Fans to be allowed at celebrity golf tourney featuring Timberlake, Mahomes

Staff Report


STATELINE, Nev. – Fans will be allowed to return this year to the American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament, officials confirmed Thursday morning.

Tickets go on sale Monday, May 17, for the 32nd annual event that features Justin Timberlake, former back-to-back champ Tony Romo, Tahoe favorite Charles Barkley, NFL superstar Patrick Mahomes and defending champ Mardy Fish who last year broke the course record.

The tournament takes place July 7-11 at Edgewood Tahoe Resort in Stateline. More information can be found online at

The battle for the 2021 title and $600,000 purse will include standout golfers like three-time winner Mark Mulder and PGA Tour Champions exemption competitor John Smoltz.

Newcomers to the tournament are New Orleans Saints star Taysom Hill, Buffalo Bills head coach Sean McDermott, Los Angeles Rams offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth, two-time New York Giants Super Bowl Champion Justin Tuck and former New York Yankees star pitcher CC Sabathia.

Newly retired future Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees is among the contingent of 39 current or former NFL players, coaches and Hall of Famers who will tee it up. Active players Larry Fitzgerald, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Kyle Fuller, Robbie Gould, Travis Kelce, Patrick Peterson, Golden Tate and Adam Thielen all play the event as a final respite before the opening of NFL training camps each year.

All told, the field collectively represents 16 Hall of Famers, 13 Most Valuable Player awards and 15 Cy Young Awards.

Last year’s tournament was safely conducted albeit without spectators amidst the global pandemic. The entire purse of $600,000 was donated to COVID-19 and social justice charities while the event fulfilled its commitment to promote the Lake Tahoe region in what is the destination resort’s biggest week of the year.

This July’s event anticipates the return to a semblance of normalcy as organizers work with state, regional and health authorities for spectator access – estimated at half the 60,000 fans who typically line the fairways as well as lakeside in boats next to the famed 17th hole.

Multiple precautions will be taken by event officials and sponsors to ensure health and safety for all participants and attendees. Lake Tahoe tourism authorities have enacted various “Know Before You Go” protocols as well as the Lake Tahoe Take Care Travel Pledge to reinforce mindful and responsible travel efforts.

Tickets will only be available online and only in advance. To promote social distancing and avoid lines, gate sales during tournament week have been suspended. Tickets are $30 each day, for the practice round Wednesday, the Celebrity-Am Thursday, and for each round of the 54-hole tournament Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Fans can purchase up to four tickets each.

An adult purchasing a ticket can bring in one child aged 10 years or younger for free.

While the celebrities have indicated obvious enthusiasm for the return of fans, health precautions for everyone will prohibit autographs, selfies, handshakes and fist bumps. Fans are asked to respect the necessary space and distance protocols in place.

A complimentary ticket will be available for military plus a guest on a tournament day of their choice.

Pre-event registration will be required with details and a link announced June 1 on the tournament website.

The American Century Championship has donated over $5 million to nonprofits throughout tournament history.

The tournament will be televised live by NBCSN from 2-5 p.m. Friday, July 9, and on NBC from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

The 2021 American Century Championship will utilize the Modified Stableford format whereby points are awarded as follows: 10 for a double eagle, 8 for a hole in one, 3 for a birdie, 1 for par, 0 for bogey, and minus 2 for double bogey.

American Century Investments, the title sponsor of the championship since 1998, continues its role in partnership with NBC Sports, the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority, Edgewood and the South Lake Tahoe community.

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