I started writing this in a comment to Momo's blog about visiting Pinehurst, and realized it was taking on a life of its own. Not wishing to steal Momo's thunder, I post it here.
Pinehurst is a beautiful place. When you walk down the quaint streets of "the village", you feel like you're on vacation. There is good shopping (though the fashions are very conservative and not my taste), the people are generally friendly (though they are generally very conservative and not my taste), and you can have a great time at Dugan's Pub (any NC Blue-er who visits this area is hereby invited for a pint on me.)
When a major golf tournament, like the US Open or the Jimmy V classic comes to the area, we residents are told by the Chamber of Commerce, various government officials, and editorials in the Pilot (our local newspaper) what a boon this will be to our economy. The roads are re-paved, beautiful landscaping is done on every exit off of every major road. In 2005, when the US Open was coming, the contractor was promised a million dollar bonus to finish before the Open on an already $47 million dollar project to widen and redirect the path of US HWY Route 1 North of Pinehurst. This project redirected Route 1 outside of the business district of Vass, and has threatened the existence local businesses. It was stated that the reason for this DOT project was to alleviate traffic and make it easier to commute to Raleigh for "jobs", there are very few Moore Co. residents who make that commute. By and large, we live all live and work here. It is the belief of many locals that this project was done for one reason, and one reason only - Golf.