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Sports legends signed up for 50+ Golf Classic

The 50+ Club’s annual golf classic is getting some added star power to help it in its quest to build up its revenue from community supporters.

Joining the late August game will be Edmonton Eskimo Hall of Famer Tom Wilkinson and Edmonton Oilers alumnus Al Hamilton.

“It adds a different kind of flavour to the tournament,” exclaimed club vice-president and tournament chair Gareth Jones.

Jones said he’s thrilled to have such well-known guests at the game and hopes the extra attention will help the organization bridge a major funding gap that recently happened as a side-effect of the redevelopment of the Grandin mall site.

“This is the third year, but this year it’s more important for it to be successful. We lost $25,000 in revenue because the (Grandin mall) bingo closed down,” he explained.

“It’s hitting us quite hard, really,” he said.

“When we started, (the golf tournament) wasn’t critical from a fundraising point of view. It was important because then we could have expanded some of the programs and done some other things. Now… it’s more essential for this to be successful.”

The 50+ Club is the place for seniors in this community. With hundreds of members, it offers an incredible variety of programs and services – everything from exercise and social activities, to arts and crafts, to special events, to transportation assistance, to Meals on Wheels, and much, much more.

“It’s a very, very active club. There’s so much going on here, really,” Jones said.

He added that one of the most important things that the club does is to improve quality of life and counter seniors’ isolation – a growing problem in the city.

The golf classic usually brings in $12,000 to $15,000 in extra revenue for the club. There are currently about 70 players signed up to play, but the course can handle up to 144.

Along with the special guests, organizers have set up some enticing prizes to encourage people to sign up. There are three hole-in-one gifts including a Caribbean cruise (sponsored by Farlie Travel), $5,000 (sponsored by Investors Group) and $10,000 (jointly sponsored by Re/Max and RBC Mortgage)

The club is also going to auction of a round of fourball (a two-on-two golf match) with Hamilton and another round with Wilkinson. Details on those events are still being worked out.

Jones added that the community has always been very supportive. He’s counting on that to continue.

“We need to get a high number of players out there to be able to make it really worthwhile. Each dollar we can make, it’s all spent on these services and programs.”

He remarked that the shortfall hasn’t yet made an impact but it easily could if the loss isn’t recovered somewhere.

“If we’re unable to match the revenue that we need, obviously we’ll have to cut back on some things. That’s what I’m hoping we can avoid if we can.

“Not in dire straits just yet, but if this shortfall isn’t met over the next few months, then the organization will have to take a good close look at the books to see where things can be tightened up or cut off.”

Preview

The St. Albert 50+ Club Third Annual Dinosaur Golf Classic
The Ranch Golf and Country Club
Wednesday, Aug. 27
Registration at 7 a.m.
Shotgun start at 8 a.m.
Texas scramble tournament format
Participants get a hot breakfast and a steak barbecue, plus fabulous prizes for team and individual achievements and participation
Fee: $150 per player. Register as an individual or in teams of four
Registration forms are available at the club, 7 Taché Street
or contact tournament chair Gareth Jones at 780-975-9893 or via email at garethj@telus.net.
Visit www.stalbert50plus.com for more information.

Scott Hayes: Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.