Tiger Woods celebrates 21st annual Tiger Jam with Janet Jackson, golf & poker
Tiger Woods returned to Las Vegas this past weekend to host Tiger Jam at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino. Among the highlights of the weekend for participants in attendance at the 21st annual charity event, was a chance to experience Janet Jackson’s critically acclaimed Las Vegas Residency, “Metamorphosis.” The two-day charity event held Friday, May 24 and Saturday, May 25 brought a jam-packed weekend of activities to Las Vegas to raise funds for TGR Foundation.
“Tiger Jam was a tremendous success this year,” said Tiger Woods. “I am grateful to Janet Jackson, our guests who attended, along with all the sponsors and donors who support the event every year. This support helps us reach our goal at TGR Foundation to reach millions of kids through education.”
The list of festivities throughout the weekend was vintage Tiger Jam, including two days of golf, a charity poker tournament, VIP reception, live and silent auctions, concert and post-party. However, the 2019 edition featured a mix of special surprises and new venues that kept the guests entertained all weekend long.
Woods teed off the weekend Friday morning at the exclusive Shadow Creek Golf Course with a private golf exhibition and Q&A session for Tiger Jam guests. The 2019 Masters champion wowed guests on the range, showcasing his practice routine while driving dozens of balls into the Vegas sun. He also opened up to the crowd with unique insights during the exhibition, answering guest questions about his Masters win, swing tips and golfing as a child with his father. Singer-songwriter Kelley James warmed up the crowd with his trademark freestyle rap dedicated to Woods as he started the exhibition. Throughout the day at Shadow Creek, guests were treated to not only great golf but also a gourmet breakfast and barbeque lunch, ready-to-drink craft beverage stations with B&K Classic Cocktails and The Long Drink along with the opportunity to test drive a custom Phat Scooter on the 8th hole. Former professional football star and Fox Sports host Reggie Bush, former Major League Baseball All-Star Shane Victorino and “The Bachelor” host Chris Harrison joined Woods and guests for the day.
Tiger’s Poker Night presented by the World Poker Tour® (WPT®), held at Whiskey Down inside MGM Grand, started the evening festivities on Friday. The eighth annual charity poker tournament has become a staple of Tiger Jam weekend, raising millions for TGR Foundation since its inception. Throughout the evening, guests enjoyed delicious dining stations while sampling fine wine from Justin Winery and premium whiskey from Uncle Nearest Whiskey. The event was emceed by 15-time bracelet winner and WPT Raw Deal analyst Phil Hellmuth who played in the event while keeping the crowd entertained with live commentary and real-time odds. Kelley James returned to entertain the crowd with songs dedicated to a few special guests in the tournament including host Woods and NBA All-Star Russell Westbrook. Westbrook joined Woods, WPT’s Vince Van Patten and Lynn Gilmartin, professional poker player Scotty Nguyen and mixed martial artist Tito Ortiz at the tables against more than 40 amateurs. Each player went all-in for TGR Foundation and the event culminated in Daniel Shak as Tiger’s Poker Night champion.
Saturday’s activities teed off back at Shadow Creek for the Tiger Jam Sponsor Golf Tournament hosted by GOLF Channel’s Blair O’Neal. Upon arrival, guests warmed up with O’Neal on the range while working on their chipping skills at the Chippo Golf station. Shadow Creek tested the amateur’s skills all day, but each foursome found relief on the par 3 17th as the groups were able to use a tee shot hit by O’Neal. Players were nourished throughout the round thanks to a feast at the turn and ample Fiji Water and Coca-Cola products, giving them plenty of energy to go for a hole-in-one on the par 3 13th to win a Genesis G80.
A highpoint of the weekend came during the VIP reception Saturday evening which began with a highlight video of Tiger’s recent triumph at the Masters followed by Chris Harrison leading the close to 600 guests in a toast with Tiger to celebrate the victory. That moment was followed by a compelling conversation with Woods and Harrison about his win. TGR Foundation Earl Woods Scholar Chiamaka “Chia” Obilo, who is a second-year student at Harvard University studying Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology and Anthropology, joined Woods and Harrison on stage to discuss obstacles she has had to overcome and all she’s accomplished and hopes to accomplish both personally and professionally.
The VIP reception featured a dynamic live and silent auction and a few surprises for the crowd. The silent auction included a number of in-demand items from Woods including an autographed Masters pin flag, a replica Tiger Woods’ Monster golf bag, a set of TaylorMade P7TW Irons and a trip to the TaylorMade Kingdom that included a set of fitted clubs. As the silent auction concluded, guests were wowed with a surprise pop-up dance performance by the legendary Jabbawockeez. Kira Kazantsev, host of Golf Advisor Living on GOLF Channel, co-hosted the live auction capping off a great evening of raising money for TGR Foundation’s college-access programs. A few of the top earning auction packages included the Full Swing Virtualgreen Curve 1, a golf trip to Diamante and a Genesis G70, the 2019 North American Car of the Year. For the second straight year, the opportunity to caddie for Woods at the Hero World Challenge was in high demand, earning a $75,000 winning bid for TGR Foundation.
Following the live auction, the excitement grew as attendees made their way to the Park Theater at the new Park MGM resort to experience the first leg of Janet Jackson’s residency “Metamorphosis.” The show gave Tiger Jam guests a new experience that featured explosive dance numbers and Jackson’s chart-topping hits while enjoying some of the best seats in the state-of-the-art residency theater. One of the highlights of the show was the celebration of the 30th anniversary of her ground-breaking album Rhythm Nation. Woods introduced Jackson to the stage and acknowledged their shared mission to create a world where opportunity is universal and potential is limitless for all. After the performance Woods, Obilo and several donors had a chance to meet Jackson backstage.
To culminate the ultimate Vegas weekend, guests enjoyed themselves at Tiger Jam’s epic post-party at On The Record, Vegas’s new speakeasy and club. The club’s 80s inspired private rooms were outfitted in Tiger Jam décor and offered guests cocktails, late-night bites and incredible music capped off with GRAMMY and Oscar Award-winner Mark Ronson in the DJ booth.
As TGR Foundation nears reaching its millionth student, Tiger Jam continues to be a leader among charity events. TGR Live continues to reinvent Tiger Jam, now in its 21st year, with new, unique experiences for the sold-out crowd.