BMW Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs Golf Tournament Sets Record for Charity & Attendance
The third-annual BMW Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs golf tournament raised a record $674,788.03 (net proceeds) for 48 Upstate and western North Carolina charities. According to PGA TOUR officials, that is the largest donation made from the Nationwide Tour since its inception. The previous record was $614,500.
Attendance for the tournament set a record, too, as 43,000 witnessed Georgia Tech graduate and Salisbury, N.C.-native Tripp Isenhour win his second Nationwide PGA Tour event (2000 Mississippi Gulf Coast Open). The victory earned Isenhour $103,500. He shot a four-day total 269 (64-70-66-69) -18 under par. University of South Carolina graduate Kyle Thompson finished in second place, two strokes behind Isenhour, earning $62,100. Paul Claxton finished third and earned $39,100.
In the BMW Charity Cup Pro-Celebrity division Steve Nicklaus, son of golf legend Jack Nicklaus, captured first place. Heisman trophy winner and former University of South Carolina and NFL running back George Rogers finished second. Jennifer Mills, host of The Golf Channel’s Golf Central finished in third place. Oscar-award winning actor Kevin Costner finished fourth. Country musician Steve Gatlin finished in fifth-place. Actress/model Gabrielle Reece finished sixth. Anderson native and former Boston Red Sox great Jim Rice finished in seventh place. Hootie & The Blowfish guitarist Mark Bryan was eighth. Actor Michael O’Keefe finished ninth. Actress Christine Baumgardner finished 10th.
In the BMW Charity Cup Pro-Amateur division, Kimbrough Dunlap of Verizon Wireless in Tennessee, Stephen Lash of ZF Lemfoerder, and Bill Emery of Focus Golf finished tied for first place.
The 48 charities that benefited from the golf tournament were:
A Child’s Haven; Adult Learning Center; Alliance for Community Trust/Greenville Sexual Trauma Center; American Cancer Society/Upstate African-American Family Health Fest; Birthright of Greenville; Blue Ridge Literacy; Boys & Girls Clubs of Spartanburg; Boys Home of the South; Boy Scouts of America – Blue Ridge Council; Camperdown Academy; CARING for Children; Center for Developmental Services; Charles Lea Center; Compass of Carolina; Cystic Fibrosis Foundation; Eblen Charities; Fellowship of Christian Athletes; First Tee; Foothills Alliance; Friends of the Greenville County Guardian ad Litem Program; Greenville Free Medical Clinic; Greenville Hospice House; Greenville Library Mobile Computer Lab; Greenville Literacy; Greenville YoungLife; Hatcher Garden & Preserve; Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation; Loaves and Fishes; Make-A-Wish; Meyer Center for Special Children; Mitchell Road Christian Academy; Mobile Meals; North Greenville College; Pendleton Place; Phillis Wheatley Association; Pickens YMCA; Pickens County Sheriff’s Scholarship; Peace Center; Pinnacle Point; Ronald McDonald House of Greenville; Rosewood Recovery; S.C. SHARE; Spartanburg Regional Hospital System Foundation; St. Anthony of Padua Catholic School; St. Francis Foundation; St. Joseph’s Foundation; United Ministries; Walker Foundation (S.C. School for the Deaf & Blind).
The BMW Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs golf tournament is the premier event on the Nationwide PGA Tour and is the only event that features professionals paired with an amateur/celebrity partner in a two-day best-ball competition. The 14 lowest scoring teams (10 Pro-Celeb and four Pro-Am) advance to play for the BMW Charity Cup. The professional winner of the overall 72-hole event took home $103,500 from the total purse of $575,000, while the amateurs/celebrities competed for individual prizes and cash donations to the charity of their choice out of the 48 beneficiaries selected by South Carolina Charities, Inc.
The three tournaments have raised over $1.65 million for charity.
Celebrities that participated in this year’s tournament included: Kevin Costner, Cheech Marin, Michael O’Keefe, John O’Hurley, Gabrielle Reece, Jim Courier, Hootie & The Blowfish (Darius Rucker, Dean Felber, Jim ‘Soni’ Sonefeld, Mark Bryan), the Gatlin Brothers (Rudy and Steve Gatlin), Ben Wright, Jennifer Mills, George Rogers and Steve Bartkowski. Legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus was the featured golfer.
For more information on the BMW Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs golf tournament call (864) 297-1660 or visit the tournament’s website at www.bmwcharitygolf.com .