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SAN ANTONIO -- The 2007 Valero Texas Open, which begins today, has raised $8 million for charity, achieving the company's goal to surpass the total raised by the 2006 Valero Texas Open, which at the time was the most money raised for charity by a PGA TOUR event, according to a news release from Valero Energy Corp.
"We're very pleased that we've been able to raise such a tremendous amount of money for children’s charities," said Joe Gorder, Valero's executive vice president for marketing and supply, who is heading up the chain’s efforts in this year's tournament. "Thanks to our sponsors and business partners, we have once again positioned ourselves to be among the top fundraising events on the PGA TOUR. And of course, none of it would be possible without the dedication of the hundreds of volunteers who have helped plan and run these events. Everyone can be very proud of their efforts and of the difference they're going to make in the lives of countless children through the funds they've raised."
Charity funds are raised through the sponsorships sold during the Valero Texas Open and the Valero Benefit for Children Golf Classic, which will take place Monday. A record-breaking 2,200 participants will be playing golf on nine San Antonio-area courses at this year's Benefit for Children Golf Classic. Funds raised will benefit children's charities in all the communities where Valero has operations throughout the U.S., Canada and Aruba. Valero employees nominate and choose each of the children’s charities that benefit from the events, the company stated.
Golf San Antonio (GSA), which organizes the Valero Texas Open, raises charitable dollars through its Pro-Am events; the Birdies for Charity program in which nonprofit organizations solicit pledges for every birdie made during tournament week; and the Chip In for Schools program that allows schools to sell discounted tournament tickets and keep all the proceeds.
"After making a record-setting donation in 2006, the Valero Texas Open couldn't be more thrilled to have increased our giving in 2007 so significantly. With the support of Valero, their business partners and the San Antonio community, the Valero Texas Open is changing people's lives for the better. We couldn't be prouder," said Tom Stephenson, volunteer chairman of the Valero Texas Open.
The Valero Texas Open begins today and runs through Oct. 7 at the Westin La Cantera Resort. Tickets to the tournament can be purchased through schools participating in the Chip In for Schools program or by going online at www.golfsanantonio.org. Those purchasing tickets directly from Golf San Antonio can select a participating school to receive the funds. Additionally, tickets can be purchased for $15 at area Valero Corner Stores. Tickets can also be purchased at the tournament gate for $20. Children (17 and younger) and spectators with a valid student or military ID will receive free admission.
Valero Energy Corp., a Fortune 500 company based in San Antonio, is one of the nation’s largest retail operators with approximately 5,800 retail and branded wholesale outlets in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean under various brand names including Valero, Diamond Shamrock, Shamrock, Ultramar and Beacon.