By Taylor Weaver
The Highwood Golf and Country Club was a flurry of activity on Friday afternoon as they hosted the High River Flyers annual golf tournament.
The golfers lucked out with the weather conditions this year as last year’s tournament was rained out.
“We lucked out because last year we had rain and snow and all sorts of stuff so we had to cancel the tournament,” said Flyers’ president, Bill Holmes.
Holmes has been the organization’s president for the past five seasons and is also the vice principal at Ecole Okotoks Junior High School.
The day drew in 102 registered golfers which was just enough for a shot gun start.
“We’ve been doing this tournament as a fundraiser for 10 years and it’s an important piece of the year,” Holmes said. “It definitely helps to keep player’s costs down and team souvenirs.”
Every player who competed in the tournament walked away with a prize. Anything from a pack of golf balls to Flyers season tickets were up for grabs.
“This is a fundraiser for the hockey club,” said Flyer’s equipment manager, Ralph Hummel. “We also partner up with the food bank so golfers bring donations for the food bank and we’ll deliver the food to the food bank later today.”
All proceeds from the tournament go towards supporting the Flyers.
“Any funds left over after the costs of the tournament goes right back towards the team and the operation of the team,” Holmes said. “Our biggest expense is ice and the travel.”
The Flyers are anticipating a good upcoming season, which begins in the fall.
“It costs a lot of money to operate a Junior B hockey team when you factor in things such as travel costs, equipment and ice time,” Hummel said.
Flyers board of directors members including Tom Kowal, NHL referee of over 10 years, played in the tournament. It was a day of fun in the sun for all who participated.
“Sponsoring of the greens and tee boxes is our biggest contribution along with the 50/50 draw,” said Holmes. “The sponsorships are a huge contributor to the tournament as well as the team throughout the entire season and we really appreciate the help we get from the sponsors.”
Not only did golfers get to enjoy a relaxing round of play, they also enjoyed a succulent prime rib dinner in the country club’s banquet hall. Soon after dinner was over, the golfer accepted their team awards while enjoying desert.
“One way or another we try and give back to the golfers as much as we can,” Holmes said.
A silent auction was also held to help raise funds, offering bidders gift cards, NHL jerseys as well as Flyers jerseys.
The organization gave a handful of awards out to their players including most dedicated player and most valuable player to name a few.
Alexander Proncuk was this season’s M.V.P and accepted his award with a smile.
Flyers’ assistant coach and vice president, Mike Bliss organized the annual tournament and did a fine job making sure everything was in line.