Feature

The BMW Charity Pro-Am isn’t normal this year

Celebrities like Hall of Fame NFL quarterback Brett Favre always drew a crowd of fans for pictures and autographs. GWINN DAVIS MEDIA

Normally the 20th anniversary of anything deserves a celebration.

Normally this week the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the BMW Charity Pro-Am would be underway.

Normally this week the courses at Thornblade Club and The Cliff’s would be in peak condition for the Korn-Ferry Tour pros.

Normally last minute details would be finalized for activities away from the golf courses to help the tournament reach more people in the Upstate.

Normally this is the time when volunteers would be getting their uniforms and assignments to be ready to serve the fans and the pros at each course.

Normally the sky boxes and stands would be ready to receive thousands of spectators anxious to see great competition from the pros.

Normally this is the week when the celebrities would find time to shake hands, sign autographs and take pictures with fans.

But this is not a normal week or a normal year or a normal time.

Normal is something that has yet to be defined in the time of COVID-19.

Hollywood star Kevin Costner headlined the first BMW Celebrity Pro-Am at The Cliffs Valley in 2001 and helped begin the long history of the successful fund raising tournament for Upstate charities. (GolfClub Photo)

With the tournament cancelled event organizers have found a way to keep a string of 20 years of charitable giving going, but not in the normal way.

Normally to start the week star gazers would set their schedule to be at the right course at the right time to see their favorite celebrity, but instead tournament week began with a cancelled event that still was a success.

The BMW Pro-Am Breakfast with Champions was to feature Greenville’s PGA Champions Tour star Jay Haas and former Major League baseball pitcher Roger Clemens.

When the tournament was cancelled so was the breakfast.

However, many of the event sponsors wanted their funds to be reallocated to a direct donation to the two organizations scheduled to receive support from the event.

The Cancer Society of Greenville County received a $12,000 contribution from the Champions Breakfast.Board Member Max Metcalf presented a check to Lisa Green, executive director of the Cancer Society of Greenville County.

The Meyer Center for Special Children received a $12,000 check as did the Greenville County Cancer Society.

The Meyer Center for Special Children received a $12,000 contribution from the BMW Champions Breakfast. Board Member Max Metcalf presented a check to Meta Bowers, executive director of the Meyer Center for Special Children.

The presentations started a Week of Giving. Tournament organizers hope the effort will provide some funds to the charities that would have benefited from the golf tournament.

An online auction includes various local and regional experiences, exclusive trips, autographed sports memorabilia and much more.

Over 500 items are up for auction during the Week of Giving from the BMW Charity Pro-Am. Memorabilia, experiences and services are among the auction items.

Items are available for bidding through Sunday, June 7, with some special items raffled during the week.

Anyone wishing to participate in the online auction can find the link for the auction website by visiting http://BMWCharityGolf.com

Access is also available through the tournament social media channels on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Proceeds from the auction will benefit the six featured charities of the 20th anniversary
tournament:
·       Mobile Meals of Spartanburg
·       Prisma Health Children’s Hospital – Upstate
·       Roper Mountain Science Center
·       The Cliffs Residents Outreach
·       Cancer Society of Greenville County
·       Meyer Center for Special Children

South Carolina Charities, Inc. (SCCI), the non-profit foundation of the BMW Charity Pro-Am presented by SYNNEX Corporation has distributed $13.6 million to numerous Upstate SC non-profit organizations since 2001 as part of the PGA TOUR’s $3 billion raised for charity.

The BMW Charity Pro-Am presented by Synnex appears on the Korn Ferry Tour schedule in June of 2021.

 

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