The PGA Championship is typically one of the best-attended tournaments of the year. It's positioned now as the second major in the calendar order, and fans from all over flock to the PGA of America's biggest event.
While the 2021 PGA Championship will not allow fans at full capacity at Kiawah Island's Ocean Course in May, the PGA of America has announced they will be allowing up to 10,000 spectators each day to South Carolina event scheduled for May 20-23.
Last year, the PGA Championship was delayed until August and played without fans at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco. Collin Morikawa won his first major title in a close tournament in California. This year, Morikawa will defend at the Pete Dye-designed course which last hosted the PGA Championship in 2012, when Rory McIlroy ran away from the field for his second major title.
The PGA of America worked with state and local government and health officials to determine this figure. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was also consulted.
"We’re excited to welcome spectators back to the PGA Championship this May in a way that is responsible and aligned with current South Carolina health protocols," said PGA of America President Jim Richerson.
"While we wish we could accommodate the sellout crowds who had purchased tickets, the 2021 PGA Championship will be steeped in gratitude as the best players in the world compete on the historic Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort. We’ve staged three unforgettable events at Kiawah Island ー the 1991 Ryder Cup, 2007 Senior PGA Championship and the 2012 PGA Championship ー and are so excited to pen the next chapter in May. While crowds will be smaller than originally planned, we know the passion for golf in the Carolinas will create a memorable atmosphere on-course and excitement throughout the region."
Fans, players, staff and volunteers will be required to wear face coverings at all times, and social-distancing measures will be enforced.
The PGA of America will not be allowed to welcome everyone who previously bought a ticket to the already sold-out event. They will notify ticket purchasers of their status through email and offer refunds to those who purchased tickets through the PGA of America or Primesport that will not be allowed to attend. Those who purchased tickets through third-party vendors will not be guaranteed a refund.
Since the resumption of the PGA Tour in June 2020, few events have sold tickets to fans. While players have been able to welcome family and some of their entourage to events, few tournaments have welcomed the general public. The Vivint Houston Open was the first to allow spectators in November, allowing approximately 2,000 fans each day. Recently, the Waste Management Phoenix Open welcomed as many as 5,000 fans each day of the tournament rounds.