Arnold Palmer was a larger-than-life figure in the game of golf, so it’s fitting that Palmer’s Bay Hill Club honored the late legend on Saturday with a 13-foot bronze statue, just in time for the playing of next week’s Arnold Palmer Invitation presented by MasterCard.
“We’re truly honored to play a role in recognizing and celebrating Mr. Palmer and his enduring legacy,” said MasterCard North American President Craig Vosburg in a statement. “While Mr. Palmer will not be with us this year, he will forever keep a watchful eye over the ‘deceptively simple and endlessly complicated game’ that is golf.”
Mastercard, long time sponsor of the Arnold Palmer Invitation, covered all costs for the statue’s production, shipping and installation. They also are major supporters of the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children and Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies.
— Golf Channel (@GolfChannel) March 11, 2017
The statue is an exact replica of the one designed by renowned sculptor Bruce Wolfe located on Wake Forest’s campus, Palmer’s alma mater, and checks in at a whopping 1,392 pounds. It overlooks the first and tenth tees and will be accessible to all.
“There will be no ropes or fences around this statue,” said Marci Doyle, chief operating officer of the Arnold Palmer Invitational. “It will be infinitely approachable, just like Mr. Palmer.”
In addition to honoring the King with a statue, the Florida Senate also voted unanimously last week to name a section of State Road 408 in Orlando the Arnold Palmer Expressway.
Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs announces that the 408 will now become Arnold Palmer Expressway. pic.twitter.com/Iym7dBvT44
— Arnold Palmer Inv. (@APinv) March 11, 2017
The tournament kicks off on Thursday at Palmer’s Bay Hill Club & Lodge, Orlando, Florida. It will be will be the first playing of the event since his passing, but you can bet he’ll be watching and smiling down from above.
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