HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - The crowds of golf enthusiasts are no longer lining Fallen Oaks fairways, but there was still plenty of activity Monday at the golf course. It was the hustle and bustle of crews working nonstop to pack up the event.
"A small city's been built here and we're tearing it down, so to speak," said Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic Director Steve Nieman.
The complex layout takes six to eight weeks to set up. That means a lot of work for Nieman. Between catering, network set ups, and making sure the players have everything they need, it can be quite an undertaking.
"Then you have all the structures and you have different food purveyors who were out here. There's just stuff kind of spread all over the place," said Nieman.
Now that the tournament is over, Nieman and his team still have about two weeks worth of work to tear down.
Nieman said he's learned a lot during his six years as the director. He takes pride in his ability to assess situations and relate to people helps him improve the tournament year after year.
"Everyone that's a part of the tournament, I want everybody's feedback on it. That's the only way we can make it better," said Nieman.
Rob Heffner has been involved since the creation of this tournament. His company, Gulf Coast Restaurant Group, is in charge of feeding everyone at the event. He remembered his team's first outing at the classic in 2010.
"It went great, but it was really rough. Every year we've made it smoother," said Heffner.
According to Heffner, his team had more responsibility this year than ever before.
"We have four concession stands, we have the champions club, we have 18 sky boxes this year," said Heffner.
That's twice as many sky boxes as last year.
That kind of preparation takes a month and about 120 workers to pull off. Then, it's all torn down in a day.
Even though the work can be tough, it's something that Nieman says is all worth it in the end.
"It's a big week to promote the Mississippi Gulf Coast," he said.
Nieman said the event wouldn't be a success without the hundreds of volunteers who dedicate countless hours to the tournament.