RBC and RCGA name Mike Weir Foundation as national charity partner for RBC Canadian Open



    
    Mike Weir Charity Classic to be held Monday of RBC Canadian Open
    tournament week;

    RBC expands relationship with Canadian golf icon;

    PGA TOUR stars confirm their intent to compete for Canada's national
    Open championship
    

    TORONTO, ON (RCGA), March 9 /CNW/ - RBC and the Royal Canadian Golf
Association (RCGA) today announced the Mike Weir Foundation as a national
charity partner for the RBC Canadian Open, welcoming the inaugural Mike Weir
Charity Classic to the lineup of tournament week activities for the RBC
Canadian Open, July 20-26 at Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville, Ont.
    The Mike Weir Charity Classic will take place on Monday, July 20 at Glen
Abbey Golf Club. The high-profile charity fundraiser will feature marquee
celebrities from the music, sports and entertainment industries including
two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash as well as several notable players on the PGA
TOUR. This star-studded event will be a true highlight of event week.
    "A critical component of our being title sponsor of the RBC Canadian Open
is to ensure we are generating charitable legacies in our communities," said
Gordon M. Nixon, RBC president and CEO. "Creating the Mike Weir Charity
Classic during tournament week is an important step towards this objective and
will help improve children's wellness across Canada."
    The Mike Weir Foundation supports numerous worthwhile causes in support
of the physical, emotional and educational welfare of children. All net
proceeds from the Mike Weir Charity Classic will benefit children's charities
through the Foundation.
    "Supporting children's wellness is the main goal of the Mike Weir
Foundation and I am pleased to have RBC and the RCGA as partners in realizing
this vision," said Mike Weir. "I'm looking forward to the RBC Canadian Open
and hosting the Charity Classic. It's for a great cause and part of the RBC
Canadian Open's commitment to the community. It'll be a lot of fun."
    The opportunity to add a philanthropic component to the RBC Canadian Open
aligns with the RCGA's and RBC's long term strategic plan for the event.
    "We are extremely proud to partner with the Mike Weir Foundation and
welcome the Mike Weir Charity Classic to tournament week of the RBC Canadian
Open," said Scott Simmons, RCGA Executive Director and CEO. "Adding a
significant charitable element to Canada's national Open championship is a
major focus of our strategic vision for the event and together with RBC, we
feel that aligning our philanthropic efforts with the Mike Weir Foundation is
an ideal fit and to be in a position to announce the type of talent we have
secured is very fulfilling for everyone involved."
    As part of today's announcement, RBC also announced it is expanding its
marketing relationship with Mike Weir to include all of its financial service
categories. Last week, RBC announced it had established a relationship with
Stephen Ames and his foundation's work with youth in Canada and Trinidad and
Tobago.
    "Building partnerships with some of the most recognizable players on the
PGA TOUR helps us enhance the RBC Canadian Open and drives our business
objectives," said Jim Little, RBC Chief Brand and Communications Officer. "We
want to leverage our deepening role in golf to build brand experiences for our
clients and golf fans in Canada as well as enhance brand awareness for RBC in
the U.S. and internationally. In partnership with the RCGA, the PGA TOUR and
other sponsors, we are revitalizing the RBC Canadian Open and restoring it to
its rightful place as one of the premier stops on the PGA TOUR."
    Following the conclusion of the 2008 RBC Canadian Open, officials from
RBC and the RCGA sat down as part of its ongoing dialogue with Team Weir to
discuss the concept of adding a new event that would address two key
objectives. Beyond simply raising charity dollars, the intent was to formalize
the role Weir could play in helping to engage fellow PGA TOUR players to
support the philanthropic mission of The Mike Weir Foundation, while helping
to enhance the Field of the RBC Canadian Open.
    Led in part by Weir's input, rapport and dialogue with his peers, the RBC
Canadian Open is thrilled to announce that marquee names have already
committed to play in the Mike Weir Charity Classic and challenge for the 100th
playing of Canada's national Open championship, July 20-26 at Glen Abbey Golf
Club. The following collection of emerging PGA TOUR superstars, world-class
international players and proven veterans will be in attendance:

    
    Anthony Kim
      -  Two-time PGA TOUR winner
      -  2008 Ryder Cup hero

    Trevor Immelman
      -  2008 Masters champion
      -  Two-time PGA TOUR winner

    Camilo Villegas
      -  2008 TOUR Championship winner
      -  Two-time PGA TOUR winner

    Luke Donald
      -  Two-time PGA TOUR winner
      -  Two-time Ryder Cup team member

    Fred Couples
      -  15-time PGA TOUR winner, 5-time Ryder Cup team member
      -  4-time President's Cup team member, 2009 President's Cup Captain

    Mark Calcavecchia
      -  13-time PGA TOUR winner
      -  2005 RBC Canadian Open champion
      -  4-time Ryder Cup team member

    Stephen Ames
      -  Three-time PGA TOUR winner
      -  2006 The PLAYERS Championship winner

    Chez Reavie
      -  2008 RBC Canadian Open champion

    Mike Weir
      -  Eight-time PGA TOUR winner
      -  2003 Masters champion
      -  4-time President's Cup team member
      -  2009 inductee into the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame
    

    Additional PGA TOUR players and notable celebrities taking part in the
Mike Weir Charity Classic will be announced in coming months as the 2009 RBC
Canadian Open shapes up to be one of the highest profile events in recent
history.

    ABOUT THE 2009 RBC CANADIAN OPEN

    An exciting new era has arrived for Canada's national championship. Part
of the FedEx Cup, stars of the PGA TOUR will compete for $5.1 million (US) at
the RBC Canadian Open, July 20-26 at Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville,
Ontario. Established in 1904, the tournament is the third-oldest national open
golf championship worldwide next to the British Open and the U.S. Open. The
RBC Canadian Open is proudly sponsored by RBC, Bell, Pengrowth and BMW Group
Canada. For updated corporate hospitality, tickets, volunteer and sponsorship
information please visit www.rbccanadianopen.ca or call 1-800-571-OPEN.

    RBC AND THE RBC CANADIAN OPEN

    In partnership with the Royal Canadian Golf Association (RCGA), RBC is
the title sponsor of the RBC Canadian Open, the third oldest national golf
championship worldwide, next only to the British Open and the U.S. Open. With
a history of great players and premier fields, the RBC Canadian Open provides
golf fans with the opportunity to experience the excitement of a world class
event on Canadian soil. RBC also sponsors all levels of amateur sport, from
grassroots programs in local communities to national sport organizations and
elite-level athletes.

    ABOUT THE ROYAL CANADIAN GOLF ASSOCIATION

    The Royal Canadian Golf Association (RCGA) is the governing body of golf
in Canada, representing 377,000 members at 1,600 clubs across the country.
Recognized by Sport Canada as the National Sports Organization (NSO) for golf
in this country, the RCGA's mission is to grow participation in and passion
for the sport while upholding the integrity and traditions of the game. The
RCGA conducts programs and services to help shape the future of golf in
Canada. High performance athlete development, CN Future Links, Canada's
national junior golf program, turfgrass and environmental research, the
Canadian Golf Hall of Fame and Museum, Rules of Golf and amateur status,
handicapping and course rating are only some of the initiatives the
association leads for golf in Canada. In addition, the RCGA conducts Canada's
most prestigious golf championships. The RBC Canadian Open and CN Canadian
Women's Open attract the best professional golfers in the world, while
regional junior and national amateur championships showcase the best in
Canadian golf.

    For further information on what the RCGA is doing to support golf in your
community please visit www.rcga.org.





For further information:

For further information: MEDIA CONTACTS: Dan Pino, Director, Media and
Public Relations, Royal Canadian Golf Association, t: (905) 849-9700 ext. 406,
c: (416) 434-5525 (cell), e: dpino@rcga.org; Jackie Braden, Manager, Media
Relations, RBC, t: (416) 974-2124, c: (416) 318-7950 (cell), e:
Jackie.braden@rbc.com


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