JOHN DEERE CLASSIC BIRDIES FOR CHARITY PROGRAM KICKS OFF 2021 FUNDRAISING DRIVE
Smart Lexus of Quad Cities to provide 2021 Lexus NX to a Lucky Donor
The John Deere Classic’s Birdies for Charity program today officially kicked off its annual drive to help raise donations for more than 450 Quad City area charities while also announcing several procedural changes.
The charity kickoff comes as tournament organizers plan to welcome back a limited number of fans to TPC Deere Run after the tournament was canceled last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite having no tournament, the John Deere Classic still delivered $12.2 million to 465 organizations through its Birdies for Charity program in 2020. This year’s tournament is scheduled for July 8-11.
“We are excited to kick off our annual Birdies for Charity fundraising effort today as we prepare to welcome back fans and sponsors to TPC Deere Run this summer with the highest safety standards in place,” John Deere Classic tournament director Clair Peterson said at a news conference at Smart Lexus of Quad Cities in Davenport.
“Best of all, we are promising that each participating organization will again be paid a minimum of a 5% bonus on all monies collected on their behalf,” Peterson said. “Tournament revenue is a key component in the Birdies for Charity model, and we are optimistic that having fans back will help us do even better than we did in 2020.
Today, Peterson announced a few notable changes to the Birdies program dictated by continuing safety considerations:
- Donation amounts no longer will be tied to the number of birdies recorded by tournament contestants. Instead, donors are asked to make a flat donation to the charity of their choice. This will make for fewer touchpoints and quicker post-tournament reconciliation.
- Donors will still be able to guess the total number of birdies Tour pros will record in the Wednesday Pro-Am and the 72-hole tournament for a chance to win a two-year lease on a 2021 Lexus NX.
- Because of capacity limitations no complimentary tickets will be issued. This will apply to charity tickets, donation requests and Partner Program credentials.
- The deadline for contest and Partner donations is June 21, 2021.
- All pledge forms are available at www.birdiesforcharity.com. There will be no in-person pickup.
John Deere underwrites all administrative expenses for the Birdies program, making it possible for 100 percent of every donation – and a minimum five percent bonus - to go to each donor’s designated charity.
As an incentive to attract charity donations, Smart Lexus of Quad Cities again has generously agreed to provide a two-year lease of a 2021 Lexus NX to one donor who correctly guesses the exact number of birdies recorded at this year’s tournament.
Smart Lexus of Quad Cities also will continue to furnish courtesy cars to John Deere Classic contestants during the week of the tournament.
“We are pleased to have Smart Lexus of Quad Cities return as our automotive partner again this year,” Peterson said. “The free two-year lease contest for the Lexus NX provides a tremendous incentive for people to donate. And we know the pros love driving a Lexus during tournament week.”
The John Deere Classic, which includes Birdies for Charity, is a 501(C)3 non-profit organization located in the John Deere Classic tournament offices at 15623 Coaltown Road, East Moline, Illinois. Since its founding in 1971, the tournament has helped raise $133.09 million for charity, more than 99 percent of the total coming since John Deere took over the title sponsorship in 1998.