Hawaii Gets Ready for Sony Open - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Hawaii Gets Ready for Sony Open

Tadd Fujikawa Tadd Fujikawa
Michelle Wie Michelle Wie
Ray Stosik Ray Stosik
June Jones June Jones

By Kristine Uyeno

HONOLULU (KHNL) - Year after year, the Sony Open attracts some of the greatest golfers to Hawaii.

And it's not just the golfers, but the fans and 1,700 volunteers who help make it happen.

The event begins Monday at the Waialae Country Club.

"You know, I just go out there and play and take it like any other tournament," said Tadd Fujikawa, golfer, who turns 16 on the first day of the event.

Fujikawa was practicing on the green, as well as Michelle Wie.

"And so we're looking for those two to be here along with Parker McLaughlin, the Punahou graduate and also Dean Wilson," said Ray Stosik, executive director.

The Sony Open is the biggest golf tournament in Hawaii. People from all over the world come to the islands for this event and it pumps $25 million into the local economy.

The Pro Am begins Wednesday but there are events happening Monday and Tuesday, including the Junior Challenge.

"We're going to have 5 juniors in the state working with 5 professionals in a skills format, something completely new, all at the 18th green," said Stosik.

And there to see it, will be hundreds of golfers and even more fans, including Hawaii Football Coach June Jones.

"Usually I sit on the 18th tent and eat a lot of dried ahi, and enjoy watching them come up the 18th," said Jones.

Golfers will try to dethrone last year's winner, David Toms. Others are just hoping to do well.

"Hopefully I can make Hawaii proud," said Fujikawa.

The Sony Open is also the largest charity event in Hawaii, raising more than $6 million for local non-profits since 1999.

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