If you have a love for golf, veterans and service dogs, then the Cigar Club of the Palm Beaches Golf Classic is a way you can help. The club is hosting its second annual golf classic on Saturday, April 29 at the Atlantis Country Club to support the Hounds & Heroes program. The entry fee is $125 per golfer, and the four-person scramble will tee-off at 8 a.m.
Awesome Greyhound Adoption’s Hounds & Heroes program provides certified service dogs to veterans in the Palm Beach County area suffering from PTSD and various muscular disabilities. The organization works closely with the Palm Beach Kennel Club to take in retired greyhounds and then, with its all-volunteer trainers, work with the dogs and veterans to provide a completely free service.
“It takes about five months to properly train and certify the dogs, and then another month of pairing the dog and veteran into a stable situation,” explained Carolee Ellison, head trainer for the program. “We are very grateful to the Cigar Club of the Palm Beaches for its commitment and support.”
Bob Still, tournament director and Cigar Club president, explained how the relationship began. “The club wanted to have a golf tournament to benefit an important cause,” he said. “Veterans were at the top of that list, and so many of us are animal lovers, too, so partnering with Hounds & Heroes was a real blessing.”
Last year, the organization donated $6,677.80 to the Hounds & Heroes program and hopes to exceed that number with this year’s tournament. Playing spots are still available, and all levels of golfers are encouraged to participate. Included with the entry fee is a pre-golf party on April 28 at the Palm Beach Kennel Club with a silent auction and a raffle for a Carnival cruise. In addition, there will be a special CCPB/Hounds & Heroes race on the card that evening.
On Saturday, golfers will receive a bag with numerous goodies, including a Hounds & Heroes ball cap, complimentary cigars, golf balls and more. A morning donut/bagels/coffee and juice breakfast will be provided to golfers, and lunch is included following golf during the awards presentation. Also on hand will be the sale of sports memorabilia, special silent auction items and numerous raffle prizes.
During play, golfers will have chances at hole-in-one prizes as well as other contests, including a $1,000 putting contest. One player from each foursome will also have a chance to win $25,000 at one specified hole-in-one contest.
“You don’t have to be a cigar smoker to participate,” Still noted. “This event is for everyone and anyone who wants to show their appreciation for our veterans in need of service dogs.”
Hole sponsorships are available for individuals and businesses for $115. To make a donation, or to register to play, visit www.cigarclubgolf.com or call Still at (561) 670-8489 by April 19.
ABOVE: Hounds & Heroes Head Trainer Carolee Ellison with Stretch, U.S. Army veteran Roger Brown with Gunner, Tournament Director Bob Still and AGA Community Relations Manager Kerry Leach with Jackson.