Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia is to close its course and clubhouse this week amid growing concerns over the coronavirus pandemic.
Following the announcement on Friday that the Masters Tournament had been postponed, Golf Digest reports that Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley sent a letter out to members informing them of the club’s temporary closure.
“We are now in the midst of a national emergency. The Coronavirus is increasingly impacting lives everywhere, and we have rigorously evaluated how this will affect the club and its operations. Our focus moving forward must be the health and safety of our exceptional staff, which is the heartbeat of Augusta National,” Ridley said in the letter.
“Beginning today, we are taking the necessary steps to curtail our operations so, by the end of this week, the club will be closed until further notice. We intend to maintain our properties with limited personnel on site, and we will support our many other functions by working remotely where possible. But this is about much more than business continuity. This is about our employees, and the foundation of this decision is built upon keeping everyone safe.”
The letter comes a day after the US government urged a nationwide halt to gatherings of more than 50 people for the next eight weeks.