Your Tuesday Evening Smorgasbord

It’s a busy time for yours truly.

I played two more rounds of mediocre golf this past weekend, shooting rounds of 78 and 81 on Saturday and Sunday respectively. This came on the heels of a truly horrifying round at the National GC of Canada exactly one week ago. For those that don’t know, the National is the top ranked golf course in Canada and it was the first time I had the honour of visiting.

I took plenty of photographs and will talk about my round and the course at length sometime down the road. I’m obviously way behind on my course reviews and will be writing them up in the order I played them so expect something in the early autumn on my day at the National. I’ll say this much – the course humbled me and if there are fish swimming in the ponds out there, they’ll be happily munching on my Pro V1s and Pentas for the rest of the summer.

In much happier news, my friend Jim Colton from Wegoblogger #31 was successful last Wednesday in completing his mission to walk 108 holes at Ballyneal Golf & Hunt Club in Holyoke, Colorado. Jim has done an amazing job raising money for Ben Cox, a Ballyneal caddie who is paralyzed from the waist down after suffering a fall while skiing this past winter.

Jim had many pledges that were based on the amount of holes played so he was motivated to not only reach 108 holes, but exceed it.

And exceed it he did!

He finished his day by tapping in a short putt for par on the 11th hole around 9pm, his 155th hole of the day! The extra 47 holes added about $10,000 in pledges to the pot, which now is approaching $80,000 in much needed funds for the Cox family as they attempt to pay for Ben’s medical procedures.

The support from Jim’s friends and colleagues has been incredible but equally amazing has been the support from the the whole golf community.

A few golf courses, Ballyneal included, offered free rounds of golf after the Ben Cox 108 was announced as an enticement to people to donate money to this wonderful cause. What started as a generous gesture by a few great courses has turned into one of the most awe-inspiring golf raffles I’ve ever heard of.

There are now over 70 different golf prizes available, with many of the greatest and most private golf courses in the world represented. Go to Jim’s website and look in the right sidebar under Ben Cox 108 to see if your favourite is listed. If so, you still have time to donate to this incredible cause: you get one raffle ticket for every $50.00 you donate and Jim will be conducting the final draw at Ballyneal on Saturday July 9th.

Don’t delay! Get your donation in right away and maybe you’ll be teeing it up at Pebble Beach, Merion, National Golf Links of America, Royal Dornoch, Riviera…the list goes on and on!

Congratulations again to Jim for this incredibly unselfish act of goodwill.

Lastly, I want to give a shout out to a few great blogs and websites.

Clive Barber is a golf photographer who was born in England but currently resides in Toronto. Clive was kind enough to let me utilize some of his wonderful shots for my Scarboro Golf & Country Club review and I urge you to visit his official website to see his wonderful portfolio, which includes many of the great courses in the UK, Ireland and North America.

I also want to send a shout-out to a few of my Golf Club Atlas brothers in Jeff Shelman, Tim Bert and Joe Bentham.

Jeff has done a lot of sports writing and his skill is apparent when reading Only Golf Matters. Jeff resides in Minneapolis and you should definitely check the site out for his thoughts on the world of golf, some course reviews and much more.

Tim Bert started The Kingsley Golfer as an ode to the Kingsley Club, a private ‘destination’ club near Traverse City, Michigan. I haven’t had the pleasure of playing Kingsley yet but it’s high on my list of must-plays and I hope to be able to finally take advantage of an invitation to play from another member sometime next year.

Joe Bentham also has a unique story to tell as a caddie at the Bandon Dunes Resort in Bandon, Oregon and does it with good humour at Pacduneslooper. I actually got to hang out with Joe a bit during my time at Bandon, as he was caddying for another GCA’er in my group during my disastrous first round at Pacific Dunes, where I shot a hideous 89. Joe’s currently caddying in the US Amateur Public Links Championship that’s taking place at Bandon Trails and Old Macdonald and offering daily recaps of the action at the resort.

Speaking of Bandon, I’m putting the finishing touches on my first course review at the resort – look forward to seeing my thoughts on Bandon Dunes in the next day or two.

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