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GOLF ASSOCIATION OF MICHIGAN

The First Tee of Benton Harbor to Provide On-Site Support for Senior PGA

BENTON HARBOR, Mich., May 8, 2012The PGA of America today announced its collaboration with The First Tee of Benton Harbor on-site during the 73rd Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid, which takes place May 22-27 in Benton Harbor, Mich. Volunteers and members from The First Tee of Benton Harbor will be responsible for selling Championship programs and hosting the participating player locker room facilities in The First Tee Academy at Harbor Shores. In addition, a majority of the volunteer standard bearers from the Championship are current participants of The First Tee of Benton Harbor.

“The First Tee of Benton Harbor is extremely excited to be part of the upcoming Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid,” said Ebon Sanders, executive director of The First Tee of Benton Harbor. “We’re looking forward to giving our members the opportunity to volunteer on-site at Harbor Shores, and create long-lasting memories through the game of golf.”

Volunteers from The First Tee of Benton Harbor will sell programs for the Senior PGA Championship from Monday, May 21 through Sunday, May 27. From their sales efforts, 50 percent of program sales will be donated back to The First Tee of Benton Harbor. Parents of The First Tee participants will lead the program sales efforts from Tuesday-Friday during Championship week, and junior participants will be responsible for selling programs from Saturday-Sunday.

Program sales will take place at the main entrance of Harbor Shores and the practice range, as well as various locations throughout the course. To prepare for the Championship, all junior volunteers from The First Tee will attend two training sessions at Harbor Shores. During these sessions, participants will learn basic sales techniques, familiarize themselves with the golf course and practice accessing the on-course trolley systems provided by The PGA of America.

“During the planning stages for this Championship, The PGA of America and The First Tee of Benton Harbor have developed and maintained a very strong relationship,” said Jeff Hintz, championship director for the 73rd Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid. “We’re excited to have so many members from The First Tee of Benton Harbor volunteer during the Championship, and we are pleased to support such a successful junior program in the community.”

Harbor Shores is the host site of The First Tee of Benton Harbor, and during the Championship, the new 2,500-square foot academy building will be used as a locker room for the participating players. To show their support for the Championship, participants from The First Tee of Benton Harbor will submit hand-written letters to each player in the field that will be placed inside the lockers.

The First Tee of Benton Harbor began its programming in January 2005. Children ages six through 17 can join The First Tee of Benton Harbor for $20 annually, and scholarships are available for those individuals who qualify. This fee also pays for a membership to the Boys and Girls Club of Benton Harbor, granting the youth access to all of their summer programs and activities. A graduate of St. Joseph High School, Sanders has been the Executive Director of The First Tee of Benton Harbor since its inception in 2004, and also serves as an Assistant Golf Professional at Harbor Shores.

Registration for upcoming summer programs at The First Tee of Benton Harbor is currently underway. Parents can register their children for the program for $20 at http://www.thefirstteebentonharbor.org/club/scripts/section/section.asp?NS=GPI.

Tickets for the 73rd Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid are available online at http://www.SPGA2012.com or by calling 800-PGA-GOLF.

For more information about The First Tee of Benton Harbor, please visit http://www.thefirstteebentonharbor.org, and for more information about the 73rd Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid, please visit http://www.SPGA2012.com.

About The PGA of America
Since its founding in 1916, The PGA of America has maintained a twofold mission: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf. By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, The PGA enables its professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in the multi-billion dollar golf industry. By creating and delivering world-class championships and innovative programs, The PGA of America elevates the public’s interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere. As The PGA nears its centennial, the PGA brand represents the very best in golf.

About The First Tee of Benton Harbor
The First Tee of Benton Harbor (TFTBH) is a chapter of The First Tee, a national 501(C)3 nonprofit youth development organization.  Chartered in 2004 with programming beginning in 2005, the mission of TFTBH is to positively impact the lives of our local youth by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values, and promote future potential through the game of golf. TFTBH works with over 2000 youth from throughout Southwest Michigan every year with a special emphasis on the young population in Benton Harbor.  For more information, volunteering opportunities or to donate, visit www.thefirstteebentonharbor.org, call (269) 927-4653 or email [email protected].

About KitchenAid
Since the introduction of its legendary stand mixer in 1919 and first dishwasher in 1949, KitchenAid has built on the legacy of these icons to create a complete line of products designed for cooks. Over 90 years later, the KitchenAid brand now offers virtually every essential for the well-equipped kitchen with a collection that includes everything from countertop appliances to cookware, ranges to refrigerators, and whisks to wine cellars. To learn why chefs choose KitchenAid for their homes more than any other brand, visit www.KitchenAid.com

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