Golfers tee up for SVC

32 teams compete in the eighth annual Whidbey Island/Skagit Valley College Golf Classic.

“The sun came out Friday for the eighth annual Whidbey Island/Skagit Valley College Golf Classic, a fund-raiser for the Skagit Valley College Foundation.It was a record registration this year, with 124 golfers making up 32 teams. The tournament was open to both men and women.Golfers and volunteers gathered for a barbeque and registration in the late morning. Items to be auctioned during dinner were displayed, including a custom rowing dory, hand-crafted and donated by the SVC Marine Maintenance Technology Department.At 1 p.m., the golfers gathered for a shotgun start. Teams rushed to get to their starting hole. Two teams, running late, nearly collided trying to get to get started. The tournament was scored using a scramble method, meaning the collective score of the team was used. Two drives from each player had to be counted, but otherwise teams could choose the best-scoring drives and putts to use.Golfers on the course appeared to enjoy themselves. The tone of the event was to play for fun. The competition wasn’t intense. It was golfing for a good cause.Each hole had a sponsor – for a donation to the foundation of $300 – and held a contest or supplied sodas for the golfers. Contests included things such as longest drive for men and women; hitting the green from the tee to win a sleeve of golf balls; and a men’s accuracy driving contest for a steak dinner.The most action was found on the 18th hole, where experienced golfer Tim Wyer would tee off for a $5 donation to the foundation. Some teams were glad to use Wyer’s drive instead of their own, without argument. Some teams didn’t feel they needed the help. Wyer waited until the golfers teed off and then offered to drive one for them.If you like my drive better, give (the foundation) $5, and you can use my drive, he said.After seeing Wyer’s distance, the team would pay the money.One player who came through challenged Wyer to a wager.If I can drive farther than you, he said, you pay the money. If you drive farther than me, I’ll pay the money.Wyer agreed and the man paid the money.Golfers started trickling in from the course at around 5:30 p.m., many of them tired and sunburned, but all of them said they had a good time.There were two divisions – one for mixed teams and one open division.Puget Sound Energy won the mixed team division with a score of 66.In the open division, Swinomish Casino and Bingo won with 59. Whidbey Island Bank took second with 60, and another two teams of Whidbey Island Bank tied for third with Island Disposal at scores of 61.Including money from the live auction, the Skagit Valley College Foundation raised $20,000 from the event. The foundation has raised $128,000 at the Oak Harbor golf event over the last eight years.”