The Willow Cup was announced on Thursday, November 5, 2020 by Alabama–NW Florida Golf Foundation President, Eric Eshleman, PGA and Section Secretary, Matt Sheppard, PGA. This event was established to be a collegiate and amateur event supported by the Alabama–NW Florida Golf Foundation.
The purpose of the Willow Cup is to give a recognized playing opportunity to a diverse network of players, inspire a new generation of golfers and create awareness and support for the Foundation. The Inaugural Willow Cup will take place December 13-15, 2020 at Willow Point Golf & Country Club.
An invited field of 60 to 72 amateur players from across the Section and the Southeast will compete over 54 holes of stroke play.
The Willow Cup is supported by the Alabama–NW Florida PGA Section, its Foundation, Willow Point Golf & Country Club and Russell Lands.
In the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the game of golf has seen a boom in rounds played, golf-related sales and players from all backgrounds and abilities, new and old, taking up the game for the first time. In the same lense, the pandemic caused many collegiate and high school golf seasons to be cut short – stripping these athletes of an opportunity to play the game they love.
We hope this event can symbolize a new opportunity to capitalize on our mission of expanding the game of golf within our Section by inspiring the next generation of players. We see this event as another way to inspire golfers from all walks of life whether they are continuing their own golf journey or starting a brand new one. We are excited to continue this tradition in the years ahead and create a new narrative for these players by giving them an opportunity and a place to play.
In 2020, the Foundation was able to raise over $14,000 to underwrite all entry fees and player amenities.