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Virtual Olds Rotary golf tourney successful

Another virtual Rotary Club fundraiser might be held this fall

OLDS — The first ever virtual Rotary Club of Olds golf tournament was a great success, says Vicky Barzey, the club’s community public image chair says.

Due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, the club’s annual fundraising tournament, normally held around the third week in June at the Olds Golf Club, was held virtually.

From June 16 to July 6, participants were invited to register on the Rotary Club website or the club’s Facebook page. They could golf at any course in Alberta they wished and play nine or 18 holes.

Because of all those variables, a tournament champion wasn’t named. Instead, participants turned in their cards and were entered in several draws, held July 9 during a Rotary Club event at the Olds College wetlands.

Barzey says the tournament raised more than $6,000. All funds raised go toward the new Rotary Athletic Park. A few years ago, the club agreed to raise $500,000 for the park in return for naming rights.

“I thought it went really, really well. We ended up with 65 players (on) courses all over Alberta, really,” she said during an interview.

“We were really happy with the turnout. First time around, right? You never know how it’s going to go. And it came together so quickly.”

Barzey said it’s tough to compare entries to this tournament and the amount of money raised to previous Rotary Club of Olds golf tournaments because this one is so different.

However, she thinks it was a real success and might be an option for next year.

“The amount of hours that were put in on it, compared with some of our other fundraisers, it is a very viable option,” she said.

“Will we want to get back on the course as a Rotary Club of Olds golf tournament? Absolutely we would. But I really think this is a very, very good alternative.”

In fact, Barzey thinks a virtual event of some kind may be held this fall as well.

“I think we’ll probably be putting our thinking caps on over the next little bit and coming up with something,” she said.

“It could be virtual or it could be an outdoor function, but I’m sure that’s going to be in discussion (during) our club meetings over the next few weeks.”

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