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Volunteers, ambassadors donating to community ahead of Great Lakes Bay Invitational

Three local organizations are driving home the importance of giving back ahead of the LPGA’s Great Lakes Bay Invitational next month in mid-Michigan.
Published: Jun. 13, 2022 at 5:36 PM EDT
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MIDLAND, Mich. (WNEM) - Three local organizations are driving home the importance of giving back ahead of the LPGA’s Great Lakes Bay Invitational next month in mid-Michigan.

“This is just one of the many initiatives that Dow kind of puts on in the region, in the Great Lakes Bay area. And you know, we all feel better when we can help others and I think that’s the main purpose of today,” said Suzann Pettersen, sustainability ambassador for Dow.

Dow volunteers and ambassadors kicked off the countdown to the Great Lakes Bay Invitational Monday afternoon with a drive-thru food giveaway.

Pettersen is a former LPGA golfer. Both her and current LPGA golfer Katherine Kirk helped out at the East Side Soup Kitchen.

“There’s stem in every part of our life. Whether it’s the clothing we wear or the medicines we take. I mean, how we get to and from work or the golf course,” Kirk said.

Kirk is also a Dow stem ambassador. She announced she will be teaming up with fellow golfer Amy Olson again.

“One of my best friends on tour is Amy Olson and we happened to be playing ping pong at a tournament and we’re like, ‘hey, have you got a partner yet for the Dow?’ And she said. ‘no.’ And I was like, ‘you want to team up?’ So, thankfully she said yes and it’s been fun playing with her the last couple years,” Kirk said.

Volunteers gave away 13,000 pounds of food to those in need on Monday.

Dow donated more than 4,300 pounds last year of unused food from the tournament.

“It’s a lot of material. How can you reuse, recycle. I mean, we have all the red mesh that’s from the GLBI that’s kind of covered on the golf course. We all recycle that. Last year, we recycled into golfing tees. So, there’s, there’s a second life that goes in the general term,” Pettersen said.

The tournament had an economic impact of more than $13 million last year, and Dow plans on giving away more than $1 million this year to local organizations.