After 26 years and gifting almost $13 million to children’s charities, there is no doubt that the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper is a powerhouse. Its Executive Director hopes the community will join the tournament – a PGA Web.com Tour event – once again for a memorable summer.
“The Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper clearly is a passion of this community and has been for 26 years now. Over the years, we’ve heard stories that tug at your heart strings, as money from the PCCC has greatly supported the missions of local charities,” Tournament Executive Director Jerald Andrews said. “We ask the community to join us in this year’s effort.”
Andrews offered those words Monday during the tournament’s Media Day presented by the H.O.P.E. Foundation. The event came only six weeks before Highland Springs Country Club plays host to the 27th PCCC and sets out to aid 43 local children’s charities. Last year alone, the tournament gifted $900,145. This year, the theme is “Rising Stars, Raising Hopes.”
Thus, with tournament-related events beginning in full the week of Aug. 1 – and with the pros playing Aug. 11-14 at Highland Springs – the next few weeks are an important time as the tournament:
- Fills remaining on-course sponsorships. Businesses have a number of ways to expand the reach of their brand through the tournament by sponsoring bleachers, water coolers and much more.
- Books corporate skyboxes on the ninth and 18th greens, and tents on the 18th fairway. These include covered seating and all-inclusive badges into the Jackson Brothers of the South VIP tent.
- Fills team spots in 12 golf tournaments, including 10 pro-ams, with most played in the days leading up to the tournament. This is a chance to play with pros, including at Highland Springs on the day before the PCCC, or area courses such as Buffalo Ridge Golf Course or LedgeStone Country Club, Hickory Hills Country Club and Millwood Golf & Racquet Club.
- Sells TLC Properties Charity Sweepstakes tickets: They are $25, and gives the ticket-buyer a chance to win a brand new Ford F-150, or $10,000, plus daily prizes during the tournament.
- Readies for the Golf Ball & Charity Auction: This event, sponsored by Copy Products Inc. and University Plaza, is a great couples’ event on Aug. 9. Up for auction in recent years were experiences such as TPC Sawgrass as well as Casa Suenos, a seaside resort in Mexico.
Such events have built the PCCC’s enormous reach throughout the Ozarks. That reach cannot be underscored enough, according to directors of four charities who spoke at Monday’s Media Day.
The H.O.P.E. Foundation, which formed in 2009, financially aids families facing pediatric emergencies. For instance, it covers fuel costs for trips to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital in Memphis and St. Louis Children’s Hospital. In essence, families can focus on their children’s emergency rather than financial worries.
“We’ve seen a lot of growth over the last few years, and a lot of it is because of the Price Cutter Charity Championship,” said Mary Hankins, Executive Director of the H.O.P.E. Foundation. “It was huge. We didn’t do a lot of marketing before. Now it is 25 percent of our fundraising every year.”
The Fellowship of Christian Athletes, whose southwest Missouri chapter is one of the PCCC’s four original charities, puts its PCCC donation to use far and wide. It reaches out to coaches and student-athletes in middle schools, high schools and colleges, and focuses on ways each can handle situations on and off the field in an effort to boost confidence. Student-led campus huddles, for instance, meet once a week. Or, FCA staff will meet with a coach before school and discuss ways to handle challenges.
“This tournament allows us to remain fully funded,” said Dan MacLachlan, Area Director of FCA and a former football and track & field coach at Glendale and Strafford high schools. “Sports reveal character in individual athletes, and (FCA) is a great medium in learning how successful they can be.”
Music Therapy of the Ozarks, founded in 2014 by Julie Cassity, is new to the tournament. The charity aims to aid special needs children as well as adults in assisted living through music. For instance, studies have shown children with autism sing before speaking. Thus, Music Therapy of the Ozarks plans to use PCCC dollars toward scholarships for special needs kids to attend music therapy sessions at Drury University. The charity is run on a volunteer basis.
“It’s become very apparent to me, in running a music clinic, that people could not afford music therapy because it isn’t covered by insurance,” said Cassity, Clinical Director of Music Therapy at Drury University. “And most families, when they have special needs children, they are usually strapped for money.”
Children’s Smile Center helped more than 6,200 children receive quality dental care last year. Some 60 to 70 percent of kids in area small towns rely on Medicaid. Unfortunately, only 10 percent of Missouri dentists accept Medicaid, said Executive Director Jackie Barger.
“The PCCC impacts our non-profit in so many ways, not only the direct financial support, but also with great exposure and networking,” Barger said. “This is a first-class fundraising event, and Children’s Smile Center is a better charitable organization through our affiliation with the PCCC. Sponsors, donors and attendees can be confident that their involvement is directly impacting the lives of thousands of children who receive quality dental care through our non-profit clinics.”
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