The first ever golf tournament on August 26th to support the Race for Matt & Grace fundraising group raised over $16,000 for FARA. But more impressive, we were able to fill the course with 34 foursomes making the long journey from RI to CT! (for those outside New England – yes, we are spoiled in RI and don’t drive anywhere outside a 15 minute radius… this is a big deal)
The Connecticut National Golf Club was ready for our FA community. Tucked away on a rural road in Putnam, CT, the course boasted challenging fairways, well-maintained greens, and came with perfect 70 degree late-August weather; a golfer’s dream day! Me and Friedreich decided to try our luck hacking away for 18 – why not?! Joined by my brothers and best friend, our foursome joined the 33 others in a scramble-format tournament, established to raise funds for FA research and find the best golfers in the bunch. I started golfing at a young age, but have become quite terrible from lack of practice and FA. Neither mattered on the 26th. We had a blast playing the course and enjoyed the “extra-curricular” activities at various holes. From putting tournament, to open grill, to hole-in-one challenges, to pre-tee-off drinks (definitely helped my nerves), to raffles, to free food/drink at multiple holes, to silent auctions, … there was never a dull-moment all day (and I never went hungry!). All the add-ons made the registration fee a bargain and helped generate more donations to FARA in fun ways. Despite many divots, missed fairways and duffed shots, I laughed and smiled the entire day – great company at great events for a great cause will always do that!
A huge thank-you to the tournament organizers, all the volunteers that made each hole extra-special, and the Connecticut National Golf Club for hosting us. We are already planning the tournament for 2018 and I can’t wait to see this event grow in the future. Won’t it be embarrassing next year when a guy with FA gets a hole-in-one over everyone else? (I can dream)
As long as the golf tournament drove us (yes, pun intended), we have much further to go for FARA with the main event happening soon. The 8th annual Race for Matt & Grace will be held in RI on September 23rd! Visit the official race site at: http://cureFA.org/RFMG
From Derrick Gelsomino:
As a member of the Rhode Island FARA team it has been an interest to find another way to raise funds and gather our community of supporters together. Having many events throughout the year, including our Annual Race for Matt & Grace in September, it was a vision to host a golf tournament. Sure enough on August 26, Connecticut National Golf Club hosted our Inaugural event. The event brought together some familiar and some new faces to our community. Seeing the faces of 148 golfers and 30 volunteers to assist at the event, today the least, it was an amazing turnout.
The event kicked off at noon with a lunch choice of a sausage and peppers or chicken sandwich. On the practice putting green, our local Chili’s sponsored our team putting contest, where teams of two would compete on a 4-hole course. Upon completion, the participants gathered for the rules and regulations of scramble format tournament.
When the clock struck 1:00 PM, the golfers were sent off to their assigned holes. Throughout the tournament we had refreshment holes, a hole in one competition, longest drive, closest to the pin and raffle prize holes.
From the raffles, entries and donations, we were able to exceed our goal and fundraise $16,000 for this event. Thank you all for your time, dedication and support.