The Classic

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By Preston Williams

It is that time of year again. Time to make sure the golf course is perfect and everything is in top shape as we invite golfers and fans alike to our community. The Bellsouth Classic is a wonderful opportunity to bring people to Gwinnett and showcase all that we have to offer. Staff members at Gwinnett Center are once again pleased to be part of all the activity. It has become such a tradition for us that we are already holding the dates for the 2006 tournament on our booking calendar! Not only is our space used for a selection of activities, but our caterers are utilized as well.

What would the Bellsouth Classic be without all of the food, drinks and networking opportunities offered in the hospitality areas? Our exclusive caterer, Proof of the Pudding, is always willing to lend a hand with the Classic. Taking care of food for such a large crowd requires lots of advance planning and organization. I”m sure Proof will do a wonderful job this year as they have in years past. With kitchens to build, employees to hire and food to make, Proof staff is certainly kept on their toes.

In weeks prior to the tournament assembly of two full kitchens will begin. With approximately 10,000 fans to feed throughout the tournament, they need all of the space they can get. They will hire between 200 to 250 employees to ensure that the event is adequately staffed. With an average of 50 different clients hosting hospitality areas and an assortment of menu options, organization will certainly be key. Proof managers have created quite a system of communication. With walkie-talkies, shuttles, golf carts and man power, they manage to cover the entire course.

It is not just food during the tournament that Proof of the Pudding handles. The also cater several pre-tournament events. This year they will have the opportunity to show off several menus for a variety of events. On March 26, they will kick things off with an 850-person barbecue lunch for tournament volunteers – a nice way to say thank you for all those who donate there time for the upcoming week. This event will be held at our facility, Gwinnett Center. The following day Proof will host the Silver Circle Draw for 200 people on site at Sugarloaf. This will be a dinner buffet. On March 28, a 150-person afternoon reception will be held for the Silver Circle Awards. The week-long calendar continues with a 400-person seated serve dinner for the Gold Circle Draw to be held at the Center. The end of pre-tournament catering will come with a 700-person lunch buffet for the Gold Circle Pro Am. As you can see, Proof will cover quite an array of menus over just a couple days time. With meals feeding 150 to 850 people, they will have the opportunity to demonstrate the expertise that our Gwinnett Center patrons are already well aware of.

All of this planning and organizing certainly brings excitement to the air. With the final details being taken care of as you read this, all that is left for you to do is to hope for wonderful golf weather! All of the staff at Gwinnett Center and Proof will be hoping right along with you. As always, we are pleased to be a part of a wonderful Gwinnett tradition. From event space to food, we want to show off our facility and the services available to each and every one of you for your events.

If you”d like to take a look at other events happening at Gwinnett Center and The Arena, please visit our website at