The Dean & DeLuca Invitational is one of the most prestigious events on the PGA Tour and one of the biggest annual events in Fort Worth.
This year's strong field includes defending champion Jordan Spieth, two-time Colonial winners Phil Mickelson and Zach Johnson, Masters champion Sergio Garcia and two-time Ben Hogan Award winner Jon Rahm, but as anyone who has ever been to the event known to locals as “The Colonial,” the golf is only part of the show on the grounds of Colonial Country Club.
Prince Street Marketplace featuring Dean & DeLuca store
This is the second year of a six-year deal that the “Purveyors of Fine Food” Dean & Deluca has been the title sponsor of Fort Worth's PGA Tour event, meaning the second year for the Dean & DeLuca temporary store to be on site during tournament week. Dean & DeLuca currently has no stores in Texas (although a location has been announced for the Legacy West development in Plano and the company says it’s scouting Fort Worth locations).
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The Prince St. Marketplace sits adjacent to the No. 9 fairway and practice chipping green and also has a pro shop full of tournament merchandise and simulator-style displays from outlets such as Stryker, Bridgestone, Geico and GolfTec.
Prince St. opens into the covered, open-air Colonial Grille that faces the No. 10 fairway. The Colonial Grille offers concessions and places to sit and watch the golf on the big screen TVs. Topgolf, which recently opened near downtown Fort Worth, also has a display set up inside the Colonial Grille.
Dallas Stars Ice Girls at Colonial
The Ice Girls had an appearance in the Champions Club near the No. 9 fairway and also hung out on the popular 13th hole, where they signed squad photos and posed for pictures with Stars fans who were out enjoying the golf on the steamy hot afternoon.
Kevin Kisner began his Colonial week with a Meet & Greet event at Topgolf and halfway through the tournament, he is at the top of the Dean & DeLuca Invitational leader board. Kisner's pair of 67s has him at 6-under and in a four-way tie for the midway lead with 2012 U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson, Irving resident Danny lee and Scott Piercy.
Kisner spoke highly of the Colonial Country Club course and Fort Worth's restaurant scene — he especially likes Angelo's BBQ and the downtown dining options – at the Topgolf event.
Bill Murray back for more fun in the Pro-Am
Wednesday's Pro-am was a case of deja vu as actor/comedian Bill Murray returned for a second consecutive year to play alongside defending Dean & DeLuca Invitational champion Jordan Spieth.
Murray had fun with the crowd and was gracious in posing for photos and signing autographs.
“It was good fun, just like last year,” Spieth said. “Bill is so great with the people and I also learned a lot about my putting from Bill today. I think he had 20 putts on 18, I mean he didn't putt on a few of them, but it was just a really good time.”
Murray spoke of how he was able to see a lot of the course in his round.
“I didn't see Jordan that much,” Murray said. “Where I hit it, mine was more of a nature experience and there's a lot more kinds of wildlife here than you think and not everyone has a drink in their hand. I would run into Jordan on the greens, he would lie in two and I would just lie.”
What a difference a week makes
While much of the chatter at last week's AT&T Byron Nelson in Las Colinas was spent on that being the 35th and final year for the event to be played at TPC Four Seasons, this week's PGA Tour event is being contested for the 71st time at Colonial Country Club.
Last week's 36 hole leader Jason Kokrak and 54 hole leader James Hahn were both in the field this week in Fort Worth, but both will be taking the weekend off. Kokrak went to the opposite end of the spectrum as he shot 15-over to tie Davis Love III for last place. Hahn was just ahead of him at 12-over to tie for 114th position.
Playing in his first Colonial, Nelson champion Billy Horschel finished the second round at even par in a tie for 28th to stick around for the weekend.
The Dean & DeLuca Invitational is through Sunday at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth. For information on tickets, visit deananddelucainvitational.com.
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