The MS Society’s first Golf Classic at the Wolf Creek Golf Resort hosted numerous golfers who braved wind, rain, oven mitts and blurry goggles in the name of charity.
Eighty-eight golfers came out, as well as 120 diners, to raise approximately $44,000.
“It’s very humbling to be part of a town that comes out to our events,” said Bre Fitzpatrick, development co-ordinator for the MS Society
The money raised will be used by the MS Society. “It’s twofold: we have a mission to find a cure for MS … and enhance the lives of those living with MS,” said Fitzpatrick.
This was the MS Society’s 13th golf tournament but their first golf classic. The 12 previous years featured a 100 Holes of Golf tournament.
“It (the change in tournaments) was very well received. I think we had three golfers out of our evaluations who said 100 holes sounds fun,” said Fitzpatrick.
The society received around 60 evaluations of the tournament.
Last year the MS Society golf tournament hosted 75 golfers. Fitzpatrick encountered golfers who were relieved it was a traditional tournament and entered on that factor.
The tournament also featured a Gong Show. On the driving range golfers had to chip their ball and hit a gong. Winner Roger Lindstrand received a camera set.
There was also an MS symptom hole. Golfers had to don oven mitts to represent the loss of feeling MS sufferers experience as well as blurry goggles to mirror the vision impairments.
Ellen Geddes, MS Society events coordinator, explained that at a different MS tournament one golfer had opted out of the symptoms saying, “I don’t feel like it.” An MS sufferer who was volunteering at the hole said, “I wish I could do that. I wish I could wake up and say I don’t feel like having my symptoms today.”
However, the tournament was for charity and fun and using the ‘symptoms’ wasn’t mandatory.
Fitzpatrick said only one team quit golfing because of the weather.
“There was driving wind and rain. It turned nasty,” said Geddes.
According to Fitzpatrick the team quit only because “they had a very novice golfer.” Fitzpatrick said every other team made an effort to finish the challenging course despite the weather.