Category: New Orleans

April 26, 2013

Video: Three-legged alligator walks across fairway in New Orleans

Posted at 11:44 AM by Mike Walker

Where's Boo Weekley when you need him? A three-legged alligator climbed out of the water to sun himself and watch some golf during the first round of the Zurich Classic at TPC Louisiana on Thursday, much to the amusement of the Golf Channel's Nick Faldo.

And here's Boo Weekley's famous description of how to communicate with alligators from the 2011 Zurich Classic. (Starts at 2:25 mark)

April 25, 2009

What to Watch For Saturday at the Zurich Classic: Jerry Kelly, Kenny Perry and Jamabalaya

Posted at 9:13 AM by

By Gary Van Sickle
Senior writer, Sports Illustrated

Jerry Kelly, the Wisconsin native who hasn’t won on tour since 2002
. His game has been coming around this year. He’s got the lead going into the third round, he’s a guy who likes to shape shots and that’s the kind of player who does well at the TPC at Louisiana.

Kenny Perry, of the Masters saga. He rallied to play two decent rounds, including an eagle at the par-5 18th hole Friday. He’s not out of it here, just five shots behind Kelly, although a bunched leaderboard means he’s part of a pretty big posse. A good round today could bounce him right back near the lead. Can he summon one up after that Masters letdown? We’ll see.

Jamabalaya. You can get it at a concession stand near the clubhouse. Not your everyday concession stand food. And it’s New Orleans. They don’t know how to make anything that’s not tasty. You can wash it down with a drink and a benet. Nice.

April 02, 2009

Louisiana taxpayers shell out $4 million to high-end course, PGA Tour

Posted at 12:00 PM by Mike Walker

Louisiana taxpayers paid $4 million to the PGA Tour and private developers for unplayed rounds at the TPC course in Avondale, near New Orleans, and still owe them more money, according to a local newspaper.

I read that sentence a few times to make sure it wasn't a mistake. Apparently, Louisiana, one of the poorest states in the U.S. by almost any measure, agreed to the payments as part of a subsidy to get the course built in 2004 and keep its associated Tour stop, the Zurich Classic of New Orleans. The Shreveport Times has all the details of the Tour's sweet deal, which will likely be in the running for "taxpayer outrage of the week" on talk radio and cable TV around the country.

The subsidies to Tournament Players Club golf course in Avondale — host of the annual Zurich Classic, part of the PGA golf tour — end this fiscal year.

But before the five-year deal concludes, the state needs to come up with another nearly $1 million to meet its obligations, according to figures obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press from Barbara Goodson, deputy commissioner of the Division of Administration — the governor's financial office.

Lawmakers will consider whether to approve those additional dollars in the upcoming legislative session that begins April 27 as they weigh budget cuts to public colleges and health care services for the poor and uninsured.

"It's a contractual obligation for the state, and good, bad and in between, the state needs to live up to its end of the obligation," said Sen. John Alario, D-Westwego. Alario was involved in the TPC deal, but he said he didn't know about the payment for the rounds of golf not played.

The contractual arrangement was part of a 2001 agreement struck with former Gov. Mike Foster's administration that guaranteed the golf course — the TPC of Louisiana — a specific number of rounds of play each year booked through local hotels.

Greens fees for TPC-Avondale in peak season are $169 per round. Louisiana residents pay $160. (Resident rates are better in the off-season.) Usually I feel fleeced when the locals get a big discount, but Louisiana taxpayers earned it.

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