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Thunderbird Charities awards Special Olympics Arizona $1 million grant

Special Olympics Arizona

Special Olympics Arizona (SOAZ) has been awarded a $1 million grant from Thunderbird Charities for the development of its new State Office and Distribution Center, which will break ground this spring.

The new distribution center will increase the amount of equipment and training supplies for athletes, which will ultimately allow the organization to reach more individuals with disabilities throughout Arizona by creating more active teams and competitions.

The building will help meet the increased demand for SOAZ’s programs while serving as a home, distribution, uniform production and equipment center and an efficient facility for youth and inclusive sports in Arizona.

– Carlos Sugich, Big Chief of The Thunderbirds

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The Thunderbirds support St. Mary’s Kids Cafe®

St. Mary's Kids Cafe

Sadly, Arizona ranks 47th out of 50 states in the number of children who may not know where their next meal is coming from. One in four children in Arizona lives in poverty and is at risk of going to bed hungry tonight.

In an effort to support St. Mary’s Food Bank in its mission to see that no children go to bed hungry, The Thunderbirds are proud to help fund the St. Mary’s Food Bank Kids Cafe®.

The Kids Cafe provides 6,000 meals daily to children, including 1,000 hot meals, at more than 130 sites throughout Arizona.

– Carlos Sugich, Big Chief of The Thunderbirds

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Waste Management Phoenix Open ticket information

Tournament tickets

General Admission to The Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community is available starting at $45 per day, for Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday. On Friday and Saturday, general admission starts at $60.

General admission is free to the public on Monday and Tuesday, courtesy of Ford. Children age 17 and under are free when accompanied by an adult. The Waste Management Phoenix Open offers first responders and active, reserve and retired military daily free admission with one accompanying guest. Hospitality event badges start at $250 each.

Tickets are available at the gate daily or online here.

– Chance Cozby, 2019 Tournament Chairman

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VIDEO: The iconic Waste Management Phoenix Open 16th Hole

16th hole

Among the best-loved traditions of the Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community is the 16th Hole.

An entire stadium is built around this hole, and – on average – more than 16,000 come out to experience it each year. Unlike nearly any other experience on the PGA TOUR, fans are encouraged to cheer, chant and even sing at Hole 16, nicknamed “The Coliseum.” It’s also the hole where Tiger Woods famously hit a hole-in-one in 1997, at just 21 years old.

Here’s a look at Hole 16 from ESPN’s own Tom Rinaldi.

– Chance Cozby, 2019 Tournament Chairman

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VIDEO: Waste Management Phoenix Open grants cancer survivor’s wish

Morgan Comer

At its heart, the Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community is about helping others. Case in point, in 2018 they granted the ultimate wish to Morgan Comer, one amazingly resilient 17-year-old. Comer survived a rare liver disease at 10 months old, which required a liver transplant. Then, 14 years later, she was diagnosed with cancer.

She idolized PGA TOUR star Jordan Spieth. Thanks to The Thunderbirds and ESPN’s “My Wish” series, she was able to caddie for him. He even had her attempt a birdie putt!

Watch as her lifetime wish is granted.

– Carlos Sugich, Big Chief of The Thunderbirds