Weekly Update: June 1, 2015

New: Inaugural 5k @ the LPGA benefiting Mercy promises to be unique running event during LPGA week

Community: Greenway to the LPGA engages local biking community

Competition: Sponsor Exemption Gaby Lopez Named to All-American First-Team

The Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G is just three weeks away and tournament officials are excited to feature two new events as part of its focus on health and wellness. The 5k @ the LPGA and the Greenway to the LPGA will both be held during tournament week to expose the event to new audiences and open up new ways for fans to be active with the LPGA.

The Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G returns for its ninth year June 22-28 at Pinnacle Country Club in Rogers. Tickets are on sale now at www.NWAChampionship.com.

NEW: Fans encouraged to run along the Gatorade Loudest Hole on Tour

The tournament’s newest event, the 5k @ the LPGA, will take place Saturday, June 27 and will allow participants the opportunity to run along the event’s signature hole. Starting and finishing at the Walmart AMP, the race route winds its way through the Pinnacle Country Club Community and onto the golf course through the Gatorade Loudest Hole on Tour, #17.

The chip-timed 5k will start at 7:30a.m., with registration beginning at 6:30a.m. Early registration is $20 until June 22 and race week registration is $25. Runners will receive a performance t-shirt, gift bag and post-race breakfast at the Walmart AMP. The race will benefit the Mercy Hospital Foundation of Northwest Arkansas.

COMMUNITY:  Tournament Partners with NWA Council for Greenway to the LPGA

Tournament officials have partnered with the NWA Council to offer the first-ever organized bike ride to the tournament in its nine year history. The ride will be held on Saturday, June 27 and will utilize the Razorback Regional Greenway. The Council’s Regional Trails Coordinator, Misty Murphy will lead the ride.

The ride will begin at 9a.m. on Saturday morning at the Bentonville Downtown Activity Center (215 S.W. A Street) and follow a 15-mile path to the John Q. Hammons Center in Rogers where bike parking and shuttle service to the golf course will be available to the riders. A guided return trip will begin at 2 p.m., though riders are welcome to leave before or later for a self-guided ride.

The first 100 riders to sign up for the Greenway to the LPGA ride will receive a free daily pass to the tournament. Those interested can visit www.nwatrails.org to register.

COMPETITION: Sponsor Exemption Gaby Lopez Finishes Junior Year on a High Note

Gaby Lopez, the winner of the Road to #NWAChampionship and the tournament’s 2015 Sponsor’s Exemption, has been named to the Women’s Golf Coaches Association First-Team All-America and the All-SEC First Team as well. Gaby is coming off an exciting finish of her junior year as a Razorback Golfer. Most recently, she had a NCAA Championship runner-up finish where she posted a final round, bogey-free 66.  Lopez is currently ranked No. 5 by Golfweek.com with a 70.54 rating through 11 events.  She has 50 wins against players in the top 25, 110 versus the top 50 and 213 against the top 100 players.

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