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June 2018

Young Player Inspires Productive Fundraiser

By Steve Donahue

The children of Winged Foot Golf Club’s members weren’t kidding last July 26 when it came to supporting a charity.

The Mamaroneck, New York, club’s junior golf committee, club professionals and greens staff held “Putt for Pink”— a three-hole putting challenge on their large practice green. The idea came from junior member Jack Greco. His mother, Tara, shared the idea with Winged Foot staff. Her children wanted to participate in Play for P.I.N.K., a Winged Foot fundraiser that has raised money for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation for 25 years.

 “Jack is a wonderful kid,” says Alicia Dobos, Winged Foot’s director of instruction. “He wondered how Winged Foot’s juniors could (help)… Once Tara mentioned it to me we got the ball rolling. In one July afternoon we created this fun, great event. All the kids participated and it was phenomenal.”

Seventy juniors competed on the miniature golf-like setup in three age groups (5-7, 8-11 and 12 and up). Each player had three putts per hole, so there were nine holes overall. Competitors all wore pink, the same color adorning the lemonade, cupcakes and cookies that were served.

“Of course, the holes for the 5- to 7-year-olds were a little shorter, easier,” Dobos says. “We put some rings around those holes and they’d have to hit the ball inside the ring to get a point. The more advanced players had longer distances, more-creative holes.”

The top three finishers in each age group earned prizes. Two playoffs (8-11 and 12 and up) took place, and $1,645 was raised for the Breast Cancer Research Fund.
More than 100 parents and members attended the festivities.

“The camaraderie was great, it was all about playing for P.I.N.K.,” says Dobos.

Play for P.I.N.K. donated towels and prizes to give out to the young players. “It didn’t cost us anything,” Dobos says. “Everybody got something. It started a little slow and I didn’t expect it to grow like it did. I was originally expecting 20 people. Everybody was very supportive of the idea behind it, but it wasn’t about winning a prize. It was more about the participation. It’s an idea created by a kid and we all got involved 100 percent.” 

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