Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Golf Channel personalities Kelly Tilghman and Charlie Rymer broadcasted remote segments of their Morning Drive sports talk show live from The First Tee of the Grand Strand’s Future Generations Tournament at Caledonia Golf and Fish Club on July 30.
After their successful participation in last year’s event, the duo returned this year to offer their support and some publicity to the charity fundraiser. “This was an idea Charlie and I came up with together,” Tilghman said. “We are both South Carolina natives, and we enjoy supporting our local First Tee chapter.”
The First Tee of the Grand Strand provides golf instruction and character building, stressing nine core values to the youth in Horry and Georgetown counties, and is operated through a foundation that also oversees the highly successful First Tee of Brunswick County.
Tilghman, a North Myrtle Beach native, and Rymer, a Fort Mill native, said they both had benefitted from junior golf programs in South Carolina that helped launch their golf careers.
Tilghman related that she and Rymer are always looking for ways to make their input bigger, better and different. “We set out to hopefully attract more local sponsors this year,” Tilghman said.
“We deal with the First Tee organization on a national level on our show,” Rymer said. “But we wanted to get ourselves involved on a local level, and we love this chapter.”
The Golf Channel is the official media partner of the First Tee. “Kelly and I have made a commitment to each other to return to this tournament each year,” Rymer said.
Placing his tee in the ground carefully and looking down the fairway, tournament participant and Georgetown County School District Superintendent Dr. Randall Dozier said, “Well, I should be okay here. There are no houses or children that could be hurt by my drive.” Dozier’s teammates, Jim Ferdond, Mike Rolison and Todd Brandenburg, stood by while Dozier stuck a long, solid drive down the middle of the 11th fairway.
The entry fee for the tournament was $2,000 per four-person team. All proceeds from the Grand Strand Future Generations Tournament will fund chapter programs. This summer’s event also served as a tribute to Todd Welden, who was Caledonia’s head professional from its opening in 1994 until his death in October 2013 at the age of 50 after a battle with cancer.
Joe White, chairman of the 2014 tournament, was pleased with the support the tournament received from Caledonia Golf and Fish Club, The Golf Channel, national and local sponsors, tournament participants, and the many volunteers.
Watching 65-plus golf carts pull away from the clubhouse for the shotgun start, White remarked, “This is a wonderful day for The First Tee. It looks like everyone is having a spectacular time.”