PGA TOUR Champions and Ascension announce new St. Louis event to debut in 2020

18 Dec, 2019

PGA TOUR Champions and Ascension announced a four-year partnership to host a new professional golf tournament in St. Louis. The Ascension Charity Classic will debut September 28 – October 4, 2020 at Norwood Hills Country Club in North County. It’s the first time the PGA TOUR has hosted an annual event in the St. Louis region since 2001, and the first major sporting event in recent times to be hosted in North County.

This 54-hole stroke play golf tournament will feature World Golf Hall of Fame members and many of the top PGA TOUR Champions professionals competing in this inaugural championship. The Ascension Charity Classic will be the latest addition to the PGA TOUR Champions schedule which includes 27 tournaments in four countries and 19 states. 

PGA TOUR Champions President, Miller Brady; Ascension Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Nick Ragone; World Golf Hall of Fame member Hale Irwin; and three-time PGA TOUR Champions winner, Billy Andrade, were featured speakers at today’s announcement in St. Louis.

“We’re thrilled to bring the Ascension Charity Classic to St. Louis, and particularly to North County at Norwood Hills,” said PGA TOUR Champions President, Miller Brady. “The St. Louis area is one of the great sports regions in the United States, known for its passionate, dedicated fans and history of charitable giving and community engagement. This combination of great sports fans, community engagement and charitable giving is what the PGA TOUR is all about, and this will quickly become one of our premier events.”

“We wanted to host the Ascension Charity Classic at Norwood Hills because we know that it can serve as a catalyst to support the revitalization of North St. Louis County, including the Ferguson, Florissant and Jennings communities that neighbor the Norwood Hills Country Club,” said Nick Ragone, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Ascension. “Players may compete, but the real winners will be North County and area charities.  All proceeds will go to charitable organizations in the North County area that are working to build a better community.  It’s a privilege to be able to be a part of the continued revitalization of our community and our region.” 

At today’s announcement, several charities were named as beneficiaries of the tournament, including Marygrove, a residential facility for children and teens; the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis; and Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis. 

“Our mission at Marygrove is to help children, teens and young adults learn how to overcome an abusive past and move towards a brighter future,” commented Joseph Bestgen, Marygrove CEO. “We’re able to enrich the lives of over 1,100 young people in this community each year with the help of individuals and organizations, like Ascension, who are committed to this cause.”

The event will be managed by HNS Sports Group with Barney Hinkle serving as the Tournament Director and Tim Heitmann as Assistant Tournament Director.

Tournaments for Charity, a 501(c)(3) non-profit entity, will serve as the tournament’s host organization.

Norwood Hills Country Club, which was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005, hosted the 1948 PGA Championship (won by World Golf Hall of Fame member Ben Hogan) and the PGA TOUR’s Greater St. Louis Golf Classic in 1972 and 1973. PGA TOUR Champions contested the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Match Play Championship at Boone Valley Golf Club in nearby Augusta, Missouri, from 1996 through 2001.

The announcement sets the foundation for an exciting tenure of PGA TOUR Champions golf in St. Louis as some of golf’s biggest names prepare to turn 50 in the coming year. World Golf Hall of Fame member Ernie Els, 17-time PGA TOUR winner Jim Furyk, 2003 Masters champion Mike Weir, eight-time TOUR winner K.J. Choi and World Golf Hall of Fame member Phil Mickelson will all celebrate their 50th birthdays over the next 12 months.

All rounds of the Ascension Charity Classic will be broadcast on Golf Channel. Internationally, telecasts air in excess of 170 countries and territories, reaching more than 340 million potential households, and distributed in 15+ markets via GOLFTV.

For more information visit the Ascension Charity Classic website at www.ascensioncharityclassic.com and follow the tournament on Twitter at @ascensionccg, on Facebook at facebook.com/ascensioncharityclassic and Instagram @ascensioncharityclassic.

For information on sponsorship opportunities, please contact Barney Hinkle at bhinkle@ascensioncharityclassic.com.


About Ascension
Based in St. Louis, Ascension is one of the leading non-profit and Catholic health systems in the U.S., with more than 150,000 associates and 2,600 sites of care across 21 states and the District of Columbia. In keeping with the organization’s mission to deliver compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable, all proceeds from the Ascension Charity Classic tournament will be donated to local nonprofits. Last year, Ascension provided $2 billion in care of the poor and other community benefit. 

About PGA TOUR Champions
PGA TOUR Champions is a membership organization of professional golfers age 50 and older, including 33 members of the World Golf Hall of Fame. The Tour’s mission is to provide financial opportunities for its players, entertain and inspire its fans, deliver substantial value to its partners, create outlets for volunteers to give back and generate significant charitable and economic impact in tournament communities. In 2019, the PGA TOUR Champions schedule includes 27 tournaments across the United States, Japan, England and Canada, with purses totaling nearly $58 million. The Charles Schwab Cup, which includes the Regular Season and the Charles Schwab Cup Playoffs, is used to determine the season-long champion. All events are televised in the United States, with most receiving complete coverage on Golf Channel, the exclusive cable-television partner of PGA TOUR Champions. Internationally, telecasts air in excess of 170 countries and territories, reaching more than 340 million potential households, and distributed in 15+ markets via GOLFTV. Follow PGA TOUR Champions online at PGATOUR.com, at facebook.com/PGATOURChampions, on Twitter @ChampionsTour and on Instagram @pgatourchampions.

About HNS Sports Group
HNS Sports Group is a Dublin, Ohio-based LLC founded in 2000. The company offers over 125-plus years of collective experience and is committed to providing professional, efficient and effective client representation in the categories of sponsorship consultation, event management, hospitality management, sales representation and tournament operations within the golf market. To learn more about HNS Sports Group, visit www.hnssports.com.


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