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"Giving Week" Will Supplement Birdies for Charity Bonus Fund

Tournament Director Clair Peterson (left) and volunteer coordinator Pat Shouse announce this year's fundraising total for Birdies for Charity at Deere and Company Headquarters.
Lacy Scarmana
Tournament Director, Clair Peterson (left), & Tournament Chair, Pat Shouse, reveal the amount raised in 2017. (file)

The John Deere Classic is asking people and organizations to raise more money for 500 charities. On Media Day, the golf tournament announced it will hold "Giving Week" next month, to raise at least $1 million for the Birdies for Charity Bonus Fund.

The Deere Classic guarantees participating charities will receive an extra 5% from the bonus fund. But in recent years, it's been able to provide 10% more than the amount people pledge to the nonprofits.

Credit Michelle O'Neill / WVIK News
Tony Carpita, Tournament Chair (in charge of volunteers) on 4/9/2018 at Deere & Co. World Headquarters for the Birdies for Charity Kick-off.

Tournament Chair, Tony Carpita, says last year, Birdies for Charity raised $12.3 million. And going back to the Hardees days and the beginning of the tournament, the total will go over $100 million this year.

The Birdies for Charity Bonus Fund includes tournament revenue, plus contributions from the John Deere Foundation and others. The Deere Foundation also pays for all administrative costs associated with the birdies program. So all donations go directly to the nonprofits.

Giving Week will begin June 17th. Carpita and other tournament officials will help raise money by bartending at the Barrel House in Moline on the 21st.

From 1971 through last year, the PGA Tour competition has raised nearly $94 million for charity.

Officially, Michelle's title for 28 years was WVIK News Editor. She did everything there is to do in the newsroom and whatever was needed around the radio station. She also served as Acting News Director from September 2023 - January 2024.