Memorable week of golf raises funds for Meijer Simply Give program to restock Midwest food pantries
Representatives with the Meijer LPGA Classic presented by Kraft today deemed the second annual tournament a success with a $750,000 donation to the retailer’s Simply Give program, which advances its mission of helping Midwest food pantries restock their shelves and improve the quality of life within the region. American LPGA professional Lexi Thompson of Coral Springs, Fla. took home the trophy at the LPGA Tour event, which took place at Blythefield Country Club July 23-26, but the real winners are the families who will benefit from the donation.
“Thanks to the great weather and enthusiastic crowds, the second annual Meijer LPGA Classic presented by Kraft was a complete success and will continue improving the quality of life in the Midwest,” Meijer President J.K. Symancyk said. “Everyone who has supported the tournament has helped make a difference because this week was about more than world-class golf. It was an opportunity for the entire community to come together to have fun while supporting a very important cause – feeding the hungry.”
While attendance figures are not yet available, representatives said the tournament continued to exceed expectations.
Meijer began its Simply Give program in November 2008 and has since generated more than $16 million for its food pantry partners. The contributions donated as a result of the Meijer LPGA Classic are due, in large part, to the generous Meijer customers who attended the tournament week events, and the sponsors who helped make the event a success.
The $750,000 donation will be divided among the retailer’s estimated 200 food pantry partners participating in the fall Simply Give campaign, which runs through Sept. 12.
“We receive about two-third of our funding for food purchases through the Meijer Simply Give program,” said Mark Tallis, of the Holt Community Food Bank. “We appreciate Meijer for having the Simply Give program because it gives us the ability to help our families with more food and keep them stable so that the children in our community are not going hungry.”
To participate in the Simply Give program, customers can purchase a $10 donation card at their local Meijer store, which will be converted into a Meijer food-only gift card and given to the food pantry selected by the store. Meijer will stretch every customer’s donation further during Double Match Days Sept. 3-5 in recognition of Hunger Action Month. That means for every $10 donation card purchase, Meijer will contribute $20, resulting in a total $30 donation.
A crowd of enthusiastic fans lined the ropes at Blythefield Country Club July 23-26 to watch a competitive field of 144 world-class golfers play 72 holes of stroke play. Ultimately, Lexi Thompson claimed the title as the Meijer LPGA Classic champion, making this her fifth LPGA Tour victory. At age 12, she was the youngest golfer ever to qualify to play in the U.S. Women’s Open.
Thompson said it was important to start the tournament well.
“I knew I had to make birdies against everybody in the field basically with Lizette (Salas) and then Gerina (Piller) behind me, so I knew I had to make a lot of birdies out there and it’s always nice to start off with one,” Thompson said.