By Amanda Cantor
Braselton, GA – The American Junior Golf Association announced the Justin Thomas Junior Championship received the Junior-Am Fundraising Award, Charitable Giving Award and Social Media Award for 2022. The most awards won by the event in one year, the event played at Harmony Landing Country Club in Goshen, Kentucky, has now won 10 AJGA tournament awards since its inception in 2016.
“These awards are a direct result of our sponsors, our committee, and the Big Spring membership and staff, embracing the Justin Thomas Jr Championship,” said Tournament Chairman, Mike Thomas. “The awards acknowledge the commitment of everyone involved, including the AJGA staff, on making this tournament a great success. Our goal from day one was to have the best junior golf event in the country, and while these awards confirm their efforts, we will continue to improve and make this an event that every junior golfer strives to participate in. It is rewarding to see the monies raised benefit many charities, including junior golfers, in our community.”
Each year, the AJGA presents awards to the tournaments with the best individual hospitality, Junior-Am fundraising, charitable giving and volunteer base. Awards are also given to the events with engaged media and social media participation. Finally, the AJGA recognizes the year’s most outstanding golf professional, superintendent and golf course executive, as well as the most game-changing event, best new event, best Neuropeak Pro™ Preview Series tournament, best Ninja Junior All-Star Series tournament, best Invitational and overall tournament of the year. Tournament awards for the 2022 season will be presented on-site at the 2023 tournament.
The Junior-Am Fundraising Award reflects the dedication the tournament committee has to giving back to charity and the support the event garners from the local community. In 2022, the event fundraised from the double shotgun Junior-Am held at Harmony Landing on August 2nd.
“The effort put in by the community to raise money for charity is unlike anything I’ve ever seen before,” said AJGA Senior Midwest Regional Director, Ryan Flanagan. “It is no surprise that the event has received 10 tournament awards in just seven years. Everyone involved is extremely passionate about its success and works hard to make it one of the top events on the AJGA schedule.”
The money raised from the event went to the Justin Thomas Foundation and the AJGA’s Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant. The Justin Thomas Foundation positively impacts children in need, junior golf, and military families with the intent of helping all achieve their full potential.
The goals of the Justin Thomas Foundation reflect the altruistic aspirations of the Thomas family. By funding programming and fulfilling requests of those in need, they are committed to showing compassion, displaying kindness, and making a difference in the world.
The AJGA’s ACE Grant provides financial assistance to junior golfers who have the skills to compete on a national level but not the financial means. The tournament has raised money for the ACE Grant since the event began in 2016 and in 2018, Justin Thomas endowed an AJGA ACE Grant to provide a junior golfer from Kentucky with financial assistance each year in perpetuity.
In addition to the Junior-Am Fundraising Award, the event also received the Charitable Giving Award. This award goes to the tournament that donates the most money to charity. The Justin Thomas Junior Championship was awarded the Charitable Giving Award after donating an impressive $135,978 to charity, the most of any AJGA event in 2022.
Lastly, the event also received the Social Media award, which was selected based on an event’s success with engaging local media, and overall creativity and interaction on social media. On Instagram, the social posts from the event had 37,416 likes and reached 1,664,887 individuals. On Twitter, the hashtag for the event, #JustinThomasJr, reached 2,903,879 individuals on the platform.
Justin Thomas was on-site for the event again in 2022 and was available to the players during the Junior-Am to meet and greet, as well as take photos and sign autographs. Justin’s parents, Mike and Jani Thomas, and his wife Jill, were all also on-site to help facilitate the event.
To elevate the experience for the juniors, each player participating in the event had access to their own personal locker throughout the week that was filled with custom Justin Thomas tournament gifts as well as a 28-page full-color tournament program.
The Justin Thomas Junior Championship returns to the AJGA schedule in 2023 and will be played at Harmony Landing Country Club, April 20-23.
For more information about the AJGA Tournament Awards or the tournament, please contact Amanda Cantor (firstname.lastname@example.org) in the AJGA Communications Department.