'Magnificent Moments' campaign to benefit two Chicago-area charities

A series of Ryder Cup-related charitable "magnificent moments" in downtown Chicago, including a food-and-music event and a public art exhibit, will raise money for two local charities -- The Illinois PGA Foundation and Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana.

CHICAGO -- The Magnificent Moments campaign, an officially sanctioned charitable fundraising campaign of the 2012 Ryder Cup, on Dec. 5 announced an exciting schedule of events leading up to next year's matches at storied Medinah Country Club near Chicago.

The campaign will raise money for two local charities -- The Illinois PGA Foundation and Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana -- by hosting a series of charitable "magnificent moments" in downtown Chicago.

"With the 2012 Ryder Cup being played right here in Chicago, we couldn't be more excited that the PGA of America is sanctioning 'Magnificent Moments' to help build excitement and support these great Chicagoland charities," said Doug Porter, CEO of Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana. "For the downtown Chicago and greater North Michigan Avenue area where the world's largest Ronald McDonald House® is being constructed, it's truly a partnership of Chicagoans helping their neighbors."

The Magnificent Moments campaign got off to a rousing start this past September during the year-out celebration of the 2012 Ryder Cup. U.S. Ryder Cup Team Captain Davis Love III and European Team Captain Jose Maria Olazábal raised $100,000 by participating in the Ryder Cup Captains' Charity Golf Shot, which featured each captain attempting three 220-yard shots from the 16th-Floor Terrace of the Trump International Hotel & Tower® Chicago onto a golf green custom-built on a barge floating in the middle of the Chicago River.

As Magnificent Moments looks to build on this great opening event, two major magnificent moments leading up to the Ryder Cup will include a "Bagpipes & Blues" event at the iconic Field Museum and a public art exhibit, "Tartan Art on The Avenue."

The "Bagpipes & Blues" event for both Europeans and Americans will be held on September 27, 2012, the eve of the opening day of the Ryder Cup. In a blend of Ryder Cup and Chicago indulgences, the event will showcase culinary favorites from both Europe and the United States, and include a world-class auction featuring Ryder Cup experiences and merchandise. Music will include the distinctive sounds of Scottish bagpipes and the iconic Chicago blues. The event will be open to the public, with tickets available for purchase.

The art exhibit "Tartan Art on The Avenue" will be on display during the month of September 2012 along Michigan Avenue and at other iconic Chicago locations. Large golf balls will be decorated by local, international and celebrity artists. Internationally acclaimed artist LeRoy Neiman, who is an alumnus of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, will be "Honorary Chair, Artist Extraordinaire" of Tartan Art. Neiman will also paint the first golf ball that will tour Chicago next year for special occasions.

The initiator for the Magnificent Moments campaign was Bruce Florine, President and Managing Director of Madison Collective, Inc., a Chicago based company. Florine tragically passed away six weeks ago.

"Bruce's passion for this project was contagious, and the plan flourished through his leadership," Porter said. "All of the components are in place to continue Magnificent Moments and make it the best it can be, not only in Bruce's memory, but also for the city of Chicago and the charities that it will benefit. The money raised will help a lot of families, and that is an incredible legacy to leave behind."

For more information, please visit www.magnificentmoments.org.

About the Illinois PGA Foundation

The Illinois PGA Foundation is a 501 © 3 organization that serves as the charitable arm of the Illinois Section PGA, one of the 41 geographical regions that comprises the Professional Golfers Association of America (PGA of America). Established in 1991, the organization focuses its community efforts on promoting the goodwill and growth of the game with an emphasis on activities that benefit youth.

About Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana

The mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana (RMHC®-CNI) is to improve the health, well-being and education of children through its core programs. Four Houses provide a "home away from home" to keep families together. To continue serving families in crisis, RMHC®-CNI is building a new Ronald McDonald House® -- the largest in the nation -- in Chicago, due to open in 2012.

About the 2012 Ryder Cup

The Ryder Cup, among the last great professional sporting events where winning, and not prize money, is its own reward, spans 37 competitions over 82 years. The competition was born in 1927, when enterprising English seed merchant Samuel Ryder commissioned the casting of a gold chalice that bears his name. The U.S. Team defeated Great Britain, 9½ to 2½, in the inaugural matches in Worcester, Mass.

Since then, the Ryder Cup has expanded to involve the finest players of Europe. Except for a span (1939-45) during World War II and following the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks upon America, the Ryder Cup has been held biennially with the U.S. and Europe alternating as host.

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About the PGA of America

Celebrating its 95th year, The PGA of America has maintained a twofold mission of its founders: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf.

By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, The PGA enables its professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in a multi-billion dollar golf industry.

By creating and delivering dramatic world-class championships and exciting and enjoyable promotions that are viewed as the best of their class in the golf industry, The PGA of America elevates the public's interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere. The PGA of America brand represents the very best in golf.