In support of the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy (JRLA), sports legends, entertainers and local celebrities joined guests for the 13th Annual JRLA Celebrity Golf Classic, a PGD Global production on August 20-21 in Detroit. The weekend was hosted by University of Michigan "Fab Five" Legend, NBA Star and Multi-Media Personality Jalen Rose who founded the school in 2011. The highly anticipated event raised over $150,000 to benefit the public charter high school located in the zip code where Jalen grew up.
DETROIT, Sept. 19, 2023 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- Images from the event can be accessed https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1iv8_THSfhRUBk36hIlaGDZ2tC5s9RfX5
The annual event began on Sunday, August 20 with nearly 200 celebrities and guests arriving at MGM Grand Detroit, the official host hotel, before heading over to Topgolf Swing Suite for the Kick-off Pairings Party presented by BetMGM. Guests arrived in style with a live DJ while they enjoyed interactive games in a comfy lounge, rich cuisine and signature cocktails presented by Bacardi Rum, D'Usse, Highclere Castle Gin, Patron El Cielo and Tito's Handmade Vodka.
The evening was hosted by Jalen Rose alongside golf professionals, event producers and sisters, Nisha and Seema Sadekar, who greeted guests and opened the program. Highlights from previous years were shared and laughs were had reminiscing the good times. Since 2018, JRLA has distributed a leadership award in conjunction with the celebratory weekend. The award recognizes those who are truly dedicated to the mission of uplifting the JRLA scholars. The 2023 JRLA Leadership Award recipient was the Ballmer Group for their $2 Million donation to support the Academy's capital campaign and post-secondary programming. Jalen concluded the program by recognizing the school staff for their hard work and thanking the celebrities who took time out of their busy schedules to support the event. The kick-off continues to unite those who believe in the mission of JRLA.
The excitement reached its peak the morning of Monday, August 21, as the historic Detroit Golf Club hosted the Golf Classic presented by Tom Gores and Platinum Equity - who celebrated their remarkable 10th year of unwavering support for the event and cause. Each golfer received a PUMA branded gift bag and golf shirt as well as other premium items including gear from Roots of Fight, a media, lifestyle and apparel brand that celebrates the improbable achievements of today's most legendary athletes, innovators, and cultural icons. Guests made their way to the clubhouse for brunch sponsored by Fox Rothschild as well as a Bloody Mary Bar presented by Tito's Handmade Vodka and Cheurlin Champagne Mimosas.
Participants were greeted by Jalen Rose and host Seema Sadekar for opening ceremonies on the putting green flanked with partner flags overlooking the beautiful first fairway. Jalen and Seema welcomed and thanked all of the partners and participants then introduced the celebrity guests playing in the tournament field. Celebrity highlights this year included first-timers, including but not limited to, award winning actor Anthony Mackie, NBA All Star Charles Oakley, Grammy Award nominated musician Dwele, Miss Michigan/reality TV star Taylor Hale and three-time NFL All-Pro Sterling Sharpe. With a competitive tournament field of 230 golfers occupying both courses, participants eagerly competed for the tournament title while knowing they were making an impact in the Detroit community.
After the shotgun start, the DJ continued to spin while Jalen Rose made his way around the course to greet all guests and take pictures while cheering them on and hitting a few shots. The Kresge Foundation and Comerica sponsored the putting green. As guests made the turn, they enjoyed a special "Tito's At The Turn" experience featuring specialty Tito's Handmade Vodka cocktails as well as a cigar bar sponsored by Bacardi. All participants had the opportunity at a hole-in-one challenge to win a new JEEP vehicle as well as other ancillary prizes. Guests tracked their scoring live on handheld devices sponsored by Others First. Tee-boxes on both the North and South course featured a "JRLA Future Leader" sign highlighting a Class of 2023 scholar and generous sponsor.
After the round, BetMGM and Stride presented the official JRLA Celebrity Golf Classic Playoffs, featuring a $5,000 Putting Challenge and a One-Million Dollar Shot Challenge. Guests then gathered around the Clubhouse Lounge presented by Navigant Oak and JP Morgan Chase for dinner and awards for top finishing groups and other accolades. The highlight of the closing ceremony was the victory speech by newcomer Anthony Mackie.
"What began as a dream for my old neighborhood has become a reality and I am humbled to have just started our thirteenth year of operations," said Rose. "On average, Michigan public charter schools receive about 20% less funding per pupil than conventional public schools, yet are 32% more cost-effective than the average conventional public schools in the same city. In addition, we get zero state funding for our facility which is why this event is so paramount for our success. I truly appreciate all those who supported our efforts whether in person or from afar!"
In addition to bridging a funding gap, JRLA is in the midst of a $10 Million capital campaign to expand its existing facility with a much needed high school gymnasium, locker rooms, weight room, additional classrooms and a dedicated main entrance. If you would like to support their efforts please visit: https://www.jrladetroit.com/supportourwork.
The event continues to be a tremendous pillar of success for JRLA and again proves to be the premier celebrity, lifestyle and golf event in Detroit. For additional 2023 and previous year highlights, please visit the official tournament website http://www.jalenrosegolfclassic.com.
About Jalen Rose Leadership Academy
Jalen Rose Leadership Academy (JRLA) is an open enrollment, tuition-free public charter high school. The Academy began its first academic year in September 2011 and currently serves 425 ninth through twelfth grade scholars and nearly 900 alumni from metro-Detroit. JRLA works to empower its scholars to develop the strength of character, skills and knowledge needed to matriculate, be great in and graduate from college or a post-secondary institution so they have opportunities to be successful in the competitive world and take care of themselves and the people they love. JRLA is off to a strong start, having graduated more than 97% of its scholars with 100% of all graduates gaining college, trade/technical school or military acceptance. JRLA has achieved a 71% college matriculation rate within a year of graduation compared to a state average of 65% and continues to focus on improving college persistence for its alumni. More info: http://jrladetroit.com.
About PGD Global
Play Golf Designs, Inc. (PGD Global) is a golf marketing and events company, directing and participating in luxury events for some of the world's most legendary athletes, brands, entertainers and organizations. PGD blends pop culture and entertainment, creating the most unique, innovative golf events and experiences for each client. PGD Global focuses on celebrating diversity and inclusion in golf while welcoming women to the game with open arms. Specializing in connecting golf to the modern world of trends, truth and fashion, PGD Global operates golf and lifestyle events and experiences all around the country and virtually, welcoming new golfers and businesses to the game. Visit http://www.pgdglobal.com. Follow PGD Global on Twitter or Instagram at @PGDGlobal or on Facebook at http://facebook.com/PlayGolfDesigns.
SOURCE Play Golf Designs, Inc. (PGD Global)