The Ledgestone Insurance Open wrapped up in dramatic fashion last weekend, as the final round in the MPO division was canceled due to inclement weather, leaving a rare co-championship for the title. The tournament also boasted the most players and one of the biggest payouts in PDGA history.
As if that was not enough, Tournament Director Nate Heinold and his team made an incredibly generous donation to five different charities totaling $200,000 with the Paul McBeth Foundation being one of the beneficiaries.
Prior to the event, the Ledgestone Insurance Open team had already committed to take on the Medellin, Colombia, project as a Silver Level Partner. That project will result in two different 9 hole courses being installed before the year concludes, with all of the materials being built in the country. Known for going above and beyond, though, the team decided it didn’t want to stop there.
On Tuesday afternoon Heinold informed the Foundation that the event would no longer be making the agreed upon donation. Instead, it would be sending a staggering $40,000.
“We can’t thank Nate and his entire hard-working team enough for this level of support that will allow us to move our mission forward on a whole new level,” PMF Executive Director Dustin Leatherman said. “As an organization we are truly honored and humbled. We have had many people contribute to the organization on different levels, and we are appreciative of each and every gift. The generosity we have seen so far has allowed us to move many of our timelines forward, and this is the type of donation that will require us to take a look at our objectives and think even bigger.”
In addition to this donation, Heinold has already committed a significant amount of his limited time serving as the Co-Chairman of the Board of Directors. That front-row seat helped inform his decision-making about the donation.
“Sitting on the BOD of the Foundation gives me a unique insight into the work that is being done,” Heinold said. “There are so many great charities to support, but my biggest personal passion is disc golf. I want to do my part to help find the next country or region where disc golf is going to boom. This Foundation, by investing in underserved areas, is going to help do just that.”
Heinold has also had a long friendship with Paul McBeth, and their bond has made for a natural fit between the two organizations.
“Paul is a phenomenal ambassador for the sport of disc golf,” Heinold said. “Not only is he a great competitor, but he is a genuine person who wants to grow the sport for the betterment of the entire game. Seeing his passion and vision makes me want to continue to grow what I am doing at my events to continue to support his vision.”
The Ledgestone Insurance Open has a long history of supporting great causes, and has partnered with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Peoria since 2014. Going into this year’s event, Ledgestone had already donated $182,000 to St. Jude, including a $60,000 contribution in 2020. In 2021 that donation was doubled and St. Jude will be receiving $120,000 to continue their impactful work in the community and beyond.
With so many historic elements to the 2021 event it is hard to imagine how anymore can be accomplished, but history would suggest that Nate and his team will find a way.