Surviving celebrity golf: 6 tips for making the most of the American Century Championship at Lake Tahoe |

Surviving celebrity golf: 6 tips for making the most of the American Century Championship at Lake Tahoe

Autumn Whitney
Edgewood Tahoe's Hole 17 is known for music, the most celebrity antics and more.
Ryan Hoffman / Tribune File Photo

Celebrity sightings, autographs, sweltering heat, sunburnt skin and a good time — this is the American Century Championship.

On Tuesday, July 10, South Shore’s celebrity golf tournament returns for its 29th year, bringing over 90 famous entertainers and athletes to Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course for six days of tournament action. It’s your chance to meet and interact with your favorite stars and have a whole lot of fun, but remember: Efficiency is key to survival.

Tip 1: Arrive early. Celebrity-Am rounds, held Tuesday through Thursday (July 10-12), and American Century Championship rounds, held Friday through Sunday (July 13-15), all begin at 8 a.m. Be among the first through the gates in order to have the best chance of interacting with the athletes and entertainers — once the crowds start rolling in mid- to late-morning, you’ll have to navigate the hordes of people just for the opportunity to spot Steph Curry from afar.

The early bird truly gets the worm at the ACC: The first 500 kids (ages 16 and under) to enter the tournament Wednesday through Sunday receive a free pin flag designed for autographs.

Tip 2: Follow the rules. Optimize time spent at the entry gate and know what you can and can’t bring into the ACC ahead of its start. It’ll be a bummer when you show up with a fancy Nikon in its case and a black Jansport stuffed with snacks only to realize you can’t bring any of this in except for the Nikon (if its lens is shorter than 6 inches).

Any approved supplies you’re expecting to bring must be kept in a clear bag, like what was considered fashionable back in the ‘90s.

Tip 3: Have a game plan. Seeing your favorite celebrities is serious business, and in order to ensure you get the most important autographs, a plan of action is absolutely necessary. Comb through the list of celebrities and decide whom you most want to see. If you’re only attending one day of the tournament, speed is of the essence in order to interact with everyone. Make sure to have an experienced crowd navigator in your group who can weave through people and lead at the same time.

Tip 4: Know where to go. This relates to Tip 3 for obvious reasons — to maximize your efficiency, you should know Edgewood like the back of your hand. The weekend prior to celebrity golf’s start should be marked by hours of studying the course map so you don’t have to waste your time learning the whereabouts once you’re on site. Again: This is of the utmost importance especially if you’re not attending the event’s entire six days. If it’s your first time visiting the venue, it can be a bit much to wrap your head around.

Bonus tip: Most of the can’t-miss action and celebrity interactions happen on Hole 17, known for light-hearted antics, music and more.

Tip 5: Carry a surplus of money. Attendees are not allowed to bring food or drink (apart from bottled water) to celebrity golf, which means you’ll need to be loaded with money in order to purchase sustenance throughout the day. Don’t starve — it’s never fun being hangry and preventing others (and yourself) from having a good time on the green.

Tip 6: Sunscreen. Avoid being a lobster at all costs. It might not feel exceptionally hot out, but it’s easy to fry at this altitude. Apply generous amounts of sunscreen to prevent heat stroke and burnt skin. It’s going to be a huge let down if you have to uncomfortably walk around the tournament for multiple days, and this is an event that you’ll definitely want to make the most of.

Visit for full details on participants, a complete schedule and more information.

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