OAKMONT (KDKA) — The merchandise tent was the center of attention at Oakmont on Monday. Though the golfers have moved on to their next tournament, USGA products were going for half price. Oakmont golf director Bob Ford said business boomed all week.
“It’s going pretty good. Looks like a buying frenzy to me. They’ve got a little bit of everything left, and today’s the day to get it.”
“We were overwhelmed at times,” said Mary Lopuszynski, senior director of USGA Marchandising and Licensing. “Almost had to close the front doors, it was so busy. We had all 67 cash registers going at once.
Security team member Ed Green was stocking up, before returning to his home in Orlando.
“I came up here to work the event, so I’m getting stuff for the family, and stuff for me to remember everything. So getting my kids something, my wife something, and my mother something.”
Shoppers searched for their own sizes, as the stock begins to dwindle. But Marcia Zaremski of New Kensington did pretty well.
“I have shirts and things for my nephews, and also U.S. Open medallions and the umbrella,” she said.
At the rate that products were going, the shelves would likely be bare by the end of the the one-day sale. But you can still get merchandise here.
Along with sales, there was plenty of clean-up to be done at the Oakmont Country Club Monday. The effort that goes into tearing down and loading up won’t appear on network television. But you can’t run a major tournament and then just leave everything behind.
That’s especially true of food. A truck loaned by Giant Eagle will be packed with pallets of food left over, now that the guests have all gone home. The U.S. Open has opened its arms to the community.
“There’s so many people in this community that could benefit from the US Open,” said Championship Manager Charlie Howe. “Maybe they didn’t come as spectators, but there’s ways that we can help, and ways that the USGA can help out the communties that we call home, for our Championships every year.”
Beth Snyder of the Pittsburgh Area Community Food Bank said 23 pallets of produce and prepared dinners will be loaded up and transported to the storage facility.
“The USGA will donate 25,000 pounds of produce and prepared foods to families in need in our communities. That’ll provide 20,000 meals for families in need.”
That’s 12.5 tons of food. The truck pulled away from the loading dock, bound for the Food Bank, and 20,000 family tables.