Following Sang-Moon Bae's win at the Byron Nelson in Las Colinas, the PGA TOUR packed up and headed 30.3 miles to the west for the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial in Fort Worth. The two tournaments are as different as Dallas and Fort Worth with the Nelson having the atmosphere of one the parties thrown in the recent Leonardo DiCaprio movie The Great Gatsby, where the Colonial feels like a golf tournament that just happens to be full of beautiful people.
Colonial week got underway in downtown Dallas of all places with Rickie Fowler winning the Red Bull Off Course event in AT&T Plaza. Wednesday's Pro-Am brought celebrities including country singers Randy Rogers and Wade Bowen, Dallas Stars color analyst Daryl Reaugh and TCU head football coach Gary Patterson out to the historic golf course.
As for the professional golfers, they got to work on Thursday morning with the round of the day being an 8-under 62 by Colonial member Ryan Palmer. The biggest gallery of the day belonged to the marquee afternoon group of Fowler, 2011 Masters champion Charl Schwartzel and 1997 PGA Championship winner Davis Love III. Others who had big followings included defending champion Zach Johnson and two-time major champion John Daly.
The list of hot spots on the Colonial grounds begins with the 13th Hole aka the 'Party Hole,' the Champions Club, the exclusive clubhouse and the new additions to this year's event, the Grey Goose 19th Hole Lounge (located on the left of the 17th fairway next to the No. 16 green) and the Beringer Wine Bar at the No. 10 fairway.
Once fans have ventured away from Colonial, look for big crowds at Woodshed Smokehouse, the new Waters off West 7th, Railhead BBQ and Joe T. Garcia's. The hottest nightspot in Fort Worth, Reservoir, is hosting a Golden Tee tournament and will have a shuttle to the Colonial on Saturday and Sunday. Another big attraction is the Michelob Ultra 19th Hole in Sundance Square that features free live music and is open from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Friday.
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