Golfers from across the state who turned out to Duntryleague Golf Club this week were full of applause for Golf NSW's decision to hold the annual Open Amateurs Tournament in Orange.
The popular tournament for golfers aged 55 and over, was meant to be in March, but like so many other events in the year of COVID-19, that plan was temporarily derailed.
But to talk to some of the punters out on the green on Thursday afternoon was to get the sense that the wait was worth it because it brought them to Orange.
"Orange is unreal!" said Steve Puskavic from Kogarah, Sydney. "I can't remember the last time I was here... I'm definitely going to come back," he added.
Fellow Kogarah resident Greg Harnwell had similarly loved the week the two golfing buddies had spent in town for the tournament.
"It's a great city. We've been here since Saturday and we've played every day. It's a great golf course," Mr Harnwell said.
The club's golf shop assistant Brody Taylor said there had been an endless stream of competitors from all over NSW coming into the store.
Many of them had not been to Orange prior to the kick-off of the tournament at the beginning of the week but said they couldn't wait to come back.
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In fact, so many golfers had come to town and to Duntryleague for the tournament that they had to turn many away, he said.
"(They came) from all over NSW. The last couple of days we've had them from Queensland as well," Mr Taylor said, adding that nearly all of the 156 competitors were not from Orange.
Golf NSW who organised the tournament, vouched for the huge numbers who showed up, with media manager David Tease adding that they had to turn away around 70 golfers.
However, the 156 competitors who did get to tee-off would've spent around $250 per person per night, according to Destination NSW figures he had.
"These type of competitors really enjoy coming along and spending a week here," Mr Tease said.
"For the top ten or 11 players it means something, but for the other 130 competitors, this (tournament) is as much about enjoying the sights and seeing what the region has to offer."
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