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The BMW Charity Pro-Am

Charity Pro-Am golf tournament

The BMW Charity Pro-Am golf tournament has a long and storied history in the Upstate of South Carolina. This is a very unique event on the tour. Presented by SYNNEX Corporation, the event has raised over $11 million for 16 Upstate charities since 2001.

The history of the event goes back to 1992 when the Nike Tour was played at Verdae Greens and David Toms was one of the winners. Verdae Greens is now known as the Preserve at Verdae and is one of the host courses, along with Thornblade Club and Furman Golf Club, all in Greenville. From the Nike Tour to to Nationwide and now the tour, every single winner of the tournament since 1992 has played on the PGA Tour. Some of the past winners include Jonathan Byrd and Charles Warren - two Clemson golfers who won back-to-back in 2001 and 2002, Tripp Isenhour (2003), Ryuji Imada (2004), Ken Duke (2006), Nick Flanagan (2007 and 2012)), Michael Sim (2009), Garth Mulroy (2011) and Ron Pampling (2015).

The event turned to a pro-am format in 2001 and was hosted on the Cliffs golf courses. Other courses were added over the years such as Carolina Country Club, Greenville Country Club and others. Many celebrities played, including Kevin Costner, Kurt Russell, Catherine Bell, John O’Hurley, Steve Spurrier, Lucas Black, Grant Show along with many professional athletes and musicians.

In 2004, two pretty big names helped put the tour “on the map.” World Golf Hall of Famers Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player teed it up in the BMW Charity Classic. The tournament has received the Tour’s Best Player Experience award two years in a row (2015 and 2016) as voted by the Tour pros. And, with so many international players involved, the Golf Channel televises the tournament worldwide.

The fun, laid-back side of the tournament, this year May 15-21, starts with events in downtown Greenville. On Thursday of tournament week, members of Hootie and the Blowfish and Rascal Flatts get together for an always fun concert. Various parties and auctions are held in beautiful downtown Greenville. The BMW Pro-Am presented by SYNNES Corporation is a pretty big deal in the Upstate every spring and the numerous charities benefit from it all year