400 volunteers needed for NZPGA

Last updated 05:00 09/11/2012

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Next year's New Zealand PGA Championship at The Hills in Queenstown will need up to 400 volunteers.

The February 28 to March 3 tournament has grown significantly after this year's inaugural event, with 132 professionals from around the world competing for a prize pool of $600,000.

The growth in size has prompted the need for up to 400 volunteers for next year's event.

"We're delighted to be back again with what is now recognised as a significant event for New Zealand," said NZPGA tournament director Michael Glading.

Volunteer roles will include carrying scorecards, marshalling on course, ‘ball spotting', overseeing the leader board, inputting data in the media centre or working as a shuttle driver.

Keen golfer Sue McFarlane is again organising the volunteer brigade, and said she had received emails from people who volunteered at the first event or who missed out on places.

"It's a great fun experience for anyone thinking about volunteering, in an absolutely beautiful location," she said.

"Because the event has grown we'll need around 350 to 400 volunteers which is considerably more than this year, so I'd encourage anyone who's interested to get in touch. It's a great chance to get together a group of friends for a trip to Queenstown, and there's also the opportunity for golf clubs or groups to ‘take charge' of a hole for the duration of the tournament."

Volunteers are asked for a minimum commitment of six hours on any given day, and in return will benefit from free tournament admission and parking, a commemorative shirt and cap, lunch each day and a special "thank you barbecue" on the final night.

Those who volunteer for all four days will also get a complimentary round of golf at The Hills.

"An interest in or knowledge of golf is helpful, but not actually essential to all roles," McFarlane said. "As well as people on the course we're looking for people to do things like drive courtesy cars, and these roles would be ideally suited to Queenstown locals. . ."

Prospective volunteers can sign up now with information available on www.pgachampionship.co.nz. Contact Sue McFarlane on mcfluke@xtra.co.nz.

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- The Southland Times

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