Simmons Bank Championship to debut on PGA TOUR Champions in 2024
Pleasant Valley Country Club to host annual Charles Schwab Cup playoff event
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. and PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla., Aug. 31, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — A new PGA TOUR Champions tournament, the Simmons Bank Championship will debut in October 2024. The competition will be held annually at Pleasant Valley Country Club in Little Rock, Arkansas. A five-year agreement establishing the event was announced today at the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame, with Simmons First National Corporation Executive Chairman George Makris, PGA TOUR Champions President Miller Brady and Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders in attendance. To download photos from the announcement, please click here.
The Simmons Bank Championship will serve as the second round of PGA TOUR Champions’ annual Charles Schwab Cup Playoffs, with the top 54 players in the Charles Schwab Cup standings competing to earn their spot among the top 36 and gain entry into the final event of the season. The inaugural Simmons Bank Championship will be held from October 21-27, 2024.
“We are ecstatic to announce the addition of the Simmons Bank Championship to the PGA TOUR Champions schedule,” said PGA TOUR Champions President Miller Brady. “Simmons Bank has been a tremendous title sponsor on the Korn Ferry Tour and we are thrilled to have them join PGA TOUR Champions to sponsor one of our playoff events. Bringing a tournament to their home in Little Rock shows Simmons Bank’s commitment to supporting their local community using the platform of professional golf to highlight the state of Arkansas and all that it has to offer.”
Simmons Bank was founded in 1903 in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. Today, Simmons has approximately $28.0 billion in assets and employs almost 3,100 associates across six states. Since 2020, Simmons Bank has served as the title sponsor of the Korn Ferry Tour’s Nashville event.
“Since our inception 120 years ago, Simmons Bank has had a long-standing commitment to being a strong community partner and making life better in the communities we serve,” said Simmons Bank Executive Chairman George Makris, Jr. “In addition to bringing hall-of-fame caliber golf to Little Rock featuring some of the greatest ambassadors of the game, the Simmons Bank Championship will serve as a catalyst for supporting local nonprofits while also providing an economic benefit to businesses throughout the area.”
The Simmons Bank Championship will be the first-ever PGA TOUR Champions event held in Arkansas, and the first PGA TOUR-sanctioned tournament held in the state since the Korn Ferry Tour’s Fort Smith Classic, which was last contested in 2010. In markets where PGA TOUR Champions events are held, tournaments generate upwards of $15 million dollars in local economic impact. Net proceeds from the Simmons Bank Championship will benefit several qualified 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations in the state of Arkansas. To date, tournaments across all Tours have generated more than $3.64 billion in charitable donations.
“The best job I have as Governor is to be the chief salesperson for Arkansas. This Tour is just one more thing to give our state an advantage,” said Governor Sanders. “We want to grow our outdoor economy and events like this that have a $15 million impact are exactly the type of thing that we’re looking to bring and highlight here.”
Pleasant Valley Country Club was designed in the late 1960s by world-renowned architect Joe Finger. He brought on future World Golf Hall of Fame members Jimmy Demaret and Byron Nelson to serve as consultants. Demaret won 31 times on the PGA TOUR, including three victories at The Masters, while Nelson holds 52 victories, including five major titles. To download an image of Pleasant Valley, please click here.
A 27-hole golf course, Pleasant Valley features oak and pine tree lined fairways, eight ponds on the property and primary turfgrass of 419 bermudagrass. In 2009, all the putting surfaces were changed to ultra-dwarf bermudagrass. In addition to the course, the Country Club features a 40,000 square-foot hitting area, as well as 10,000 and 4,500 square-foot practice putting greens.
“We are truly excited to enter a multi-year partnership with the Simmons Bank Championship and the PGA TOUR Champions,” said Pleasant Valley Country Club Board of Governors President Jason Garner. “The opportunity to bring the Charles Schwab Cup Playoffs and top PGA TOUR Champions golfers to Little Rock puts our historic course on a national stage. More importantly, Pleasant Valley Country Club is able to support the tournament’s charitable goals and create lasting community impact. On behalf of Pleasant Valley Country Club, we would like to welcome the Simmons Bank Championship to Arkansas.”
PGA TOUR Champions features several golfers with Arkansas ties. John Daly – a current resident of Dardanelle, Arkansas – won the 1984 Arkansas State Amateur and played collegiately at the University of Arkansas. Glen Day is a current resident of Little Rock and has served as Simmons Bank ambassador since 2021. Ken Duke – also sponsored by Simmons Bank – was born and raised in Arkansas, winning the Arkansas High School Medalist at Pleasant Valley Country Club in 1987. He also played collegiately at Henderson University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, where he was a four-time Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference Golfer of the Year and earned NAIA All-American honors in 1992. Both Daly (Class of 2006) and Duke (Class of 2014) are members of the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame.
The Simmons Bank Championship will be managed and operated by Pro Links Sports, a nationally recognized sports marketing and event management firm that assists in running several PGA TOUR and PGA TOUR Champions tournaments. Executive Director Ken Kennerly and Tournament Director Mike Harrison will oversee the event, working closely with Simmons Bank, Pleasant Valley Country Club, and the PGA TOUR Champions to host a world-class event for the Little Rock community and the great state of Arkansas.
For more information about the Simmons Bank Championship, visit the tournament website (www.simmonsbankchampionship.com) and follow the Simmons Bank Championship on Facebook (@SimmonsBankChampionship), Instagram (@sbgolfchamp), X [formerly Twitter] (@sbgolfchamp), TikTok (@sbgolfchamp), LinkedIn (@SimmonsBankChampionship) and YouTube (@SimmonsBankChampionship).
To download the Simmons Bank Championship logo, please click here. To download the Pleasant Valley Country Club logo, click here.
About PGA TOUR Champions
PGA TOUR Champions is a membership organization of professional golfers age 50 and older, including 35 members of the World Golf Hall of Fame. The Tour’s mission is to provide financial opportunities for its players, entertain and inspire its fans, deliver substantial value to its partners, create outlets for volunteers to give back and generate significant charitable and economic impact in tournament communities. Follow PGA TOUR Champions online at PGATOUR.com, on Facebook, on X [formerly Twitter] (@ChampionsTour), on Instagram (@pgatourchampions) and on TikTok (pgatourchampions).
All events are televised in the United States on Golf Channel, the exclusive cable-television partner of PGA TOUR Champions. Internationally, PGA TOUR Champions coverage is available in more than 170 countries and territories via 22 media partners.
About Simmons Bank
Simmons Bank is a wholly owned subsidiary of Simmons First National Corporation (NASDAQ: SFNC), a Mid-South based financial holding company that has paid cash dividends for 114 consecutive years. Simmons Bank operates 231 branches in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas. Founded in 1903, Simmons Bank oﬀers comprehensive financial solutions delivered with a client-centric approach. In 2023, Simmons Bank was recognized by Forbes’ as one of “America’s Best Midsize Employer” and among the “World’s Best Banks” for the fourth consecutive year. In 2022, Simmons Bank was named to Forbes’ list of “America’s Best Banks” for the second consecutive year. Additional information about Simmons Bank can be found on our website at simmonsbank.com, by following @Simmons_Bank on X (formerly Twitter) or by visiting our newsroom.
About Pro Links Sports
Since 1993, Pro Links Sports has worked with companies throughout the world to implement customized, full-service golf programs to fit their particular needs and objectives. Companies turn to us for our knowledge of golf, our unparalleled service and our attention to every detail.
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SOURCE Simmons Bank
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