71 teams kicked off the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational tournament Wednesday, July 17.

The inaugural LPGA event at the Midland Country Club began with an opening ceremony emceed by WSGW’s Art Lewis, who introduced Dow CEO Jim Fitterling and Chief Inclusion Officer Karen Carter. The pair teed off at this first hole Wednesday morning after some brief remarks.

Fitterling expressed his excitement for the event.

“These next four days, you’re going to get to see 142 of the best female golfers in the world. And we’re trying to create a little bit of an atmosphere around here, a team atmosphere, so I hope it is like the Solheim Cup. And if you’re around 13 and 18 at the end of the day, let’s hear some noise. Make it loud for the TV, it’s going to be a lot of fun!”

The two-women teams are playing for a $2 million purse in a better ball/alternating shot style format. The tournament is expected to attract around 40,000 visitors to the region and generate about $15 million in economic activity. Food events, family activities and more are all part of the GLBI.

For more information about the players and other events happening during the tournament, visit www.dowglbi.com.