Johnson's Classic draws PGA to CR

BY DI STAFF | JULY 07, 2014 5:00 AM

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The Zach Johnson Foundation Classic set to take place today.

Cedar Rapids is getting its yearly dose of PGA Tour players today in the form of the fourth-annual Zach Johnson Foundation Classic, scheduled to take place at Elmcrest Country Club in Cedar Rapids. Accomplished PGA Tour player and Cedar Rapids native Zach Johnson will host a fundraiser gala and Pro-Am golf tournament to raise money for his local charities.  

Johnson was able to recruit an impressive lineup of fellow PGA Tour players to participate in his charity’s tournament. This week’s PGA Tour tournament — which will begin Thursday — is the John Deere Classic in Silvis, Illinois, making it convenient for professional golfers to make an appearance in Cedar Rapids beforehand.

Four golfers in the  top 21 of the Official World Golf Ranking will attend — Jordan Speith, Johnson, Steve Stricker, and Jason Dufner. Speith, a 20-year-old, won the Deere Classic last year for his first PGA Tour win, and he was the co-runner-up at the Masters in April. Other PGA Tour players participating are Ben Crane, Lucas Glover, Davis Love III, Scott Stallings, and Kyle Stanley.

In addition to the PGA Tour players, Hawkeye announcer Gary Dolphin will participate. Ex-Hawkeye stars Greg Brunner, Matt Gatens, Bob Hansen, Danan Hughes, and Chuck Long will also be in attendance.

Last year’s tournament drew 3,500 spectators and raised $800,000 for Johnson’s charities.

The money raised this year will support “Kids on Course,” a program at Harrison and Van Buren Elementary Schools in Cedar Rapids. According to the Zach Johnson Foundation, the program is designed to inspire confidence in students to recognize their academic and individual potential by providing creative and incentive opportunities that connect students and families to community and school.

— by Jon Duree

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