The annual event raises funds for the Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund in support of the Wills Group’s Community Engagement Signature Programs: Nourishing Children and Families and Reimagining Outdoor Spaces
The Wills Group, a family-owned company headquartered in La Plata, Maryland, announced today more than $374,000 raised at the seventh annual Blackie Wills Golf Classic held at Turf Valley Resort in Ellicott City, Maryland on Monday, September 11.
Since 2017, the Wills Group and its companies, including Dash In, Splash In ECO Car Wash, and SMO Motor Fuels, have raised more than $2 million at the Blackie Wills Golf Classic in support of local and regional non-profit organizations across the Mid-Atlantic region. Working closely with community organizations and community members, the Wills Group works to engage the voices and talents of those who know their communities best to address immediate needs and identify opportunities to nourish children and their families and reimagine local outdoor spaces.
“Our annual Blackie Wills Golf Classic is instrumental in advancing our Community Engagement goals, and I am overwhelmed by the generosity of our sponsors. We surpassed our fundraising goal this year with an additional commitment of $50,000 made during the Golf Classic on top of the $374,000 raised through sponsorships,” said Blackie Wills, President and CEO of the Wills Group. “These dollars will support our work in partnership with Oasis Fresh Foods Market to provide essential food resources to residents in Indian Head, Maryland, a longstanding food desert. We are thankful to our employees and business and community partners for their support that enables the Wills Group to give back to local communities across the Mid-Atlantic region year-over-year.”
For nearly 100 years, the Wills Group’s commitment to community giving has been grounded in the Wills Group’s purpose – Lives in Motion – an expression of the company’s goal to move people forward toward their goals and dreams through its two Community Engagement Signature Programs: Nourishing Children and Families and Reimagining Outdoor Spaces.
The seventh annual Blackie Wills Golf Classic brought together community and business partners to raise awareness for the need in our communities and to affirm the Wills Group’s commitment to Community Engagement in its local neighborhoods. The event also served as an opportunity for the Wills Group to share the work accomplished in 2023, including $450,000 in grants to seven local nonprofit organizations that address both immediate hunger concerns and long-term solutions to combat food insecurity as part of the company’s Nourishing Children and Families Program. In 2023, the Wills Group also completed its second park revitalization project through its Reimagining Outdoor Spaces Program in Tanglewood Park, Maryland. This revitalization project included a new basketball park with a vibrant mural, an ADA accessible path, and new park benches and landscaping.
“Now, when we visit [Tanglewood Park], there are children and families enjoying the space, playing on the basketball court and hosting cookouts. It’s really wonderful to see,” said Mavis Turner, President of MTC Art Studios. “Working with the Wills Group, we were able to bridge people with partnerships to bring the community’s vision for this park to life.”
Wills Group’s community partner organizations attending the Blackie Wills Golf Classic included Capital Area Food Bank, Melwood, MTC Art Studios, and Oasis Fresh Foods Market in Indian Head, MD; allowing participants to learn from each organization directly about the impact of Wills Group’s support and their work in local communities to address food insecurity and create vibrant outdoor spaces.
For more information about the Wills Group’s Community Engagement efforts and how the Wills Group works to keep Lives in Motion visit: willsgroup.com/community.
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About Wills Group, Inc.
Headquartered in La Plata, Maryland, the Wills Group is Great Place to Work Certified™ and has nearly 300 retail locations across the Mid-Atlantic region, including Dash In, Splash In ECO Car Wash, and SMO Motor Fuels. A family-owned company since 1926 with expertise in convenience retailing, fuels marketing, and commercial real estate, the Wills Group prides itself on keeping customers,’ employees’ and communities’ Lives in Motion. For more information about the Wills Group, visit willsgroup.com.
About The Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund
The Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund was created in remembrance of former Wills Group President Julian Blacklock “Blackie” Wills and honors his commitment to giving back to local communities. The Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund actively reinvests in the community in order to help keep lives in motion and ensure people in need have opportunities to achieve their hopes and dreams. The Blackie Wills Community Leadership Fund (BWCLF) is a component fund within Chesapeake Charities, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. The Chesapeake Charities financial statement is available on their website, www.chesapeakecharities.org, at their office located at 101 Log Canoe Circle, Suite 0, Stevensville, MD 21666, or through the Secretary of State, Charitable Division, State House, Annapolis, MD 21401.