By Mallory Harris | Staff Writer
Starting a stadium tour to take the TopGolf experience to new places, TopGolf Live is hosting an event at McLane Stadium that is open to students and the Waco community from Feb. 25-28. With tickets sold online and at the gate, this event will promote the new TopGolf arena being built in Waco.
With this event being new and different for the Waco area, Joshua Beardson, director of operations at McLane Stadium, explained how him and his team are always looking for events to host that’s open to Baylor, Waco and everyone in between.
Beardson said this process of hosting the event has been in the works for awhile between timeline issues and COVID-19 regulations. While Covid-19 took its toll on many stops throughout the tour, Baylor is set to be one of the first events since January 2020 for TopGolf Live.
“We’ve been working on this since January of 2020, so it’s been a long time coming and we’ve had tons of phone calls, tons of meetings, the group of TopGolf have come down three times for site visits and done all their measurements,” Beardson said. “So that’s kind of how it all came to fruition, just me on a computer and reaching out.”
To put it in perspective for students, Beardson said it’s like a normal game at TopGolf, except you are shooting out of the endzone onto the Baylor field. RevelXP, a company that focuses on elite fan experiences, played a large role in coordinating the event, as the company works with TopGolf Live and Tailgate Guys, which is an official partner of Baylor. Greyson Williamson, the account manager for the event, said it was a unique idea.
“18 bays, six people per bay and with tee times all day from that Thursday to that Sunday, you’re getting that chance to shoot that ball onto the field where there would normally be a football game,” Williamson said.
Since COVID-19 has played a role throughout this tour, Beardson said that TopGolf Live allowed the stadium to use their own protocols concerning sanitizing and social distancing. While following typical McLane Stadium safety rules, such as clear bags and metal detectors, an added layer of precaution is taken between each group coming into a bay by sanitizing each station.
With the event taking place outdoors, Beardson said how the little details like masks and sanitizer dispensers are ways his team and TopGolf Live wanted this event to happen safely.
“TopGolf has kind of gone through every possible thing and working with us and saying, ‘We’re going to do this event, but we’re going to do it right and we’re going to make sure everybody feels safe,’” Beardson said.
Another key aspect to this event is how TopGolf is using this tour stop to promote the new arena being built in Waco planning to open in spring 2021. Williamson said when TopGolf Live does tours like this, they typically in places occur where there are no TopGolf locations. He said having this event occur prior to the opening date of the new arena is quite interesting from previous experiences.
Baylor Club is providing concession stands and live music, Beardson said he’s very excited for the event because it’s something very new for McLane Stadium.
With inflatable targets across the field, students can enjoy a fun activity during a time where those opportunities have been limited.