Today is Saturday, November 22, 2014

Support makes tourneys more than golf games

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By JOHN B. BRYAN

We all know the economy is tough and charities are feeling the pinch across the nation.

With June being the big “golf tournament” month in Wilson County, you can soon find out what kind of hearts people have in our community by seeing the participation level in these tournaments.

The Lebanon/Wilson County Chamber of Commerce tournament was held a couple of Thursdays ago at Pine Creek Golf Course in Gladeville. The event, named for the late Dr. Cary Harbrecht, was a smashing success with sponsors and players participating in both morning and afternoon sessions.

Just this past Friday the THW Insurance/Prospect, Inc. Pro-Am event was held at Lebanon Golf and Country Club and it too proved to be another great event for a great charitable cause. The Prospect tourney, which may be the oldest, longest running charitable event format, is a little different from regular scrambles where Tennessee PGA professionals compete playing their own ball while five teammates play a best ball scramble.

Charles Davis, a former NBA player and Vanderbilt alumnus, played with a local group of golfers and his team won the Championship Flight. Ted Aulds, who helped put the team together, said Davis was steady, but their secret weapon was Jennifer Jackson. Their team fired a 16 under score of 56 on the day.

This year marked the fourth year of the “Tee it Up for Sean” golf event held at Five Oaks Golf and Country Club. This tournament never ceases to amaze me. The event is held each year in memory of Sean Putman, the late son of my dear friends Troy and Beth Putman. Sean died four years ago on Aug. 20. He had a terrible cancer called Ewing’s Sarcoma and battled it since he was a toddler.

Troy and Beth head up a team of close friends and relatives who work together to make this tournament happen. The proceeds fund four scholarships each year to Cumberland University, and this year the scholarship fund first recipient graduated from the Nursing School at Cumberland.

Despite taking place in the midst of the worse economic conditions this country has seen since the Great Depression, this tournament recorded a full field of 36 teams, the most to play in its brief four-year history.

I am proud to live in a community with such giving hearts. On behalf of these fine organizations, I personally want to thank all the sponsors, volunteers and players who make these tournaments the great events they are. Without this support, it would be just another golf game.

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