By Colin McCandless for The Island Eye News
They are still tallying final numbers for the 6th Annual Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) charity golf tournament fundraiser held May 11 at the Wild Dunes Links Course, but it appears that it will nearly match if not eclipse last year’s total of $60,000, to be used toward funding prostate cancer research and helping find a cure for this dreaded disease.
The event, coordinated by the Wild Dunes Men’s Golf Association (WDMGA) PCF committee, has now raised more than $200,000 overall for the foundation through the generous donations of individuals and businesses in the Lowcountry.
There were 34 foursomes who registered for the tournament and 220 people who attended the dinner and live and silent auctions that followed the golf.
The weather was beautiful and the golf action was impressive, with the tournament victors shooting a 49 – an astounding 21 under par – and the runners-up scoring a 57. First and second place teams were awarded $400 and $300 respectively, with both groups generously donating their winnings to PCF.
Special guest Justin Moose, runner-up in the 2018 World Long Drive Championship, wowed tournament participants, powering 350-yard drives off a 4-foot high pole down the middle of the fairway, and belting regular drives of 400 yards.
For an additional donation of $100, golfers could use Moose’s drive in lieu of their own, or you could pay $200 to buy your way on to the putting green.
“He was putting on a show,” remarked WDMGA President Mike Gollobin of Moose. “It was very entertaining.” Moose split his long drive proceeds 50/50 with the PCF, raising $1,600 for the cause.
Nobody won the $20,000 hole-in-one contest, but David Jenkins came the closest to a hole-in-one when he rimmed out a shot on hole 8.
Mulligans and raffle tickets were also sold and contributed to the money raised.
The live and silent auction were a smashing success, with the most coveted item, a trip to play golf at Pebble Beach along California’s beautiful Monterrey Peninsula, selling for a whopping $8,200. Other popular live auction items included a week’s stay in a condo in Cap Cana, Dominican Republic, donated by a Wild Dunes family, and a five-night, fourround golf package at the Sunriver Resort in Bend, Ore., supplied by Jeff Minton.
There were 60 silent auction items ranging from rounds of golf and beach packages to restaurant gift certificates, wine tastings and a pub crawl.
Featured guests at the dinner and auction entailed the Prostate Cancer Foundation’s Director of Golf, Sports & Special Events Chris Conway, who provided the Pebble Beach auction package, and MUSC Prostate Cancer Specialist Dr. Michael B. Lilly, who shared updates on the current state of prostate cancer research.
Tommy Hartnett, a former three-term U.S. Congressman representing South Carolina’s 1st District who also served two terms in the South Carolina Senate and four terms in the South Carolina House of Representatives, emceed the event.
The WDMGA’s charity golf event committee included Gollobin, Minton, Hartnett, WDMGA chairman John Cipkala, PCF event treasurer Mike Driscoll, Mike Muzzy, Phil Riker, Tom Carrato and Jim Goodwin.
Gollobin gave a special acknowledgement to Wild Dunes Director of Golf and PCF committee member Jeff Minton, who donates the golf and the room at the Sweetgrass Pavilion for the fundraiser, along with providing dinner and lunches at a greatly reduced cost.
“There’s no way this event could go on without him,” stated Gollobin.
The charity tournament holds strong significance for Minton, whose father died of prostate cancer. His active involvement in the PCF fundraising cause and invaluable contributions to the event are a way for him to honor his father’s memory.
Gollobin said the committee is optimistic that the 7th Annual tournament will be even better.
“We have some great ideas looking ahead to next year to improve it,” Gollobin said.
For more information on PCF, visit PCF.org.