The Blade Junior Classic is the premier golf event for boys and girls from South Carolina. The event celebrates its 17th anniversary with this years tournament.
As part of the event the tournament present a Spirit Award to a deserving individual that has overcome a difficult condition.
This year Grace Vaughan and her brother Jake, from Chesnee, received the tournament’s Spirit Award as part of the annual family dinner held before the start of the tournament.
Grace Vaughan had an amazing week at the Wells-Fargo Championship in Charlotte. The First Tee of Spartanburg golfer won a contest sponsored by the First Tee and Wells-Fargo which among other things earned her the chance to play in the Pro-Am with World #1 Rory Mcllroy.
Vaughan and her brother Jake both have battled a hereditary blood condition. The two have both been to Camp Courage for children and have come back to help other kids.
The Blade Junior Golf Classic is unlike most every other junior tournament. The theme of the event has always been “Kids helping Kids.”
In addition to a first class tournament for junior golfers the event features a Junior-Am and a special auction to raise money.
Last year the tournament passed the $1 million mark and they added to the total with several check presentations on Monday night.
“We have been successful because we have good people, a good club, a passion for junior golf and show young golfers how important it is to give something back,” said Rob Reeves, the tournament chairman.
Champions Tour star Jay Haas and his wife Jan have been a driving force behind the event since its inception. The example Haas has set in helping his community is something that Reeves hopes becomes part of every young golfer.
“It is a privilege to play golf and it is important for these young golfers to understand that not everyone is as fortunate as they have been. If they can keep the example that we set here in mind they can make a difference in their communities around the state,” Reeves said.
This year The Blade Junior Classic contributed over $106,000 to several area charities and public service organizations.
The Frazee Dream Center is in Greenville and operates as a free preschool, morning and after school, and summer program serving under resourced children.
The Center staff and volunteers provide assistance in the areas of academics, sportsmanship, chaacer development and emotional wellness to children ranging in age from 3-16.
The Shriners Hospital for Children also received a contribution from the event this year.
The Hospital is committed to providing the best care for children in specialty areas of Orthopaedics, Burn Care, Spinal Cord injury, and Cleft Lip and Palate, regardless of a family’s ability to pay.
contributions from the event was The South Carolina Junior Golf Foundation and The First Tee of Greenville.
The tournament will be played on Tuesday and Wednesday at Thornblade Club in Greer. There is no admission charge and the public is welcome to watch some of the top juniors in the state play in the event.