Spectators get hands-on experience at Chambers Bay ahead of U.S. Open Golf Championship

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UNIVERSITY PLACE, Wash. -- Fans near and far got a chance to see the Chambers Bay facilities before golfers tee off for the official practice rounds Monday and then for the U.S. Open Championship Thursday.

As close as Chambers Bay sits to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, the brass didn’t travel far to help kick off the opening ceremonies.

“We have been an integral part of the synergistic relationship on post and off post, and it`s an open post and it`s your army not ours, and we`re glad to be sharing this with you,” said Major General Kenneth Dahl.

With Pierce County taking center stage during the U.S. Open Championship, county leaders said they've been working hard to put to their best foot forward.

“You couldn`t really pay for the kind of exposure this kind of event is bringing to the Northwest and to our county and to this community,” said Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy.

From 7-year old Lilly Miller, one of hundreds of kids who got to partake in the junior golf activities to 5-year old Jacob Powell and his dad Tom of Tacoma, fans, especially the ones nearby didn`t want to miss the chance to see a world-wide event taking place in their backyard.

“The chance to get down this week before everything gets crazy was great,” said Tom Powell, a spectator.

It’s a rare opportunity U.S.G.A President Tom O’Toole, Jr. even recognized.

“To think we had 114 of these things and never came here, and now we`re here- that`s a great story,” said O’Toole.

A great story that many hope will see a sequel in the Pacific Northwest.

“With this beautiful golf course and events of this magnitude, I think the sky`s the limit,” said McCarthy.

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