BMW Presents the BUY.COM TOUR Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs Golf Tournament Raises $500,000 for Charity
The inaugural BMW Presents the BUY.COM TOUR Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs golf tournament raised $500,000 for 30 charities, the most ever for a first-time BUY.COM TOUR event.
Charitable contributions for the tournament totaled $432,979.01. Jim Anthony, President of The Cliffs Communities, approved an additional contribution of $67,020.99 to raise the total contribution to an even $500,000.
“The tournament was a tremendous success,” Tournament Director Darin MacDonald said. “The fans were great, and the golf was exceptional. We are already looking forward to a bigger and better event next year.”
Attendance also exceeded expectations. Tournament officials expected 20,000 people for the four-day event. Estimates place attendance at over 25,000. According to PGA TOUR officials, Friday’s estimated 12,000 fans was a record turnout for a first-time BUY.COM TOUR event.
In the BMW Charity Cup division actor Kevin Costner’s first place finish earned the St. Francis Bone Marrow Transplant Wing $15,000. Country musician Rudy Gatlin’s second place finish earned $10,000 for charity. Former University of South Carolina running back and Heisman Trophy winner George Rogers requested the $6,000 third place prize be divided equally between Miracle Hill and Make-A-Wish Foundation. Tad Moore’s fourth-place finish earned $4,000 for the Cancer Society of Greenville. Actor Kevin Dillon earned $2,500 for St. Josephs High School.
In addition to funds being directed to the various charities by the celebrity performances, each of the 30 charities chosen by the board of directors of South Carolina Charities, Inc. received a portion of the $500,000.
The 30 charities that benefited from the golf tournament are: Camperdown Academy; Greenville School District; Peace Center Outreach Program; Pinnacle Point; Foothills Rape Crisis Center; Eblen Foundation Children’s Charities; Blue Ridge Council of the Boy Scouts of America; Camp Courage; Cancer Society of Greenville County; Center for Developmental Services; St. Anthony of Padua School; Muscular Dystrophy Association; St. Francis Bone Marrow Transplant Wing; Ronald McDonald House; Greenville Hospital System Foundation; Phillis Wheatley Association; St. Joseph’s High School; Metropolitan Arts Council; Greenville Family Partnership; Easter Seals of Greenville; Compass of Carolina; Greenville Sexual Trauma Center; Miracle Hill Ministries; Greenville Chapter of the American Red Cross; Meyer Center for Special Children; Make-A-Wish Foundation; Good Shepard Free Medical Clinic; First Tee; Habitat for Humanity; The Village School.
Former Clemson University golfer Jonathan Byrd won the professional BUY.COM TOUR event. It was Byrd’s first win on the tour and netted the 23-year-old youngster $90,000. South African Brenden Pappas finished second, one stroke behind Byrd, and took home $54,000. Sonny Skinner and Matt Peterson tied for third and earned $29,000.
The inaugural BMW Presents the BUY.COM TOUR Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs was the first BUY.COM TOUR event to feature amateurs and celebrities grouped with professionals for three days of golf. Other celebrities that appeared included former Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino, baseball Hall-of-Famer Johnny Bench, actors John O’Hurley and Jack Wagner, and musician Edwin McCain.
The $500,000 tournament, held at Cliffs Valley and The Cliffs at Keowee Vineyards courses, paired 156 professionals with an amateur/celebrity partner in a two-day, best-ball competition. The 10 best teams (five best Pro-Am and five best Pro-Celeb) advanced to play for the BMW Charity Cup on Saturday.