Humana Golf Challenge Tournament

President Bill Clinton, Gary Player, Bob Mara and Jim Finchem
Story and photos by Pat Krause
Story and photos by Pat Krause

Legendary PGA golfer started the Humana Golf Challenge Tournament by hitting the first ball off the tee. He hit the ball far and straight and did a little jig saying it was a good shot. He was in good humor as he joked with the crowd prior to President Clinton’s arrival and swung his hips like Elvis Presley. Gary Player is one of the top professional golfers in the world.

President Clinton arrived on the first tee to help start the tournament. He clapped when Gary Player hit the first ball and it was a good one. President Clinton stood at attention while the national anthem was sung by 3 gentlemen. PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem and Humana President and CEO Bruce Broussard were on the tee box for the inaugural shot.

President Clinton spent the day being very visible to the gallery and players. He left the 1st tee and greeted the players that were putting on the two putting greens by the club house. President Clinton walked over to the Driving range as fans followed him along the route. He talked to the players for almost and hour going down the line at the driving range and greeting and talking to almost every golfer.

President Clinton gave a Q&A for the media at the media center in front of many tv cameras and photographers. Writers asked questions which he answered easily. He was asked if he thought the tournament would be like this when he took over. He said NO it was a lot better. He had thought it would have not made such strides in just three years. He gave a lot of the credit to Jim Finchem for making tough major changes to the tournament which needed to be done to make it competitive with other tournaments. He is pleased with our valley as to the way it has become an area where health is a big issue and has come a long way in that.

President Clinton walked part of the golf course with some players where the fans could follow him. He greeted the people, shook hands, talked to many and posed for photos. He looks like he is really enjoying his time in the Desert. He has even played golf while he was here but will not be playing in the tournament. He gave interviews on national television. He had a very busy day at this tournament.