How one club is seeking to give back while hosting the U.S. Amateur
By Jon Rizzi
Between its spectacularly expanded clubhouse, its back nine “creek restoration” of the William Flynn layout and its choice of member Peyton Manning to chair this September’s U.S. Amateur, Cherry Hills Country Club is starting its second century of existence with a flourish.
Worthy of equal fanfare is the club’s desire to create opportunities for Colorado youth through donations to local charitable organizations: Palmer Scholarship Foundation, Evans Scholars Foundation, and First Tee Colorado chapters.
“We’re obviously proud to present unparalleled championship golf to the world-class participants and the spectators of the U.S. Amateur at Cherry Hills, but the charitable impact in the community made possible through this championship is a legacy that means everything to the club,” says Cherry Hills President Kim Koehn. “To be able to see what our Palmer and Evans Scholars accomplish nationwide keeps us motivated to do even more to support young people across Colorado.”
1954 U.S. Amateur winner Arnold Palmer’s iconic victory in the 1960 U.S. Open at Cherry Hills inspired the creation of the Palmer Scholarship in 2001 to award assistance to deserving coworkers and golf caddies of Cherry Hills. Since its inception, the Palmer Scholarship Foundation has served as a turning point for thousands of students who were awarded scholarships valued at more than $2 million.
Cherry Hills has long supported the Evans Scholars Foundation, a nonprofit organization providing for which the club is also one of the two top fundraising clubs nationwide. Operated by the Western Golf Association, the foundation provides Evans Scholarships—full tuition and housing college scholarships to caddies. Since 1930, more than 11,550 Evans Scholars have graduated from college, and since 1967, 53 Cherry Hills caddies have graduated as Evans Scholars from the University of Colorado chapter.
At this year’s U.S. Amateur, the Junior Golf Pavilion will be the place for attendees and youth to learn about golf, life lessons, and sustainability in the game. Kids of all ages will learn about the scholarship opportunities through the Palmer Foundation and Evans Scholarship program. In addition, youth from First Tee Colorado chapters will also benefit and be impacted by this great championship.
“We believe that golf can provide a critical turning point and a pathway for the future of our youth, and for us to have this opportunity to pay it forward is extremely gratifying for Cherry Hills,” Koehn said.
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