Golf means different things to different people, but one thing is certain ... at Birch Ridge Golf Course, golf often means charity. Just check out the lineup of tournaments each year, and see how many help raise funds for worthwhile causes.
One such tournament that is near and dear to many of us was our Second Annual Rally for the Cure Tournament held on June 10. The final figures are in. Drum roll, please ... after all expenses are paid, we were able to send a check for $6,000 to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.
In the latest Golf for Women Magazine, it was reported that since 1996, the Rally Program worldwide has generated over $23 million to bring about breast cancer awareness and help to eradicate this life threatening disease. How proud we all should feel as a golfing community to be part of such a wonderful program and for being able to put together an event like this on the local level with such success.
A heartfelt thank you again to all our Rally hole sponsors (ClerkWorks Alaska, Danlin Construction, First National Bank Alaska, Freedom Realty, Laughing Lab Pub, Parker Horn Company, Soldotna Pharmacy, Southcentral Title, Dave and Jane Stein and We B Stampin'). So many others helped to make the Rally a success those who made donations for door prizes and the silent auction, our many volunteers and especially the 71 participants who not only helped raise funds by golfing, but who made it a very fun tournament.
A special thanks to the Birch Ridge Golf Course owners and crew for making the Rally a special event as they do for all of the tournaments.
Another tournament for charity is the upcoming Phil Turkington Golf Classic, sponsored by the Soldotna Elks Lodge No. 2706 to be held on August 4. Phil was a charter member of the Soldotna Elks and a generous supporter of the Elks as well as the Birch Ridge Golf Course.
The Soldotna Elks contribute to our local youth in so many ways by donating to scholarships, Boy Scouts, Young Marines, the Hoop Shoot Program and Skateboard Park to name just a few. In Phil's memory, why not help the Elks provide much needed assistance to local youth activities and at the same time help yourself to a great day of golf? Sign up before the field is full and no later than August 1. The entry fee is $60 if received by July 31 and includes green fee and steak feed. For more information about the tournament or the Calcutta the night before, call the Elks Lodge at 262-2706.
The Grainge Memorial Senior Golf Tournament final day of play on Friday provided 34 seniors with a generous amount of sunshine, great food and wonderful company. Thank you to the hole sponsors (Agrium, Mike Chenault, ClerkWorks Alaska, Danlin Construction, Freedom Realty, Parker Horn Company, Soldotna Pharmacy and Wells Fargo Bank) and to the Birch Ridge Golf Association for sponsoring this popular tournament.
The second junior golf clinic for the season ended last Thursday and was considered another huge success according to golf pros Tom Walsh and Bill Engberg. The 16 young golfers were eager to learn and will no doubt become great golfers in the future, thanks in part to Birch Ridge Golf Association's generous support of the junior golf program.
The Wednesday Night Men's League on July 18 had six golfers. Tim Bowser posted the low net score of 27. Gary Effenbeck, Roy Bird and Rick Kennedy made up the winning team, scoring a net 24. Gary Davis had the longest drive and was closest to the hole on No. 8. Hole No. 6 is carried over.
Eleven seniors played Monday morning. Steve Hammarstrom, with a 28, had the low net score. George McDowell was closest to the hole on No. 6 and made the longest putt. Closest to the hole on No. 8 was Gary Effenbeck.
The Tuesday Morning Ladies League decided Mother Nature was just a little too generous with the rain and postponed play until next week, the last Tuesday of the month, and that means a potluck in addition to the normal fun and games. If you've wanted to join this great group of ladies, why not come out next Tuesday?
And of course that very charitable couple, John and Jane Tongen, again generously devoted themselves to making the Tuesday Night Couples League a fun place to be. The game was a simple one with two-person (one couple) teams each playing their own game. Using the best five net scores from the man and the best four net scores from the woman, we added them together to come up with our team score.
The lady luck of golf was once again feeling charitable toward the Keatings as we took first place among the six couples who decided that a little rain wouldn't stop us from having a good time. Dan and Linda Murphy came in second, with third place going to Pat and Myrna Cowan. New couples are always welcome, just bring your handicap (trust me, it helps) and come join the fun.
The course is looking good, the greens are in good shape, the season is short and everyone needs a break from work and fishing, so why not call the pro shop (262-5270) and book your tee time. Whether you join one of our great leagues, take a lesson from one of our knowledgeable pros or just come out to play with a couple of friends or family, no matter what your level of play, golfing at Birch Ridge will certainly add to your sense of well being.
SHARON'S THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: "I'm sure that one of the reasons my golf game seems to be improving is because of all of the advice and golf tips my husband Dave continues to contribute. One such contribution was when he pointed out that I was standing way too close to the ball after I hit it."
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