Bernhard Langer, defending champion Scott McCarron highlight 2017 Principal Charity Classic field.

The Principal Charity Classic®, presented by Wells Fargo, is pleased to announce the player field for this year’s tournament, set for June 6-11 at historic Wakonda Club near downtown Des Moines.

The Principal Charity Classic was named the PGA TOUR Champions Tournament of the Year in 2016 and has raised nearly $10 million to benefit Iowa children’s charities in the past decade.

Defending tournament champion Scott McCarron, now a three-time PGA TOUR Champions winner after earning his first career PGA TOUR Champions victory at the 2016 Principal Charity Classic, will be joined by 77 additional competitors, including:

  • Bernhard Langer, the 2016 PGA TOUR Champions Player of the Year and defending Charles Schwab Cup champion. The two-time Masters champion and World Golf Hall of Fame member has 32 career PGA TOUR Champions wins, the second-highest total in TOUR history (Hale Irwin leads with 45). With his recent victory at the 2017 KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship, Langer became the first player to win all five majors on the PGA TOUR Champions and surpassed Jack Nicklaus’ record for the most senior major titles (Langer now has nine total). Langer last competed in the Principal Charity Classic in 2015.
  • Past Principal Charity Classic champions Mark Calcavecchia (’15), Russ Cochran (’13), Jay Haas (’07, ’08, ’12), Bob Gilder (’02, ’11) and Tom Pernice, Jr. (‘14).
  • PGA TOUR Champions rookies Jerry Kelly, a native of Madison, Wisconsin, and David Toms, winner of the 2001 PGA Championship and 13 career PGA TOUR events.
  • Perennial fan favorites Fred Funk, Tom Lehman, Jesper Parnevik, Fuzzy Zoeller and Billy Andrade, who set a new Wakonda Club course record (63) during the second round of the 2016 Principal Charity Classic.
  • Iowa native Jerry Smith, a 2017 inductee into the Iowa Golf Hall of Fame. Smith, who received a sponsor exemption to play in the 2014 Principal Charity Classic, went on to earn PGA TOUR Champions Rookie of the Year honors in 2015. He has played in the Principal Charity Classic for the past three years, with a best finish of T14 in 2016.

Also included in the 2017 Principal Charity Classic field are five players who received sponsor exemptions: Jay Don Blake, owner of more than three dozen top-10 career finishes in official PGA TOUR events; Damon Green, past Principal Charity Classic participant (’11, ’12) and professional caddie for PGA TOUR star and Iowa native Zach Johnson; Gary Hallberg, one of only 12 players to win a tournament on the PGA TOUR, Web.com Tour and PGA TOUR Champions; Brian Henninger, two-time PGA TOUR winner and second-place finisher at the 2015 Principal Charity Classic; and Lonnie Nielsen, Iowa native and member of the Iowa Golf Hall of Fame.

Principal Charity Classic tickets start at just $20, and may be purchased online at www.principalcharityclassic.com or at the tournament gates. Kids 15 and under may attend the tournament for free if accompanied by a ticketed adult. Complimentary admission is also provided for all active duty, retired and reserve military along with their dependents.

For more information, visit www.principalcharityclassic.com.

2017 Principal Charity Classic Final Field

Michael Allen
Stephen Ames
Billy Andrade
Tommy Armour III
Woody Austin
Jay Don Blake +
Michael Bradley
Paul Broadhurst
Mark Brooks
Olin Browne
Bart Bryant
Tom Byrum
Mark Calcavecchia
Jim Carter
Russ Cochran
Marco Dawson
Glen Day
Scott Dunlap
Joe Durant
Steve Flesch
Dan Forsman
Carlos Franco
David Frost
Fred Funk
Bobby Gage
Doug Garwood
Bob Gilder
Bill Glasson
Mike Goodes
Paul Goydos
Damon Green +
Jay Haas
Gary Hallberg +
Todd Hamilton
Brian Henninger +
John Huston
Peter Jacobsen
Lee Janzen
Brandt Jobe
Jerry Kelly
Skip Kendall
Bernhard Langer
Tom Lehman
Steve Lowery
Billy Mayfair
Blaine McCallister
Scott McCarron *
Larry Mize
Lonnie Nielsen +
Scott Parel
Jesper Parnevik
Craig Parry
Steve Pate
Tom Pernice Jr.
Tim Petrovic
Phillip Price
Tom Purtzer
Fran Quinn
Loren Roberts
Gene Sauers
Wes Short, Jr.
Joey Sindelar
Jeff Sluman
Jerry Smith
Rod Spittle
Kevin Sutherland
Esteban Toledo
David Toms
Kirk Triplett
Bob Tway
Scott Verplank
Duffy Waldorf
Willie Wood
Fuzzy Zoeller

Field notes

Final field will include 78 players; 4 event qualifiers currently TBD.

* denotes defending champion

+ denotes players receiving 2017 sponsor exemptions


Principal Charity Classic Advance Notes from PGA TOUR Champions

Click here to view Principal Charity Classic Advance Notes from PGA TOUR Champions


Fred Couples Commits To Field For 2017 Principal Charity Classic

The Principal Charity Classic®, presented by Wells Fargo, the annual PGA TOUR Champions event in Des Moines, is pleased to announce legendary golfer Fred Couples has committed to play in the 2017 Principal Charity Classic. The tournament will take place June 6-11 at historic Wakonda Club.

Couples, who joins fellow World Golf Hall of Fame member Bernhard Langer in the tournament field, has won more than 60 professional golf events – including the 1992 Masters Tournament and the 1984 and 1996 PLAYERS Championships. In addition to his Masters win, Couples has recorded top-three finishes in the PGA TOUR’s three additional majors: the U.S. Open (T3, 1991), The Open Championship (T3, 1991 and ’05) and the PGA Championship (2nd, 1990).

Nicknamed “Boom Boom” because of his tremendous power off the tee, Couples is a five-time member of the United States Ryder Cup team. He has also served as captain of three victorious U.S. Presidents Cup squads (2009, ’11, ’13).

“We are thrilled to welcome Fred Couples back to Des Moines and the Principal Charity Classic,” said Greg Conrad, Principal Charity Classic Tournament Director. “Fred is one of golf’s true legends. Many of us grew up watching and cheering for him, and in awe of his effortless swing – which has allowed him to remain very competitive on the PGA TOUR, as well as the PGA TOUR Champions. Most importantly, we are excited for Des Moines, which continues to draw golf’s very best because of the community’s outstanding support.”

Since winning PGA TOUR Champions “Rookie of the Year” honors in 2010, Couples has notched 13 victories, including the 2011 Constellation SENIOR PLAYERS Championship and the 2012 Senior Open Championship.

Couples, 57, made his first and only previous appearance at the Principal Charity Classic in 2010, when he finished T11 with rounds of 70-70-66 at Glen Oaks Country Club in West Des Moines. The 2017 Principal Charity Classic will mark his first time competing at Wakonda Club.

 In addition to Couples, current player commitments for the 2017 Principal Charity Classic include 2016 tournament champion Scott McCarron and 2016 PGA TOUR Champions Player of the Year Bernhard Langer, as well as John Daly, Jesper Parnevik, Billy Andrade, Mark Calcavecchia, Fred Funk, Jay Haas, Tom Lehman, Rocco Mediate, Tom Pernice, Jr., David Toms and Fuzzy Zoeller, among other fan favorites.

The Principal Charity Classic was named the PGA TOUR Champions Tournament of the Year in 2016 and has raised nearly $10 million to benefit Iowa children’s charities in the past decade.

Get a ‘Couples’ of tickets for the price of one

To celebrate Fred Couples’ return to the Principal Charity Classic, the tournament is offering a special ticket discount for fans. To get a 2-for-1 price on Good-Any-One-Day tickets to the Principal Charity Classic, simply enter promo code COUPLES when purchasing tickets online at principalcharityclassic.com now through tournament week.

As a reminder, kids 15 and under may attend the Principal Charity Classic for free if accompanied by a ticketed adult. Complimentary admission is also provided for all active duty, retired and reserve military along with their dependents.

For more information about the Principal Charity Classic, including volunteer and sponsorship opportunities, visit principalcharityclassic.com.


Volunteer Profile: Meet Maggie Hatcher.

You may not know Maggie Hatcher, but she’s a very important person.

She is one of the approximately 1,200 volunteers who make the Principal Charity Classic run like clockwork. Or in Maggie’s case, a most experienced volunteer. She’s worked the tournament every year since it arrived in Greater Des Moines in 2001.

That covers 16 tournaments, three host golf courses, two title sponsors and one terrific volunteer.

“It’s a labor of love,” said Hatcher, who is from Harlan. “I’m going to be 79 in August. If the health holds, I’ll keep doing it.”

Principal Charity Classic volunteer Maggie Hatcher of Harlan.

Maggie has held three different jobs at the golf course in her volunteer career.

“I kind of go wherever,” she said. “And they take good care of me.”

Hatcher started as a walking scorer, then worked in radio control. Now Maggie serves as a marshal on Wakonda’s 14th tee.

Not bad for someone who got shut out the first time she tried to volunteer, at the 1999 U.S. Senior Open at the Des Moines Golf and Country Club. She applied, but all the spots had already been spoken for.

That U.S. Senior Open smashed records, and caught the attention of the PGA TOUR.

“All of a sudden, the PGA TOUR realized there’s a market out here,” Hatcher said. “I was so happy when I heard one was coming here. And we are so lucky. I have friends in Omaha, and they have a Web.com TOUR event there. They would give anything to have a PGA TOUR Champions event over there.”

It was the first week of December, 2000, when the PGA TOUR announced that a senior event scheduled for 2001 in Indianapolis, Ind., wouldn’t take place because Comfort Inns had dropped title sponsorship. Des Moines officials, expecting an event starting in 2002, suddenly had 10 months to make the Allianz Championship at Glen Oaks Country Club in West Des Moines a reality.

Maggie still has the golf shirt and pullover that volunteers were given that first year. She keeps it because one of her favorite players, Fred Couples, owned the company that made the shirt.

Maggie Hatcher, 78, displays her volunteer uniform from the 2001 Allianz Championship in Des Moines.

She used to keep a lot of things, like the golf balls the players signed and gave to her after each round, the pairings, the golf shirt she received every year and other momentos. She’s given most of that stuff away, or thrown it out.

“As you get older, you get rid of a lot of stuff,” Hatcher said.

But she has kept her tournament badges, the one keepsake from her annual trek to Des Moines. It’s the friends she’s made, the golfers she’s met and plenty of memories that mean more to her than material goods.

“I always had good people to walk with,” Maggie said. “I don’t care whether it was a name player or just some guy who was working every day who just loved the game of golf. I always liked to score the pro-ams, because you kind of get to know the player better, and you see the communication they have with the other four (amateur) players. They have to have the patience of God.”

Golf found its way into Hatcher’s life long before the PGA TOUR Champions made its way to Des Moines. She used to volunteer at an LPGA event in Springfield, Ill., and even served as tournament chairman one year.

“That’s something that stayed with me,” she said. “I’ve always been a big sports nut.”

Later on, she worked for Executive Sports in Delray Beach, Fla., which managed golf tournaments, including some on the PGA TOUR. Two years later she returned home to Harlan.

And when she heard that Greater Des Moines was getting a senior event, she jumped at the opportunity to volunteer.

When she started as a walking scorer in 2001, hole-by-hole scores were kept on paper and radioed into scoring central. In 2012, her last year in that job, she carried a hand-held device that automatically registered the score.

Hatcher learned one valuable lesson: when in doubt, the caddie is your best friend.

“Most of the guys are very easy to work for,” Maggie said. “But if I didn’t pick up a score or something, I just asked the caddie. I didn’t bother the player.”

Principal Charity Classic Senior Reporter Rick Brown and Maggie Hatcher at Wakonda Club.

Maggie wasn’t able to continue as a walking scorer in 2013 because of heart issues. So radio control became her home. But she felt like she was missing the action.

“I said, ‘You know, I want to get back out on the course,’ ” she said.

So in 2015, she joined up with some volunteer friends who used to work the 13th hole at Glen Oaks. They now keep things in order on Wakonda’s 14th tee. And that’s where she’ll be for her 17th tournament.

“We’re blessed with a tremendous volunteer tent, thanks to Bob Clark and his crew,” Maggie said.

Whether it’s a good meal or a thank you, Hatcher feels appreciated for the work she does.

“It’s fun,” she said. “And to me it’s the camaraderie, and coming back and seeing the people.”

By Rick Brown, Principal Charity Classic Senior Reporter

 


10 Questions with Scott McCarron

2016 Principal Charity Classic Champion Scott McCarron (left) and Principal Charity Classic Senior Reporter Rick Brown.

By Rick Brown, Principal Charity Classic Senior Reporter

RB: Hale Irwin won 45 PGA TOUR Champions titles. You had dinner with him at last year’s Regions Tradition tournament (two weeks before the 2016 Principal Charity Classic) to pick his brain about why he was successful. You’ve won three times since. What advice did he give you?

SM: The main thing I took out of it was this: Find out what type of player you are and be that player. I was always trying to be the heroic guy, hit the heroic shot, go for broke. When I got in the hunt, if I was one up, I wanted to be seven up. I was always trying to do too much. I realized I’ve got to be more patient out there, kind of let the tournaments come to me, and see where I’m at the last couple of holes. Just be patient.

RB: Patience is a big reason why you won last year at Wakonda, right?

SM: I was very patient. I didn’t make a lot of birdies the last day, just kind of hanging in there. And then, lo and behold, I birdie 16, 17 and 18 to win. That showed me I’ve got to be a lot more patient because I was trying to force things a little too much. Especially just coming out to the PGA TOUR Champions. You want to win, you want to play well, you think you’ve got this five-year window and you want to get it done. If I stay in shape, I can have a 10-12-year window. No reason to rush it, let’s just be patient and hit the shots you know you can hit.

RB: You talk about not going for the heroic shot, but you win here by closing with three straight birdies, you win the 2016 Dominion Charity Classic in a playoff and you win the 2017 Allianz Championship with an eagle on the final hole.

SM: True, but I got in all those positions because I was patient. And then I was able to pull off a shot when I needed it. But even at the Dominion, I had about the same length putt I had here to win (10-footer on No. 18) and missed it. But I didn’t let it bother me. I lost in a playoff to Colin Montgomerie in Canada (Pacific Links Bear Mountain Championship). You’re not going to win them all.

RB: You won three times on the PGA TOUR, and you were one of the first to use a long putter. Would you say that putting kept you from winning even more?

SM: Putting did not hold me back one bit. I was an excellent putter. But I putted with a long putter. Nothing held me back on the regular tour, except it’s hard. I won three times, lost a couple of playoffs, had some Top 10s in majors. I had a nice career. But not like a guy who won 10 or 12 times. I really feel like I should have won five or six, seven events on the PGA TOUR. Which would have been a really good career for me.  Unfortunately I only won three. But I still won.

RB: You hadn’t won a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event in 16 years (287 events since the 2001 BellSouth Classic) prior to last year’s Principal Charity Classic. Did that even enter your mind when you came down the stretch on Sunday at the Principal?

SM: Zero. I hadn’t won since 2001, but the feeling you have trying to win a golf tournament doesn’t go away.  It doesn’t matter if you’re on the PGA TOUR Champions, the PGA TOUR or your club championship. We still have the same feelings anybody has going to win a tournament. It’s calming yourself, clearing your mind and hitting the shots you need to have.

RB: You played your final 47 holes without a bogey at Wakonda last year. That’s remarkable.

SM: I remember the only bogey I made was on No. 7 (in the first round). I ran a 35-footer about 5 feet by. And as I was putting some car went down the road and honked right in my backswing. I’m like, “Really?” That was the only bogey I made all week. The guy got me. A White Cutlass Supreme. I wish I would have gotten the license number.

RB: You won three times in a 17-month stretch, shortly after getting married in April of 2016. What role has your wife Jenny played in your success?

SM: She’s been amazing. We’ve been together for about 5 years now. She has been so supportive. Because there was a time, when we started dating, where I was injured. I had to have thumb surgery  to have a bone spur removed. I wasn’t playing that well. I had a couple years to get ready for the PGA TOUR Champions, which I was really looking forward to. We were going out and playing the Web.com Tour, and she was caddying for me at some events. Staying in podunk hotels, trying to save some money.  It was tough. And she was so supportive. And then I got the job with Fox to do announcing. And there was a little bit of me that said, “I don’t know if I’m going to be good enough on the PGA TOUR Champions to keep doing it.” And she kept pushing me. She said, “You know what? You are. This is what you love to do.” Her being a fitness instructor and triathlete, I was training a lot with her, getting in shape. And she was a huge motivational factor for me to practice and prepare for the PGA TOUR Champions.

RB: You’ve got some interesting hobbies, like flying, mountain biking, fly fishing and guitar. Do they help you get away from golf?

SM: Absolutely. We love to fly fish. I got my pilot’s license back in college, so I was flying and doing quite a bit of that. I’m not flying now.  I’m a member of a race track. We go out there and race cars a little bit.

RB: It sounds like you enjoy living on the edge a bit.

SM: I like doing something that occupies my mind so that I’m not thinking about golf because golf can be very consuming. You’ve got to get away. And when I’m fly-fishing, it’s that next cast. I’m not thinking about anything in golf.

RB: When you come back to a place where you’ve won, is it a nice feeling?

SM: Just driving in the parking lot here (at Wakonda Club), I got a “whoa” feeling. Those emotions come flooding back. Because this was a very exciting time, to win your first event. I love this golf course. I love how well this event is supported by the city, the fans, the sponsors, the volunteers – everyone. The Principal Charity Classic is one of the best-run tournaments we play on the PGA TOUR Champions. It feels like a major. Having that many people come out and watch us play really is a thrill.


Bernhard Langer Joins 2017 Principal Charity Classic Field.

The Principal Charity Classic®, presented by Wells Fargo, the annual PGA TOUR Champions event in Des Moines, is pleased to announce 2016 PGA TOUR Champions Player of the Year and defending Charles Schwab Cup champion Bernhard Langer has committed to play in the 2017 Principal Charity Classic. The tournament will take place June 6-11 at historic Wakonda Club.

The Principal Charity Classic was named the PGA TOUR Champions Tournament of the Year in 2016 and has raised nearly $10 million to benefit Iowa children’s charities in the past decade.

“We are tremendously excited to welcome Bernhard Langer back to Des Moines for the 2017 Principal Charity Classic,” said Greg Conrad, Principal Charity Classic Tournament Director. “His performance on the PGA TOUR Champions has been nothing short of spectacular, and he continues to raise his level of play every year. It’s incredible and inspiring to watch him.”

Langer, 59, recorded four victories last year – including two major championships – en route to claiming his record fourth Charles Schwab Cup title. The two-time Masters champion and World Golf Hall of Fame member was also named the PGA TOUR Champions Player of the Year for the sixth time in his decorated career.

Langer has 30 career PGA TOUR Champions wins, the second-highest total in TOUR history (Hale Irwin leads with 45). He previously played in the Principal Charity Classic in 2010, ’12, ’13 and ’15, with a best finish of T10 in 2012.

Strong early field for 2017

In addition to Langer, early player commitments for the 2017 Principal Charity Classic include 2016 tournament champion Scott McCarron and fan favorite John Daly, as well as Jesper Parnevik, Billy Andrade, Mark Calcavecchia, Fred Funk, Jay Haas, Tom Lehman, Rocco Mediate, Tom Pernice, Jr., David Toms and Fuzzy Zoeller, among others.

“The strength of early player commitments for our 2017 tournament reflects the quality of the Principal Charity Classic and its status as a premier event among PGA TOUR Champions competitors,” Conrad said. “Great players want to play in great events, and the fantastic support of the Des Moines community – from spectators and volunteers to sponsors and local media – does not go unnoticed by the players.”

Save with code ‘Langer’

In recognition of Bernhard Langer’s return to the Principal Charity in 2017, fans can save 17% on all available ticket options – including VIP Champions Club tickets – now through April 10 by using promo code LANGER when purchasing tickets online at www.principalcharityclassic.com.

As a reminder, kids 15 and under may attend the Principal Charity Classic for free if accompanied by a ticketed adult. Complimentary admission is also provided for all active duty, retired and reserve military along with their dependents.

For more information about the Principal Charity Classic, including volunteer and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.principalcharityclassic.com.


Volunteer at the 2017 Principal Charity Classic.

Volunteer registration for the 2017 Principal Charity Classic, the annual PGA TOUR Champions event in Des Moines, is open. This year’s tournament will take place June 6-11 at historic Wakonda Club.

The Principal Charity Classic was recently named the PGA TOUR Champions 2016 Tournament of the Year and has raised nearly $10 million to benefit Iowa children’s charities since 2007. The tournament is sponsored by Principal and presented by Wells Fargo.

“Approximately 1,200 volunteers help bring the Principal Charity Classic to life each year, and we couldn’t do it without their loyal and energetic support,” said Loralyn Werkmeister, Volunteer Coordinator for the Principal Charity Classic. “Our volunteers truly believe in the tournament and its charitable mission.

“In 2016, we had volunteers join us from 14 different states and Canada, ranging in age from 13 to 90. We’re looking forward to welcoming many of them back – as well as some new faces – for a great experience at our 2017 tournament.”

Becoming a volunteer

Both returning and new volunteers are required complete the online registration form at www.principalcharityclassic.com. Volunteers are asked to work a minimum of two (2) shifts during the championship, which range from 4-6 hours each, and to make a donation in support of Iowa children’s charities when registering.

Volunteer committee assignments ranging from on-course marshals, standard bearers and TV spotters to merchandise volunteers, shuttle drivers, Pro-Am operations and more. A full list of volunteer committee opportunities can be viewed at www.principalcharityclassic.com and are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. Individual assignments will be announced beginning in early April.

All 2017 volunteers will receive the following in exchange for their generous donation to support the tournament’s charitable mission:

  • Free admission for tournament week
  • Five (5) Good-Any-One-Day tournament tickets to share with family, friends, etc.
  • Meals on days of service
  • An invitation to the Volunteer Appreciation Party on June 5
  • The official volunteer uniform (one golf polo, one rain-resistant golf jacket and a hat or visor)
  • A one-time 25% off merchandise discount
  • A preferred parking pass

There are also a limited number of junior volunteer opportunities available for individuals age 13-18 during tournament week. The junior package includes a volunteer polo and hat or visor, free admission for the week, meals on days of service and five (5) Good-Any-One-Day tickets to share with family and friends. Juniors interested in volunteering should use the registration code junior.

Volunteer incentives

The Principal Charity Classic also offers a variety of unique incentives to reward volunteers:

  • Win free golf at members-only Wakonda Club. For each new volunteer that a returning volunteer recruits in 2017, they will earn one entry into a drawing for a twosome of golf at Wakonda Club. To participate, returning volunteers should simply ask their recruits to list their name in the “referred by” box when completing the online volunteer registration.
  • Register before March 6 to be entered to win an Honorary Observer experience. The winner will receive the opportunity to walk with PGA TOUR Champions players during tournament play. The winner’s name will be announced to the gallery as they are photographed with their PGA TOUR Champions threesome on the first tee. Players will then autograph the photo at the conclusion of the round as a special keepsake.
  • Register before April 3 to be entered to win an invitation to the 2017 Pairings Party. Volunteers who register by this date will be entered to win an invitation for themselves and a guest to attend the invitation-only Pairings Party celebration, which kicks off tournament week. Guests will enjoy complimentary food and beverage with tournament sponsors, Pro-Am participants, PGA TOUR Champions players, key Des Moines executives and other special guests.
  • Register by May 1 to be entered to win a set of Champions Club tickets for the 2017 tournament. The Champions Club provides two premier locations to watch the tournament action. Two outdoor locations on the 16th and 17th greens provide covered seating with a luncheon buffet – beer, wine and soda included.

For complete incentive details and more information, visit www.principalcharityclassic.com/volunteer.


Principal Charity Classic Named PGA TOUR Champions Tournament of the Year.

The PGA TOUR Champions has named the Principal Charity Classic as 2016 Tournament of the Year, presenting the annual Des Moines event with its coveted “President’s Award.” The PGA TOUR bestowed the honor Wednesday, December 7, during its annual meetings in Las Vegas.  Principal is the title sponsor of the Principal Charity Classic.

“We thank the PGA TOUR not only for this award, but for the opportunity over the last 10 years to sponsor an event that gives so much back to our community— especially our children,” said Beth Brady, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Principal®. “And, it’s very meaningful to receive this honor during global volunteer week, a time when many of our 15,000 employees around the world are themselves giving back in their communities.”

The President’s Award is the highest tournament honor awarded by the PGA TOUR Champions annually and recognizes overall excellence, as well as the intangibles that make a tournament stand out among many successful events. This year marks the first time the Principal Charity Classic has been chosen to receive the President’s Award.

“The Principal Charity Classic has left a significant charitable footprint as well as an estimated $23 million annual economic impact on the greater Des Moines region,” said Iowa Governor Terry Branstad. “That matters to this state. It’s companies like Principal, as well as the volunteers, spectators and local businesses that step up every year, that make this tournament possible and keep our state moving forward.”

Principal celebrated the 10th Anniversary of its title sponsorship in 2016, which marked the tournament’s most successful year to date.

The 2016 Principal Charity Classic:

  • Attracted a record 83,389 spectators to Wakonda Club during 2016 tournament week.
  • Donated a record $2,053,725 to Iowa children’s charities, including six regional Tournament Charity Partners and more than 100 statewide charity organizations through the tournament’s Birdies For Charity program.
  • Inspired increased engagement, with the tournament’s record 2016 donation representing a 46% increase over the previous year; the Principal Charity Classic’s all-time charitable giving total now stands at nearly $10 million in 10 years.
  • Introduced the MidAmerican Energy “Green Canyon” on holes 16 and 17 at Wakonda Club as a fan enhancement, designed to provide continuous content via LED ribbon boards and ease of access to food, drink and merchandise.
  • And also finished as one of the top nominees for the PGA TOUR Champions 2016 “Players Award” as voted on by the Player Advisory Council.

Scott McCarron claimed his first career PGA TOUR Champions victory at the 2016 Principal Charity Classic with a one-shot victory over Miguel Ángel Jiménez and Billy Andrade. McCarron would go on to win the Dominion Charity Classic in November and add two runner-up finishes during the year to wind up at No. 4 in the final Charles Schwab Cup standings.

The 2017 Principal Charity Classic will be played June 6-11 at Wakonda Club in Des Moines. To purchase your tickets, click here.


Iowa Children’s Charities Get Record Donation from Principal Charity Classic

Great golf. Check. Beautiful weather. Check. Record attendance. Check. Record amount given to charity. Check (literally).

The Principal Charity Classic presented by Wells Fargo has announced its 2016 tournament raised $2,053,725 for Iowa children’s charities. That’s the biggest annual donation in Principal Charity Classic history. It brings the tournament’s charitable giving total to nearly $10 million in 10 years.

“This community decided a decade ago to put kids first and created a golf tournament to do just that,” said Dan Houston, chairman, president and CEO of Principal®. “Year after year it kept growing. And here we are today giving Iowa children’s charities a record amount of money to help their organizations serve kids. That’s powerful.”

This year’s tournament, held May 31-June 5, attracted a record 83,389 spectators to the Wakonda Club. Principal is celebrating its 10th Anniversary as title sponsor of the Principal Charity Classic in 2016. Wells Fargo also marks a decade as presenting sponsor.

The Principal Charity Classic annually draws some of the biggest names in golf to Des Moines, including this year’s champion, Scott McCarron. Legendary golfer John Daly was also part of the 2016 field in his first year of PGA TOUR Champions eligibility, along with fan favorites Miguel Ángel Jiménez, Jesper Parnevik, Jay Haas, Fred Funk, Kenny Perry, Fuzzy Zoeller, Rocco Mediate and 2015 Principal Charity Classic champion Mark Calcavecchia.

“The Principal Charity Classic features great golf and some of the game’s best players, but what truly makes this tournament special is our community,” said Greg Conrad, Tournament Director of the Principal Charity Classic. “Every volunteer, sponsor and charity partner actively participates in the tournament’s mission of supporting Iowa kids. And that does not go unnoticed by PGA TOUR Champions players, who continually tell us they are inspired to keep coming back – and giving back – to our community, too.”

Funds raised through the tournament support six Tournament Charity Partners in the Des Moines area, as well as more than 100 Iowa children’s charities in the region and across the entire state participating through the Birdies for Charity program. The six Tournament Charity Partners are Blank Children’s Hospital, Bravo Greater Des Moines, Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines, Mercy Medical Center, the United Way of Central Iowa and Variety – the Children’s Charity of Iowa.

The 2017 Principal Charity Classic will take place June 6-11, 2017, at Wakonda Club, and Good-Any-One-Day tickets are available for purchase now by clicking here.


Good Luck, RAGBRAI Riders!

RAGBRAI, The Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, is a yearly seven-day bicycle ride across the state, and 8,500 riders will be making their way along its route July 24-30!

Variety – the Children’s Charity of Iowa, one of the Principal Charity Classic’s six Tournament Charity Partners, will be awarding 175 Variety bikes to underprivileged and at-risk children during RAGBRAI 2016, with presentations in each of the ride’s five overnight towns: Shenandoah, Creston, Centerville, Ottumwa and Washington.

In the past decade, Variety has also presented more than 160 specialized bikes to children with special needs, and 50 of those bikes donated in conjunction with funds raised by the Principal Charity Classic.

Specialized bikes help children with special needs gain mobility, confidence, freedom, independence and the chance to join in the life of their community by providing funding for specialized bicycles to children. Specialized bikes are customized for each child and range in price from $2,000 to $6,000. However, they are rarely covered by insurance, making Variety’s work that much more important.

“There is absolutely nothing like seeing a child’s face light up – and the faces of their family members – when they receive their very own specialized bike,” said Greg Conrad, Principal Charity Classic Tournament Director. “It’s very real and impactful for everyone involved, and those moments are what the Principal Charity Classic is all about.

To learn more about the Principal Charity Classic’s support of Variety, CLICK HERE.

To make a donation in support of Variety Bikes, CLICK HERE.