It was difficult to pinpoint the highlight of the 19th Annual Country Meadows Charity Golf Classic last Friday at the course on No. 6 Road.
It could easily have been the impressive $104,000 that the 170-strong Country Meadows Senior Men’s Golf Club has already raised this month for the B.C. Prostate Cancer Research Centre.
Or it could have been the first ever hole-in-one in the tournament’s history, netting the acer, Vinnie Nicola, a $10,000 prize from the hole sponsors, Aviva Insurance.
No matter which one was the talking point at the 19th hole, it’s undoubted that the event — which last week saw 28, five-person teams (each team had at least one woman) compete — continues to shine, with more than $1.25 million raised in its lifetime for prostate cancer research equipment.
“It was quite an occasion; we were hoping someone would win (the hole-in-one prize) one of these days,” said Lorne Carney, the club’s fundraising manager, of Nicola’s ace on the 165-yard first hole.
“Not known to us his foresome, (Nicola) decided to split the money if anyone won it.”
But, after being congratulated by the club’s charity chairman, Doug Parmenter, Nicola announced that he and his buddies were donating $2,000 back to the charity.
Most of the $1.25 million raised over the years – 15 of the 19 tournaments have supported prostate cancer research – has been in the “last seven or eight years,” added Carney, “that’s when we really started to ramp it up.
“The money goes directly equipment at centre for research into prostate cancer, none of it goes to administration.”
Carney said they chose prostate cancer research as one of our members, Harold Mahood, sponsored a Dr. Marianne Sadar, now head of the B.C. Prostate Research Centre, through her education and it “led from there.”
“It made sense to support a cause which affected men,” said Carney.
The club actively fundraises all year, but focuses September on helping prostate cancer research.
It’s estimated 21,000 Canadian men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year, with 4,000 not seeing out the year.