With 19 exceptional courses and one of the longest, driest seasons in Canada, golf tourism to our destination, including professional tournaments, is an important segment for both leisure travel and events. This year, COVID-19 has had an impact on sporting events, though some golf championships are still playing on.
At the end of July, Kelowna welcomed the best amateur and junior boy’s golfers from around the province for the 118th edition of the BC Amateur and Junior Boy’s Championships. With precautions and protocols in place, the Bear Course at the Okanagan Golf Club played host to this successful event. The Bear Course will also stage the Canada West Golf Championships, hosted by UBCO Heat Golf, for the second year in a row, from October 2-4, 2020.
"The Canada West COVID-19 Task Force, after much hard work, was able to see how a championship could be run safely, and I’m pleased that the members saw fit to crown champions in the sport of golf in 2020,” said UBCO Athletic Director, Tom Huisman.
BC’s premier professional golf event, the Mackenzie Tour GolfBC Championship at Gallagher’s Canyon, which was scheduled for June 11-14, has been postponed until 2021. Tournament Director, Hugh Vassos said: “Our commitment to the City of Kelowna and the GolfBC Championship is unwavering and we are going to work hard towards putting on a strong community-based event in 2021.” The GolfBC Championship has raised significant funds for the BC Cancer Foundation and will proceed with a one-day charitable Celebrity Skins Challenge event later this month.
Tourism Kelowna works closely with our golf partners to promote golf tourism in our destination and is actively pursuing future opportunities to host significant events with Golf Canada. The 2014 Canadian Golf Economic Impact Study found that Canadian travellers spent $2.5 billion annually on golf-related travel within Canada.