen.com. Both general spectator parking lots will provide complimentary parking and shuttle transportation to and from Erin Hills. The general spectator parking lots will have accessible parking spaces for vehicles displaying appropriate HP/DP license plates or placards. For a championship guest requiring lift-equipped shuttle transportation, the USGA will provide further direction within the championship’s Spectator Information Guide to be published in the spring. Please note, there will be no general spectator parking or disabled spectator parking available in the immediate vicinity of the golf course. All other parking is by permit only.

The USGA will utilize a limited number of VIP parking lots closer to Erin Hills, including VIP parking onsite. Championship guests will be required to display the appropriate parking hangtag to gain access into the VIP parking lots. All valid parking hangtags will be distributed through the USGA.

For local and area residents, a passenger drop-off location within walking distance to Erin Hills will be identified and communicated in the spring on www.usopen.com. There will be no parking or staging for vehicles at the passenger drop-off location, so pick-up times will need to be coordinated accordingly. Due to traffic restrictions, access is limited to vehicles no larger than a 12-passenger van or limousine.

In conjunction with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, the lead law enforcement agency for the championship, and the support of the Washington County Highway Department, Wisconsin State Patrol and Wisconsin Department of Transportation, the USGA and local officials are continuing to explore options of modifying and/or limiting traffic patterns on key thoroughfares surrounding Erin Hills to promote the safety of the championship and Erin Hills’ neighboring residences. Although no final decisions have been made at the time of this update, any unique traffic patterns adopted for the week of the championship will be communicated in advance to residents and area commuters directly impacted. If a modified and/or limited access traffic pattern is adopted, the USGA will educate local area commuters through various media channels and the installment of a comprehensive transportation signage plan. Traffic control officers will be positioned at key intersections to help efficiently manage traffic.

In accordance with the parking and transportation plan, press releases specifically outlining the overall plan, including any modified and/or limited access traffic patterns, will be communicated in the spring of 2017. In these releases, the USGA aims to educate and reinforce the parking and transportation plan to those attending the championship and those impacted by any modified traffic patterns. Additionally, the press releases will encourage those not attending the championship to minimize their use of targeted roads and to follow the appropriate detour signage for alternate routes.

Local Businesses

How will the U.S. Open Championship affect my local business?

Communities hosting a U.S. Open Championship typically see increased activity and foot traffic in the region surrounding the championship site, up to and during the championship. The impact on specific businesses will be influenced by a variety of factors including, but not limited to, the type and location of the business. Some businesses will see a spike in foot traffic and interest during the championship, while others should expect normal business volume. Spending during championship week is primarily focused on travel and hospitality-related industries. However, the USGA is committed to using local and regional vendors during the pre-championship construction period, and encourages each of our vendors to give back to the community by supporting businesses where possible. We are thankful for those businesses that have welcomed us and offered late dining hours for our teams particularly during this period and through the championship, and for their community spirit in inviting worldwide spectators to their area.

Historically, the U.S. Open Championship has generated more than $120 million in long-term economic impact to the host region in which it is held.

How can I find out more about corporate hospitality sales options?

For more information on corporate hospitality options, please feel free to contact MSG Promotions, Inc., the official corporate hospitality broker for the U.S. Open Championship at 484-223-3295 or MSGPromotions.com.

Can I use the U.S. Open Championship, USGA and/or Erin Hills logos for advertising or publicity on behalf of my business, or for my own personal use?

Use of the U.S. Open logo, the USGA logo or the Erin Hills logo is strictly prohibited without written permission from the USGA. All intellectual property, including the term U.S. Open as well as other related marks and logos relating to the championship and/or the USGA, are trademark-protected and therefore their use for business or individual purposes is protected. Any additional questions regarding intended use of the championship name or logo may be directed to the USGA Championship Office at 2017usopen@usga.org.

Volunteers

What is the biggest misconception people have about volunteering for a major golf championship?

Generally, the biggest misconception about volunteering for the U.S. Open (or any other major golf championship) is the timeframe during which an individual can register to volunteer. Since it is such a large event, the planning process actually begins several years in advance of the Championship.  At this point, all volunteer positions have been filled for the 2017 U.S. Open Championship.

Is it difficult at times to explain that it actually costs money to be a volunteer?

As is the case with most major golf events, there is a fee associated with the volunteer package for the U.S. Open Championship. The volunteer fee for the 2017 U.S. Open Championship is $175. The fee does prove to be a worthwhile investment for someone who is not only interested in participating as a volunteer, but is also interested in having the ability to attend the championship on a daily basis. The cost of volunteering covers the actual cost of premium volunteer apparel specifically designed for the 2017 U.S. Open Championship, meal vouchers for each shift a volunteer works, and also includes a credential valid for all seven (7) days of the championship. The credential will serve as a ticket for admissions any day of the championship regardless of whether or not the volunteer is assigned to a shift. A week-long grounds ticket package or badge would typically be valued at approximately $400.

What is the time commitment for a U.S. Open volunteer? How many hours/shifts could I volunteer?

All volunteers for the 2017 U.S. Open Championship are required to volunteer a minimum of four shifts with each shift lasting approximately five to six hours. Every volunteer is responsible for arriving at their assigned positions on time. The USGA will conduct training sessions for each volunteer committee in the spring of 2017. Volunteers are expected to attend their respective volunteer training session which will generally take place on a weekend and last approximately one hour.

The range of duties for volunteers is fairly widespread. What are some of the duties that surprise potential volunteers the most?

To manage the wide array of responsibilities associated with conducting the championship, the 2017 U.S. Open will require the assistance of more than 4,500 volunteers serving on 22 different committees. These committees cover a broad spectrum of tasks and assignments, including but not limited to: Hospitality Services, Marshaling, On-Course Operations, Scoring Functions, Spectator Services and Merchandising.

How do I sign up to volunteer with my spouse, family, friends, etc.? Is it possible to schedule time with friends or family for the same volunteer shift?

Volunteer availability forms will be sent out toward the end of the 2016 calendar year. Volunteers can coordinate schedules with spouse, family, friends, etc. and will be able to indicate the date and shifts they can work on their availability form.

What are some of the thoughts volunteers share at the conclusion of a U.S. Open Championship?

As an integral part of the U.S. Open Championship, volunteers are given the opportunity to communicate through day-to-day interactions with USGA staff, or by completing a survey during and after the championship. In most cases, the results and comments are highly positive.  Often, volunteers will echo their sentiments towards the unique experience that volunteering afforded them during the week of the championship and how exciting it was to be actively involved in such a historic event. In some instances, volunteers will provide constructive feedback on how to improve the volunteer experience. USGA staff thoroughly reads through each survey response, and takes into consideration all of feedback so as to improve the volunteer program and experience for future U.S. Open Championships at future venues.