View Mobile Site
 

Ask the Expert

Signal Photos

 

Golf tourney brings dollars to local charities

Hospital, college, young golfers benefit.

Posted: March 14, 2008 12:39 a.m.
Updated: May 15, 2008 5:02 a.m.

Fire Station 135's Mark Savage tees off at Valencia Country Club's 12th hole Thursday afternoon. An anonymous donor gave Savage and three other local fire captains the opportunity to play with pro player Andy Bean during the Pro-Am segment of the AT&T Champions Classic.

 
Golfers teeing up for this weekend's final rounds of play in the AT&T Champions Classic tournament at Valencia Country Club are also helping boost the bank accounts of local charities and school golf teams.

"Charitable contributions to the local community is an important component of all PGA Tour events, from the PGA Tour to the Champions Tour to the Nationwide tour," said Mike Bone, AT&T Champions Classic marketing director. "AT&T is particularly aggressive with trying to maximize opportunities for a variety of charities in each of the cities, including Santa Clarita."

Bone said the tournament, which started Monday, offers two levels of charitable participation - through direct contributions, and sharing the proceeds from ticket sales.

"After the tournament, after all the dust settles, the tournament makes direct contributions to local charities," he said. "For the past few years the primary charities have been the Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital Foundation and the L.A. County Junior Golf program. This year, that distribution will also include the College of the Canyons Foundation."

The event's Champions for Charity program partners with a variety of SCV-based nonprofit organizations and youth groups who sell spectator tickets, which start as low as $15.

"For the first 1,000 $15 spectator tickets the partners sell, it's split 50-50 with the tournament, and after that, they keep 100 percent," Bone said. "For an aggressive charity, it can be very good."

This year's Champions for Charity partners include the Newhall Memorial Hospital Foundation, the Special Olympics' Southern California/Santa Clarita Chapter, the SCV Youth Project, Boys & Girls Clubs of the SCV and the Antelope Valley, the SCV YMCA, the SCV Optimist Club, the Los Angeles Junior Golf Foundation, and the Girl Scouts' Joshua Tree Council.

Spectator tickets are also still available through the Canyon Girls, Valencia Boys, Hart Girls, Chaminade and West Ranch high school golf teams, as well as Total Golf Adventures.

"Last year, the Tournament contributed $90,000 to the Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Foundation, and the L.A. County Junior Golf received about $10,000," Bone said, adding that the ticket sales program generated several thousand dollars that was split with the ticket-selling organizations.

Two days of AT&T Champions Classic Pro-Am play Wednesday and Thursday provided a major source of revenue for the designated charities.

Amateur foursomes teamed up with a Champions Tour professional in a Best Ball format for a round of 18 holes. The entry fee ($2,500 for an individual, $9,000 per foursome) helps support the primary charities and other local non-profit organizations that are involved in many aspects of the tournament operations.

The pro-am package included invitations for the player and a guest to a reception Tuesday evening, a cocktail reception and gala Wednesday evening which included an exclusive performance by The Beach Boys at the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center College of the Canyons. Each player also scored 10 general admission tickets, a VIP gift package and a team photo.

An anonymous donor put up the $9K for a pro-am foursome of L.A. County fire captains who helped fight the local wildfires last October (see related story). They were teamed with pro Andy Bean, who was also celebrating his 55th birthday.

A portion of sales of corporate skybox seating also generated funds to be shared by the designated charities. For $20,000, a sponsor bought a full box including 24 guest credentials and two host credentials per day, plus food and beverage service, closed circuit television coverage of the tournament, 25 general admission tickets, daily parking passes and spectator guides with pairing sheets.

More than $700,000 has been contributed to SCV charities from this event since 2002; this year's tally is still being determined.

Last year, the AT&T Champions Classic pumped around $7 million into the local economy, according to Jason Crawford, city of Santa Clarita economic development manager. The tournament's sponsorship contract with AT&T is up for renewal and whether the event will return to Valencia next year is also not yet determined.

Meanwhile, Bone said, "The tournament is going great this year. This is a golfing town. We have a lot better weather. We have a fantastic field of players, and we filled up both Pro-Am fields both days. Our pros are all coming off a tournament last week and playing exceptionally well.

"You can't ask for more. This is a Chamber of Commerce kind of week."

Comments

Commenting not available.
Commenting is not available.

 
 

Powered By
Morris Technology
Please wait ...