Golf Tournament To Raise Money For Food Bank's New Building

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On Saturday, April 29 golfers will be teeing off for prizes at the fifth annual Tee Off for Hunger tournament to benefit the Rim Country's St. Vincent de Paul Food Bank.

A hole-in-one at hole number eight on the green at Payson Golf Course earns the golfer a sporty Chrysler 300.

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Volunteer Victoria E. Teeples stocks food on the shelves of the St. Vincent de Paul Food Bank. Right now the new food bank building is filled with cartons of food. The floor of the doublewide mobile office is reinforced to withstand the weight of the cases an 18-wheeler recently dropped off.

"A hole eight is one of the harder par threes," said John Young, chairman of the 2006 tournament.

"I don't think it's as hard as hole #2," said volunteer Wayne Parent. "Distance will usually tell."

A hole-in-one on hole #2 puts $10,000 in the golfer's bank account.

Other prizes include a set of Ping golf clubs, a Bose home audio system and a variety of raffles.

The event is about having fun while raising money for the food bank.

"Because of (community) generosity in 2005, the food bank was able to give out 4,040 boxes of food valued at $396,704 to 13,443 people and assisted with financial aid of $44,901.07," said Richard Krauss, co-president of the St. Vincent de Paul Conference and Food Bank.

A donation of $70 per person ($45 for Payson Golf Course members) includes the green fee, cart and buffet awards dinner.

Foursomes can be made upon request, otherwise foursomes will be made up of A, B, C and D groups based on submitted handicaps.

"Scramble" in golf lingo, means each team tees off at a different hole at the same time.

"Then they'll pick the best drive and hit the ball from where that ball landed. Then the next shot will come from the best ball hit," Young said.

The 2005 Scramble raised approximately $9,000, according to Krauss.

Two tournament times, (9 a.m. and 1 p.m.) will allow 224 teams to play, more than twice the capacity of last year's single morning event.

"Our reach is going to be a lot deeper this year," said Young. They will be contacting every St. Vincent de Paul conference in the state and all the Knights of Columbus chapters and many premiere Valley golf courses.

"Hopefully, people will want to come up and see or stay in the Rim Country for our tournament because it is a beautiful area to play golf in," said Parent.

Young is looking for businesses in town to sponsor holes.

For $150 they get their name and phone number on a two-foot golf ball sign at one of the tees.

"If we raised enough to pay off our new building (around a $60,000 balance on a $100,000 loan), we'd all be kneeling in church for the next six months, believe me," Young said.

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