By: Carol Beck-Round | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: July 2014
Whether it’s “V” for victory or “V” for Volunteers for Youth, both of these golfers hope to survive 100 holes on July 22 for the 10th annual Volunteers for Youth Smokin’ Hot 100 Golf Marathon. Pictured: Mendy Stone, executive director for Volunteers for Youth, and Judi Mrasek, who has been the top fundraiser for the event over the past eight years.
You don’t have to be a Jack Nicklaus, an Arnold Palmer or even a Phil Mickelson to participate in the 10th annual ‘Smokin’ Hot 100 Golf Marathon,’ a fundraiser for the Rogers County Volunteers for Youth program. However, you must want to have fun while raising some serious bucks for the nonprofit organization. This year’s marathon is set for July 22 at Heritage Hills Golf Course in Claremore.
The marathon is a way for golfers, both duffer and low handicapper alike, to rally support while doing something they really enjoy – playing golf. So, how do you play 100 holes of golf in one day? The golf rules are modified a bit to allow a golfer to finish 100 holes by mid-afternoon, if you get a good early start.
Speaking of early starts, you get a free breakfast at sunup followed by the shotgun start, usually around 6:30 a.m., according to Executive Director Mendy Stone. “That way we can beat the heat,” she says.
What’s so fun about playing golf in July? Well, for starters, you get the golf course to yourself with approximately 18 other participants who have the satisfaction of helping Rogers County Volunteers for Youth in a big way.
According to Mendy, “One hundred holes of golf in a day is very doable.” Many golfers in past marathons have played more than that. “In fact,” she adds, “our youngest golfer last year, Andrew Vanaman – who was 13 at the time – had to be forced to quit.”
To speed up the play, golfers have their own cart, play at their own speed and may request a cart driver. Golfers may also hit multiple balls from tee boxes, and each ball counts as one hole played. In addition, says Mendy, “We play ‘ready golf’ with a maximum field of 18 golfers.”
You also don’t have to look for lost balls, OBs, etc. Just drop another ball and keep hitting – balls are provided. Whenever your score on a hole reaches triple bogey, pick up, score the hole as completed, and move on to the next hole. Golfers may also play any hole, or series of holes, in any order as many times as they want. Also, on the green, any putt inside the leather is a “gimmee.”
“We also add in Longest Drive, Closest-to-Pin and Most Accurate Drive contests,” she adds.
So, how can you get involved? Each golf participant agrees to sponsor him or herself for at least $1 per hole. “Your $100 donation is payable in advance and is tax deductible,” says Mendy. Then, you must solicit sponsorships from business associates, family members and friends with an achievable goal of raising an additional $19 per hole—that amounts to $2,000 per golfer.
“A one-time pledge or a per-hole pledge is completely acceptable,” says Mendy, “and most of those who are asked to help say, ‘yes.’”
For the past eight years, Judi Mrasek has been declared the marathon winner by raising the most money. “Last year, Judi raised more than $10,000,” Mendy says. “Last year, Judi won a mobile hot spot and the monthly fee for a year for being the top fundraiser.”
In addition to a free breakfast, the $100 self pledge gets you a free lunch and continuous refreshments, plenty of golf balls to smack around and the opportunity to earn some great prizes. “One should not even think of this event as a golf tournament,” says Mendy. “Golf is just the vehicle that allows us to bring together folks with a heart for the work we’re doing. Money is raised because golfers and non-golfers alike can participate by self-sponsoring, seeking matching pledges and playing lots of golf.”
All proceeds from this event go to Volunteers for Youth programs. To enter the marathon or sponsor someone else, email eat0@eau0eav0eaw0 or call 918-343-2530. Volunteers for Youth is supported by the Rogers County United Way.
For more information, contact
After 30 years in public school education, Carol Round retired and moved from Grand Lake to Claremore, Oklahoma in 2005, where she writes a weekly faith-based column which runs in 14 Oklahoma newspapers as well as several national and international publications. Three volumes of her columns have been compiled into collections: A Matter of Faith, Faith Matters and by FAITH alone. She has also written Journaling with Jesus: How to Draw Closer to God and a companion workbook, The 40-Day Challenge. This past year she has written three children’s books, a series called Nana’s 3 Jars, to teach children about the value of giving, saving and spending money. All of Carol’s books are available through Amazon. In addition to writing her weekly column, authoring books and speaking to women’s groups, she writes for Value News. She also blogs regularly at www.carolaround.com. When she is not writing or speaking, she loves spending time with her three grandchildren, working in her flowerbeds, shooting photos, volunteering at her church or going on mission trips overseas, and hiking. She is also an avid reader and loves working crosswords and trying to solve Sudoku puzzles.
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