Golf with a heart

LPGA tournament brings philanthropy with it

Veronica Naas

Grey Silo golf course will open its gates from July 10 to 14 for the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic, bringing an anticipated 66,000 fans and 144 golfers to the annual event.

Women’s golf greats like Brittany Lang, Paula Creamer and Stacy Lewis are among many pros who will draw crowds at this prestigious event. This year, the extent of community engagement is demonstrated by partnerships with leading local employers like Manulife Financial, BlackBerry and St. Mary’s Hospital.

“Manulife is committed to engaging and supporting the local communities in which we have a corporate presence, like Waterloo where nearly 4,000 of our employees reside,” said Marianne Harrison, president and CEO of Manulife Canada. “We believe our active involvement in the community brings a variety of economic, social and charitable benefits to Waterloo Region.”

Richard Kuypers, tournament director, echoed that sentiment. “There are many stakeholders that come together to offer a world-class event such as an LPGA event,” he said. “With so many moving parts it is a real accomplishment at the end of the day and a genuine privilege to work so closely and in such unison with each stakeholder.” He values the opportunity to give back to the local community by showcasing all that the Waterloo Region has to offer while such a high-profile event is in town.

“Our sponsorship of the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic allows us to give back to the community where our Canadian head office is located in a number of ways,” said Harrison. “An excellent example is the tournament’s charitable partner St. Mary’s General Hospital, which is home to a world-class cardiac care centre.” A portion of the proceeds from the tournament will help establish a new arrhythmia program for heart health at St. Mary’s.

“The community has been great to us”, said Kuypers. “We truly believe that the community sees this event as one that puts the region in the global spotlight. Aside from the world-class golf, the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic boasts a family-friendly environment where there is something for every age and any interest level.”

BlackBerry’s Community Program has arranged for a number of engagement opportunities for attendees throughout the week of the tournament with a special invitational junior golf clinic, a welcome area and family fun zone. The public is invited to participate in the revelry, too. BlackBerry will host a family-friendly event on Sunday, July 7 in the Waterloo Town Square.

Approximately 1,400 volunteers will ensure a smooth, day-to-day execution of the tournament by assisting with shuttle services, marshalling, scoring, hospitality and much more.

Want to be on the green and part of the excitement? Visit for further event details and ticket information.