Golf tournament looks to help dozens of local charities

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ)- The Barbasol Championship PGA Tour stop is this week out at Champions at Keene Trace in Nicholasville.

The event is expected to draw tens of thousands of people to central Kentucky and, in addition to some great golf, it’s expected to be a big boost for local charities.

While pro golfers will be competing for a $3.5 million purse on the green, off the course, close to 170 non-profits from around Kentucky have partnered with the tournament’s charity event, Birdies for the Bluegrass.

“Birdies for the bluegrass is a really fun way to participate in this golf event whether you know anything about golf or not,” said Brooks Downing, executive director of the Barbasol Championship.

How it works is people pledge a certain amount of money for every birdie made by the players during the tournament, that money will go to the charity of that person’s choice and the person will be entered in to a drawing for a new Lexus.

“You can pledge a penny, a dime, a dollar, ten dollars a birdie. Whatever’s in your budget,” said Downing.

Organizers say they’re hoping to raise anywhere from a couple hundred-thousand dollars to a couple million and are excited for not only those donations but the awareness this event will bring to all these charities.

“I think it will allow a lot of individuals out there who may be coming to the birdies for the bluegrass website to learn about some non-profit organizations and causes that maybe they haven’t heard from before and maybe they’ll start supporting them more regularly,” said Scott Fitzpatrick with the Blue Grass Community Foundation.

Organizers say similar charities at other PGA tournaments have brought in more than $10 million.

“If I just make a piece of that for our community, we’ll have crushed it. But that’s what we want to do is try to grow this thing into being the largest fundraiser in the bluegrass,” said Downing.

Those wanting to participate in the Birdies for the Bluegrass fundraiser have until Friday night to enter.

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