The 2012 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am will kick off its first round on Thursday at 8:00 a.m. PT, but the activities and festivities surrounding the event are already in full swing. Practice rounds continue and Wednesday will also see the charity 2012 3M Celebrity Challenge.
The annual tournament has been an institution on the Central Coast since Bing Crosby launched the event in 1937. The Pro-Am is played on Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill and Monterey Peninsula Country Club. Every winter, casual and hardcore fans alike descend on the area, in one of the busiest tourist weekends of the year for Monterey and the rest of Steinbeck country.
D.A. Points will return to defend his crown. Points took home the title last year with his partner Bill Murray, who is a fixture at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am. Also returning is Dustin Johnson, who took home back-to-back wins in 2009 and 2010. Johnson and Davis Love III will attempt to join the five players who have won the tournament at least three times, while Phil Mickelson will attempt to join Sam Snead and Mark O'Meara as the only two players to have won the tournament four or more times (O'Meara's five wins are the most all-time). Tiger Woods will also be participating in the tournament. His only win at the Pro-Am came in 2000.
Celebrities joining Murray this year include San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh, New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, San Francisco pitcher Matt Cain, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, former Portland Trail Blazers superstar Clyde Drexler, ESPN's Chris Berman, actors Anthony Anderson, Don Cheadle, Andy Garcia, George Lopez, Ray Romano and Josh Duhamel and musicians Darius Rucker, Huey Lewis, Kenny G and, of course, Michael Bolton.