Community

Golfing for a cause

From left: Fernie Golf and Country Club golf professional Michael Van Horne, ALS Society of B.C. Executive Director Wendy Toyer, Fernie ALS patient Helen Dodgson and Christine Szots. - N. Obre
From left: Fernie Golf and Country Club golf professional Michael Van Horne, ALS Society of B.C. Executive Director Wendy Toyer, Fernie ALS patient Helen Dodgson and Christine Szots.
— image credit: N. Obre

During the month of June, golf professionals all over B.C. golfed from sunrise to sunset to support those living with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Fernie Golf and Country Club's Michael Van Horne joined in on the cause, golfing 156 holes of golf on June 30.

“When I came [to Fernie] there was the Emily Brydon Foundation, there was the Rotary Golf Tournament, all benefiting the community, but not something specific,” explained Van Horne. “I just thought, I can do it, it's a day off where I get to go play golf. It's worth it, and even though we're not raising millions of dollars here, it's a collective goal, so every little bit we can get is great.”

Van Horne started the day at 5 a.m. and managed to get five rounds of golf in by 11 a.m. After taking a lunch break with Helen Dodgson, a Fernie local with ALS, he was back at it. On his first and best round of the day, using a glow in the dark ball, Van Horne golfed a 66.

The Fernie Golf and Country Club is just one of 37 courses across the province who participate in the PGA of B.C. Golf-a-thon for ALS.

“It's extraordinary because it's 100 per cent volunteer based,” commented Wendy Toyer, executive director of the ALS Society of B.C. “This gentleman and other colleagues who go out and do the golf-a-thon and the communities that raise the money allows us to put that money directly into the cause.”

She went on to say, “It helps create awareness in the community and the spin off of that is absolutely extraordinary. It is such a unique event. These guys are golfing at the speed of light for the entire day, it really is a spectacle that's unique to the PGA Golf-a-thon for ALS, there's nothing else quite like it.”

All of the money raised goes towards equipment, transportation and support programs for ALS patients.

 

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