Galloway to host ShopRite LPGA Classic through 2016

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The ShopRite LPGA Classic Presented by Acer will remain in Galloway at least three more years, according to Wakefern Food Corp., the Ladies Professional Golf Association, Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club, and Eiger Marketing Group.

Contract extensions through 2016 were announced Thursday, March 13.

The tournament will be held Monday through Sunday, May 26-June 1 on the Bay Course at the Stockton Seaview. 

It will be the 16th time the Seaview has hosted the tournament.

Initially known as the Atlantic City Classic, the event began in 1986 and was held at the Seaview its first two years. From 1988-1997 the tournament was held in Somers Point at a venue known as the Sands Country Club until 1991 and since then as Greate Bay Country Club.

The Classic moved back to Galloway in 1998, but was not held the three years from 2007-2009.

The tournament was brought back in 2010 – the year the club was acquired by the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey – and has remained there since, being renewed yearly.

The tournament was renamed the ShopRite LPGA Classic in 1992 when Wakefern Food became the title sponsor.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Seaview golf club, and Wakefern's 20th year as the title sponsor.

“Wakefern has been a wonderful partner of the LPGA over the past two decades and has consistently put on one of the premiere events on our schedule,” LPGA Commissioner Michael Whan said. “Our players love returning to the Jersey Shore each year and playing at such a first-class host club in Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club. We look forward to celebrating the 20th anniversary of their partnership and many more years.”

Since 1992, ShopRite has donated more than $27 million to charities from money raised through sponsoring the LPGA tournaments.

In 2013, ShopRite raised nearly $1.3 million for charitable organizations in ShopRite service areas, aiding hospitals, food banks, educational institutions and other organizations.

“Wakefern has long been a proud supporter of the LPGA,” said Joseph Colalillo, chairman and CEO of Wakefern Food Corp., a retailer-owned cooperative whose members individually own and operate ShopRite supermarkets.

“As we enter the 20th year of our partnership, we look forward to the opportunity to serve our neighbors and communities who benefit from the charitable contributions raised at this event. Together, ShopRite and the LPGA have given millions of dollars to help those in need, and I can’t think of a better reason to continue this tradition,” Colalillo said.

Stockton President Herman J. Saatkamp Jr. said the tournament gives the local economy a considerable boost.

“Last year the tournament provided more than $13.6 million in direct spending to regional businesses. We believe this year’s event will be even more successful – both on and off this historic course,” he said.

Players will compete for a share of a $1.5 million purse in the 54-hole, LPGA-sanctioned event.

The tournament has crowned such champions as Juli Inkster, Nancy Lopez, Betsy King, Annika Sorenstam, Stacy Lewis and 2013 champion Karrie Webb.

A week of pretournament events, including what is billed as the largest pro-am in professional golf, will lead to three days of championship play starting Friday, May 30 that will be televised live on Golf Channel.

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