Celebrity Golfers at Edgewood reflect on the past 15 months

Published: Jul. 9, 2021 at 11:21 PM PDT
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SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Ca. (KOLO) - Athletes, actors, entertainers, philanthropists and so much more gather in South Lake Tahoe for the annual American Century Championship.

It was held last year but with no fans and celebrities could not even bring their families. As players think back on life with this deadly virus, the consensus is clear. While covid 19 is still very much a threat, there’s so much joy seeing smiling faces again.

“We go through the same things that everybody else goes through and we’ve lost friends and loved ones in this situation, so it is not immune to us, we feel that pain,” former Pittsburgh Steelers Running Back Jerome Bettis states.

It’s impossible to ignore the ongoing threat of covid 19, as many discuss the unparalleled circumstances, we all had to endure as San Francisco 49ers Hall of Famer Jerry Rice details, “The only thing I can say is that I wanted to get the vaccine so I could protect people, that was very important to me.”

“You go to a comedy club and have a comedian do a great set and its just as funny but when you don’t have that communal thing of laughing with other people and you don’t have the communal part of the game where there’s the crowd reacting to things,” ESPN Analyst Jay Bilas says.

As restrictions loosen, this isn’t work, but so much fun for the various athletes and entertainers that pack Edgewood Tahoe every July for the annual event. Jonathan Thomas, President and CEO of American Century Investments exclaims, “I call it summer camp and it feels like camp to them when they come out here because they get to see all their buddies in person once again!”

“When you get the crowds back, you feel the energy, you feel the love and it pushes you forward so I’m excited to see that in the stadiums but also out here on the golf course,” Bettis adds.

It wasn’t that long ago where shaking hands, signing autographs and up close interviews were not even considered. Rice with a humble sense of gratitude tells us, “It’s so fantastic to have fans out here again and I’m trying to give them all the love I can. Reno, I love you guys, you know the hospitality is fantastic, you guys treat us so well, we come here to compete, and they just come out to support us.”

Fans missed their favorite stars, and these celebrities feel the same.

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