This week’s Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open promises to be a winner for players, celebrities and fans alike. That was the message this week from those preparing at Dundonald Links ahead of Friday and the start of the unique three day Pro-Am competition that is free to attend.
A host of big names including world No. 2 Lydia Ko, two-time Major winner Suzann Pettersen, American Cheyenne Woods, Solheim Cup star Charley Hull along with a strong Scottish contingent in Kylie Walker, Pamela Pretswell, Carly Booth, Vikki Laing, Sally Watson, Kelsey Macdonald and two-time winner Catriona Matthew are competing at the event.
Joining them over the three days in this unique pro-am style tournament on the Ladies European Tour are the likes of former Westlife singer Brian McFadden, ex-Scotland rugby player Gavin Hastings, actors Andrew Howard and Tony Curran and BBC Breakfast’s Naga Munchetty.
Guy Redford, Director of Golf at Dundonald Links, said: “It promises to be an amazing weekend. A tremendous amount of preparation has been ongoing and the course is looking great. This is the biggest event we’ve staged but we are ready and looking forward to it. It should be a fantastic advert for Ayrshire and hopefully bring a lot of people to the area.”
Along with world class golf that will be on show at Dundonald, the organisers are ensuring there is something for everyone over the three days with a packed public village and interactive zone, which is all absolutely free.
This year is the National Year of Food and Drink and Ayrshire is set to celebrate by bringing the Taste of Ayrshire to Dundonald. A variety of local producers will be joining the celebration and sharing with visitors the delights of the local Ayrshire produce. On site will be a variety of produce from the delicious Kirkton Liquors to local artesian sweets and chocolate as well as cheeses and preserves – something for every palate.
Joining in the celebration is Braehead Foods who will be bringing a bit of theatre to the event in the form of cookery demonstrations from some of their top chefs. Visitors can learn from the experts on how to prepare the wonders of Ayrshires larder and created delicious dishes.
Families can find something to do on site in the Family Zone including junior tri-golf, a foot golf course and free lessons along with ongoing children’s activities and a visit to the Tadpull, the wonderful mobile playground. An amazing experience is also on offer as visitors can take the opportunity to step into a little bit of stargazing magic with a visit to the dark sky observatory which will be with us in partnership with The Scottish Dark Sky Observatory.
Paul Bush, Director of Events with VisitScotland, said: “We have supported the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open since 2007 and are proud of how it has developed a great affinity with local communities wherever it has been staged. During Scotland’s Year of Food & Drink in 2015 it is fantastic to see so many local suppliers involved at Dundonald and with a host of other activities in addition to the world-class golf on show there really is something for everyone.”
The event has also teamed up with The Scottish Wildlife Trust who will be guiding fans around the course on a special nature trail allowing spectators to tick off a list of 18 different species in the event programme. The Scottish Wildlife Trust’s special relationship with Dundonald Links started with good neighbourliness, the Gailes Marsh wildlife reserve being adjacent to the golf course.
Council leader Willie Gibson said: “We are proud to be supporting this fantastic event and the organisers deserve real credit for being able to attract so many big names to North Ayrshire.
“This will be a remarkable tournament with a remarkable calibre of players – the world’s best in women’s golf – and they’ll be right on our doorstep. This is as exciting as it gets in women’s golf and I would urge golf fans and would-be fans to come and experience this free event.
“The children are also in for a real treat and I’ve no doubt they will never forget the experience. The event is not just three days but the legacy it leaves and I’ve no doubt it will inspire some of our young people to take up golf.”
The Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open takes place at Dundonald Links from 24-26 July.
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