Ready for the US Open (Almost) & Giveaways Announcement
By Stephanie Wei under General

As I announced a few weeks ago, I’m planning on covering the US Open at Pebble Beach next month. But that pesky cost thing poses somewhat of a problem. Thank you to all who have already generously contributed to the WUP US Open Fund. A special thank you to Reader Michael for using his miles to get me a plane ticket (thanks to the others who offered, too).

And, of course, a big thank you to the USGA for officially approving my media credentials. I mean, my God, what’s this world coming to? The USGA is credentialing bloggers (at least ones that fit their criteria points)! Well, I’m flattered, not to mention impressed with their recognition of new types of media outlets.

Since some of you have asked, here’s the update on my little fundraising project — I’ve accumulated around $900. I’m forever grateful for everyone’s donations and I’ll send you guys a token of my appreciation after the tournament (as well as coverage you won’t receive elsewhere). Thing is, I’m a little short of my goal figure, and I hate to be annoying about this, but lodging is super expensive. I mean, the Comfort Inn is $430 a night! Honestly?

Thankfully, I found some charming shack that still had a room available (which I’m warned isn’t exactly five-star or even three-star accommodations, but hell, I’d stay in a tent). But even booking that was pricey. (On Monday night, the Shipnucks kindly offered me a guest room at their home, but I can’t get out of my reservation.)

So, here’s my plea for an angel donation or just whatever. My friends at Krol Vodka have offered to throw in a bottle of vodka for readers in LA that contribute at least $50. (Thanks, guys!) I also have a few copies of Christina Kim and Alan Shipnuck’s book to give away. Christina and Alan signed them and both thanked the lucky reader for helping to send me to Pebble. I’m going to do a drawing on Monday for those who have yet to donate. And I’ll do a separate one for the people that already have. Supposedly, the publisher is sending me more copies, but right now I only have two. Stay tuned.

Alright. Thanks again for dealing with my shameless appeal.

[Photo via Jim Frank]