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U.S. Open Pinehust

The Villages of Pinehurst will be the first site to ever host the Men’s and Women’s US Opens in the same year, and when the men’s tournament wraps up on Sunday (weather permitting), it will make Pinehurst the first course to ever host the US Open five times.

The club has eight courses in all, with No. 2 the site for its fifth US Open.

Pinehurst’s history dates back to 1895 when a Boston businessman bought 5,800 acres of land in North Carolina for the staggering price of $1/acre.

The golf aspect began in 1898 with a nine-hole course on the property.

The Pinehurst Golf Club was founded in 1903, and it hosted its first Major, the PGA Championship, in 1936.

The No. 2 course is a par 72, 7,495-yard field. According to the course’s website, its signature is its “crowning, undulating greens”.

The course’s signature moment came in 1999, in an US Open final round that was so sweet at the time, and so bitter just a few months later.

At the 1999 US Open, the final round came down to an intense

battle between 42-year-old Payne Stewart, a two-time Major winner already, Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh and a 29-year-old Phil Mickelson.

Eventually it was Mickelson leading Stewart by a stroke, but Stewart caught the younger player on No. 16 and won the tournament by a stroke with a 15-foot putt on No. 18.

Afterwards, he exulted Mickelson for his recent decision to miss time to be there for the birth of his children, something Stewart himself had previously done.

Just four months later, Stewart was dead, one of six fatalities in a private airplane accident in which the vehicle suffered a sudden loss of cabin pressure shortly after leaving Orlando, Florida, eventually running out of fuel and crashing in South Dakota.

Pinehurst now has a statue of Stewart in his moment of celebration from the 1999 Open behind the 18th green as a memorial.

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