PGA TOUR stars and celebrities will once again descend upon the Tulsa area to help military families by participating in the fourth annual Patriot Cup on May 27 at The Patriot Golf Club in Owasso. Tickets for the golf event are $35 each for adults and are available through www.thepatriotcup.com. Children 16 and under, as well as active and non-active military personnel with military ID, are free.
Sponsored by Budweiser, the Patriot Cup pairs each of the participating 38 TOUR players and celebrities with an active or non-active military golfer and a Folds of Honor donor in a three-player match play event, pitting the Air Force against the other three divisions of the Armed Forces (Army, Marines and Navy). The competition will be filmed by NBC Sports/Golf Channel for a special to air later in the year.
The Patriot Cup benefits Owasso-based Folds of Honor Foundation, an organization founded by Major Dan Rooney that provides educational scholarships to the spouses and dependents of military members killed or disabled while serving our great nation. Now in its fourth year, the event continues to draw the top names in golf. Some of those committed for 2013 include Bo Van Pelt, Gary Woodland, Corey Pavin, Tom Lehman and Craig Stadler. Celebrity participants include Craig T. Nelson and David Feherty.
“This event offers area golf fans their only opportunity to see golf stars like Bo Van Pelt, Gary Woodland, Tom Lehman and others tee it up in their backyard,” said Rooney, a former F-16 fighter pilot. “The Patriot Cup has evolved into an event embraced by the community. I can’t think of a better way for families to spend Memorial Day than celebrating God, our country and the game of golf.
“The feeling of patriotism rings throughout the course during the Patriot Cup. From the bells tolling at 1300 to the scholarship families and members of the military on-hand, there are constant reminders that freedom is not free,” he added.
Founded by Rooney in 2007, Folds of Honor has raised more than $25 million and awarded more than 3,800 scholarships. “With more than one million dependents of fallen or wounded military service men and women from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts alone and 87 percent not qualifying for federal educational assistance, there is much work to be done,” he added.
The Patriot Cup marks the kick-off of a Red, White & Blue Summer for Budweiser, and the famed Clydesdales will be a part of the pageantry at The Patriot Golf Club. Throughout the summer, Budweiser will feature Folds of Honor tribute cans, long necks and tap-toppers. For every case of Budweiser sold between Memorial Day and the Fourth of July, the company will donate $.05 to Folds of Honor.
Parking for spectators is available at no additional cost at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino or Stone Canyon Elementary with complimentary transportation to and from the course. Food and beverage vendors will be located at the course. Tickets can be purchased through The Joint ticket office at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino or by visiting www.thepatriotcup.com.
The event will be hosted at The Patriot Golf Club, a Robert Trent Jones Jr.-designed course that opened in 2010. Each hole of this unique course carries the name of a great patriot, including George Washington, Martin Luther King Jr., and the Wright Brothers, to name a few.
This site is also the location of the Folds of Honor Foundation headquarters. Each day at 1300 (1 p.m.), the Foundation bell rings 13 times, signifying the 13 folds that form the triangle shape of the flag. At this time, everyone on the property pauses to remember that freedom is not free.
As part of its Memorial Day weekend celebration, Owasso-based Folds of Honor Foundation will once again host the Patriot Cup Gala, followed by a concert featuring country music star Dierks Bentley, on Monday, May 27 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Catoosa. A limited number of tickets to the gala and concert are available to the public for $300 and can be purchased through “The Joint” ticket office or at www.thepatriotcup.com.
The gala serves as the closing ceremony for the Patriot Cup. Beginning at 5 p.m., it will feature a dinner and awards presentation followed by a benefit concert hosted by Bentley. During the gala, the fourth annual Corporal Brock Bucklin Patriot Award will be presented to golf legend Jack Nicklaus. Previous winners include former President George H. W. Bush (2010), PGA TOUR Player Corey Pavin (2011) and country music star Vince Gill (2012).
“Corporal Brock Bucklin and his family are the inspiration for everything we do and this is the most prestigious award given by our foundation,” said Rooney. “Jack Nicklaus is not only the greatest golfer to ever live, but more importantly he is one of the greatest people I’ve met. With the support he gives to charities across the country, including many military-related organizations, he is truly deserving of this honor.”
The Corporal Brock Bucklin Patriot Award is presented to an individual who displays unwavering, meritorious and extraordinary qualities of leadership, service and dedication to advancing genuine patriotism in America. Corporal Bucklin sacrificed his life in defense of America’s freedoms. His sacrifice is memorialized in this award. The recipient of this award recognizes such sacrifices, and supports those who have made them. The characteristics of this prestigious award are in keeping with the best traditions of the United States of America, its founders and its defenders. Bucklin’s son, Jacob Green, was the first scholarship recipient from the Folds of Honor Foundation.
Nicklaus is a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame and a renowned golf course designer. He won 120 tournaments as a professional including 73 on the PGA Tour and a record 18 major championships, including four U.S. Opens. On the Champions Tour, he claimed another 10 tournaments including a record eight majors (two U.S. Senior Opens). He played on the U.S. Ryder Cup team six times, was twice named Captain of the U.S. squad and was a two-time member of the Walker Cup team. He is the chief designer of nearly 290 courses around the world and his company, Nicklaus Design, has designed more than 365 courses in 34 countries. He has been heavily involved with The First Tee programs, has been a passionate supporter of several growth-of-the-game initiatives, and has contributed greatly to pediatric health care in Florida and nationally through the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation.
The benefit concert hosted by Dierks Bentley in “The Joint” of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino will begin following the award presentation at approximately 8:30 p.m. Bentley has written and recorded 10 no. 1 hits and has recently released a new album, “Home.”