PGA

100-year-old recalls first Greater Greensboro Open in 1938

Posted August 13, 2014

— Weldon Fields may forget some of the smaller details of past golf tournaments at Sedgefield Country Club -- a lot of little things get packed into 100 years of living. But he can still recall when the Greater Greensboro Open, now known as the Wyndham Championships, was just an infant on the PGA Tour scene.

“It just flabbergasts me, let’s put it that way,” Fields said of how far the tournament has come.

The year was 1938 – well before the metal drivers of today -- when the  then-24-year-old Fields worked the concession stand for the first ever pro tournament held at Sedgefield.

“We didn’t have anything but Coca-Cola and some crackers and somebody might have brought some sandwiches to sell,” Fields recalled.

The slimmed down menu of the event held nearly 80 years ago reflected the size of the gallery then -- a far cry from the tens of thousands that will see this year’s event.

Fields has not worked the event in over 50 years, but he is at Sedgefield in person this year taking it all in once again and notes that over the years, golf course attire has changed.

“They would come in with their shirts and ties and hats on,” Field said of the well-dressed men in the earlier years of the event. “The ladies, I think they wore their best Sunday garb.”

Fields was also present for the Sunday best of one of the game’s best. Greensboro was the location of the legendary Sam Snead’s first of a record eight consecutive wins on Tour.

“He was a little temperamental,” Fields said of the younger Snead. “If things didn’t go along just to suit him, he’d let you know about it.”

Sadly, Fields’ souvenirs from past events have been lost in multiple moves and through the simple course of life, but he says he still has his memories, and even though they may be fading, they are good enough for him.

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