Toby Keith & Friends Golf Classic Celebrates 20th Anniversary May 31 And June 1

The Toby Keith & Friends Golf Classic returns to Norman May 31- June 1 for its 20th edition in support of OK Kids Korral, the cost-free home for families of children dealing with critical illnesses.

Eli Young Band, who opened for Toby on tour and was signed to his record label Show Dog Nashville, will headline the denim and diamonds-themed dinner and auction Friday (5/31) at Riverwind Casino with support from local band, The Bottom of The Barrel. Toby’s long-time friends – Bob Stoops, legendary former University of Oklahoma’s football head coach, and Jim West, business executive and founder of NCAA golf’s Jim West Challenge – are set to emcee, with Gene McKown stepping in as the auctioneer. The shotgun start golf begins Saturday morning (6/1) at Norman's Belmar Golf Club.

For the past 20 years, Keith’s consistent dedication to giving back to his community shined the brightest with his annual golf classics that fund The Toby Keith Foundation and OK Kids Korral. In an interview with Brandy McDonnell of The Oklahoman at last year’s event, Keith was excited about what was to come, saying "next year (2024), it'll be the 10th year for OK Kids Korral, 20th year of my foundation party. So, we're gonna celebrate a 10 and a 20, and we're gonna blow it out. It's amazing how much support we get. But it takes that kind of support to handle 150 families a year." To date, the Toby Keith & Friends Golf Classic has raised a total of nearly $18 million, with the 19th installment of the charity event having raised a record $1.8 million.

And Keith never lost sight of ensuring this safe haven, even when facing his own battle with cancer. Late last year, he told KWTV News 9’s Robin Marsh, “(OK Kids Korral is) my best gift I’ve ever given to the world. One of the first things I thought of when I got cancer was who’s gonna take care of the Korral? Who will carry that torch?”

Juliet Nees-Bright, the executive director of The Toby Keith Foundation which organizes The Toby Keith & Friend Golf Classic, has stepped up to answer the call, noting, “The first Toby Keith & Friends Golf Classic was held under a tent and people recall the ‘mud pit’ being one of the best parts. Toby and his friends came together that year to raise money for children with cancer and they did it while having fun. Now, 20 years later, we are getting ready to host our first event without Toby acting as the emcee, ribbing us to donate and entertaining us throughout the night. This year will be a balancing act as we remember him, but also honor his wishes to continue throwing one hell of a party. Let’s make Toby proud!”

At this year’s invitation-only charity event that sold out in less than a week, silent auction items include signed memorabilia from Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Jimmy Buffett, Lainey Wilson, Blake Shelton, Willie Nelson, Patrick Mahomes, Gleyber Torres and El Bombi, Joe Burrow, Scottie Scheffler, Travis Kelce, and Cal Ripken Jr., as well as a Garth Brooks personalized cowboy hat. Also up for bids will be experiences such as concert tickets from Zach Bryan and Jelly Roll, a Grand Ole Opry experience, a Texas Rangers Experience, and a Thermal Hog Hunt as well as items including a Porch Swing Bed, furniture from Ashley Furniture, jewelry, purses, and more. Silent auction bidding is now open to the public here:

Live auction offerings include trips to Portugal and Switzerland, a Taylor Swift guitar, hand-painted guitars honoring Toby, paintings by KWTV News 9’s Robin Marsh, Toby Keith & Friends 20th Year one-of-a-kind commemorative items, and items donated by Toby’s celebrity friends.

About OK Kids Korral: OK Kids Korral helps make life a little easier for children with cancer by providing a safe, convenient, and hopeful place for families to connect with each other and focus on the well-being of their child. OK Kids Korral provides daytime and overnight lodging for pediatric patients and their families. The state of the art facilities at OK Kids Korral are designed to create a relaxing haven for the entire family.