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Northern Trust Open Honors the Military

Chris Condon-PGA TOUR

February 15, 2011


PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif.—As part of the PGA TOUR’s support for Birdies for the Brave, the Northern Trust Open kicked off a week-long series of military outreach activities commencing Feb. 15.

Starting activities included a special golf reception for hundreds of local veterans at the West Los Angeles Fisher House, located on the grounds of the Veterans’ Administration Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System. 

The reception, hosted by NBA legend and Northern Trust Open Executive Director Jerry West, featured live entertainment by the Chris Anderson Group band, dinner compliments of Chick-fil-A, golf-skills games, a special dedication ceremony and an opportunity for veterans to try and beat the scores of West and PGA TOUR players on a nine-hole miniature golf course.

Joining West at the event included PGA TOUR players Kris Blanks, Bill Lunde and Zack Miller; Bubba Watson’s caddie, Ted Scott; PGA TOUR Golf Course Properties President David Pillsbury; Northern Trust Open General Manager Mike Bone; Northern Trust President Rick Waddell; President, Southern California at Northern Trust Susan Mallory; VA Greater Los Angeles Executive Director Donna Beiter and numerous political representatives, including J.D. Kennedy, field representative for military affairs in U.S. Congressman Buck McKeon’s office. Kennedy presented a proclamation to the Northern Trust Open on behalf of Congressman McKeon.

Several thousand veterans served by the VA Greater Los Angeles healthcare system have been invited to attend the tournament this week at the Riviera Country Club. All active-duty, retired and reserve military members and their dependents are also welcome to attend the tournament, free of charge, as guests of Birdies for the Brave and the Northern Trust Open. All military guests and veterans tournament-goers will enjoy complimentary access to the Birdies for the Brave Patriots’ Outpost, a military hospitality chalet located adjacent to the 10th green at Riviera.

Other military appreciation activities taking place this week include the opportunity for military members to caddie on the 10th green during the pro-am. Wounded warrior Sgt. Michael Garcia, severely injured in Iraq, will tee up alongside PGA TOUR player Luke Donald in the pro-am. Joining the threesome on No. 10 will be a fan who bid and won the opportunity to caddie for a PGA TOUR player during a tournament through the Caddy for a Cure online fundraiser.

Military appreciation activities will crescendo on Feb. 19, Military Appreciation Day. End-of-play ceremonies on the 18th green will feature the singing of “The Star Spangled Banner” by 146th Airlift Wing TSgt. Erin McPherson.

Birdies for the Brave was originally created five years ago by Phil Mickelson and his wife, Amy, to support military members wounded in combat. Since then, the PGA TOUR has lent its support by joining with PGA TOUR players, corporate partners, tournament fans and TPC club members to raise more than $5.4 million for military home-front groups through charity golf events hosted at TPC clubs nationwide. 

READ MORE ABOUT: Kris Blanks , Genesis Open , Military , TPCs
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