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Prestigious Michigan Open postponed until summer; new date TBA

Tony Paul
The Detroit News

The Michigan Open, the state's most prestigious annual golf tournament, has been postponed.

The Michigan PGA announced Monday that the tournament would be played sometime during the summer, with the date to be set in the coming weeks.

Eric Lilleboe won the 2019 Michigan Open.

It had been scheduled for June 8-11 on The Bear at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa.

"In the best interest of the tournament we have made the decision to officially postpone” the Michigan Open, said Justin Phillips, tournament director for the Michigan PGA. “With the ongoing uncertainty of the COVID-19 situation and in the best interest of the safety of everyone involved we feel this is the best course of action at this time. We are working with the staff at Grand Traverse Resort as it is our goal to reschedule the championship for some time yet this year.

"We are optimistic we can hold the event this year."

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The Michigan Open, which has a new sponsor in Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel, is set to have a purse of more than $115,000, second-largest in the tournament's history.

The Michigan Open held its first tournament in 1916, and has been played annually since 1919. It brings together the state's best professional and amateur golfers, and has such notable winners as 11-time major champ Walter Hagen, inaugural Masters champion Horton Smith and long-time PGA Tour player Tom Gillis.

Okemos' Eric Lilleboe won the tournament in 2019.

The Michigan PGA also has postponed at least its first three tournaments of the year, with its schedule set to start in late April. The Golf Association of Michigan has postponed its tournaments through mid-May, with a cancellation for the local U.S. Senior Open qualifier, since the U.S. Senior Open has been canceled.

tpaul@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @tonypaul1984