The 2011 John Deere Classic helped raise a record $5.29 million for nearly 500 local and regional charities.
MOLINE, Illinois (Oct. 31, 2011) – John Deere Classic officials today announced that the 2011 tournament helped raise a record $5.29 million for nearly 500 local and regional charities, a record increase of $950,000 over last year.
The John Deere Classic continues to rank No. 1 in per capita giving and among the top five in overall charity dollars raised by regular PGA TOUR events. This year's total translates to a contribution of a record $14.10 for every man, woman, and child living in the Quad Cities community based on a population of 375,000.
"The John Deere Classic is proud to have broken the $5 million mark in charitable giving for the first time in its 41-year history," said John Deere Classic tournament director Clair Peterson. "We also are pleased that despite operating in one of the PGA TOUR's smaller markets the John Deere Classic ranks among the top five on Tour in total charitable contributions."
The $5.29 million total includes 100 percent of every dollar raised through the highly successful Birdies for Charity program, according to Birdies for Charity director Kristy Ketcham Jackson. The total also includes an eight percent bonus from this year's tournament profits, meaning that each charity received $1.08 for every dollar pledged and collected on its behalf.
"The PGA TOUR would like to congratulate the John Deere Classic on its continued achievement in charitable giving," said PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem. "Everyone associated with the event – Deere & Company and other corporate sponsors, tournament staff and volunteers, and the fans who supported the tournament – are to be commended for their outstanding efforts in helping those in need in the Quad Cities."
Peterson noted that 2011 was the sixth consecutive year in which the John Deere Classic has exceeded $4 million in charity contributions.
"The consistency the John Deere Classic has had in raising such significant amounts of money for charity in difficult economic times is a tribute to the residents and businesses of the Quad Cities community whose generosity in times of need truly reflects the quality of their character both as individuals and commercial enterprises," Peterson said.
Following the announcement at the John Deere Pavilion in downtown Moline, checks were distributed to charity representatives in attendance. Charities that did not attend will receive their checks by mail.
Peterson also praised the tournament's1,200 volunteers, 70-plus corporate sponsors, and title sponsor, John Deere, which covers administrative costs of the Birdies for Charity program, so that 100 percent of dollars pledged go directly to participating charities.
"John Deere proves year after year to be a corporate citizen without peer," Peterson said. "This community is truly blessed."
Under the Birdies program, individuals and businesses may pledge based on the number of birdies recorded at the John Deere Classic or make a flat dollar donation. One hundred percent of every dollar pledged is distributed to the donors designated charity through Birdies for Charity. Many donors pledge to more than one charity.
As in 2010, Select Chevy dealers provided a new Camaro as a prize incentive to attract pledges to Birdies for Charity organizations. The John Deere Classic wishes to thank the following Chevy dealers:
- Bruce Foote Chevrolet, Monmouth, IL
- Deery Brothers, West Burlington, IA
- Eriksen Chevrolet, Milan, IL
- Green Chevrolet, East Moline, IL
- Kunes Country Auto Group, Mount Carroll, IL
- Lujack Chevrolet, Davenport, IA
- McEleney Auto Center, Clinton, IA
- Mills Chevrolet, Moline, IL
- Piehl Motors, Princeton, IL
- Shottenkirk Chevrolet, Mt. Pleasant, IA
- Yemm Chevrolet, Galesburg, IL
"Birdies for Charity is extremely grateful that this group of local Chevrolet dealers have made such a strong commitment to our program and to the hundreds of charities we serve in the Quad Cities and neighboring communities," said Ketcham Jackson. "The opportunity for Birdies for Charity donors to win a new Chevrolet Camaro adds an extra element of fun and excitement to the pledge drive and to tournament week itself."
PGA TOUR veteran Steve Stricker won the 2011 John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Ill. with a 22-under par total of 262 on rounds of 66-64-63-69. The first three-peat winner in tournament history, Stricker's final birdie putt from off the green was widely regarded at the most exciting finish on Tour this year.
The John Deere Classic, which includes Birdies for Charity, is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization located in the John Deere Classic tournament offices at 15623 Coaltown Road, East Moline, Illinois. Since 1993, the tournament has helped raise $42.29 million for charity.
Deere & Company (NYSE: DE) is a world leader in providing advanced products and services and is committed to the success of those whose work is linked to the land – those who cultivate, harvest, transform, enrich and build upon the land to meet the world's dramatically increasing need for food, fuel, shelter and infrastructure. Since 1837, John Deere has delivered innovative products of superior quality built on a tradition of integrity. For more information, visit John Deere at its worldwide website at www.JohnDeere.com.