Friday, August 27, 2010

Wards hosting golf tournament to help fight Lupus

The disease Lupus first affected me and my family when my mom was diagnosed with it in 1968. She was told she might live three more years - tops.

With improving research with medication, she beat those odds and lived another 23 years before the side affects of treating the disease took their toll on her body and she passed in 1994.

I was saddened to hear recently that Jackie Ward, mom of former area athletes Jeremy Ward (RMHS baseball, Wake Forest/Long Beach State, MLB signee) and Travis Ward (NN baseball, Nash Co. Babe Ruth baseball coach), had been diagnosed with the disease as well.

In tribute to her and the millions who suffer from the still very obscure disease. the Wards' family business, Rocky Mount Recyclers, is hosting a golf tournament this fall to help raise funds to help fight this disease.

It will be hosting the 1st Annual Reaching for the Green Golf Tournament on Oct. 23. It will be held at Rocky Mount's Donald Ross-designed Benvenue Country Club and will benefit the Piedmont Chapter of the Lupus Foundation.

Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that is often debilitating and can affect any part of the body. This disease attacks the immune system and causes the body to produce autoantibodies that attack and destroy healthy tissue versus producing antibodies that protect the body from viruses, bacteria and germs.

One out of 185 Americans is affected by Lupus, mostly women between the ages of 15-44. More than 16,000 new cases of Lupus are reported annually across the country.

But, there are advances being made every day in the diagnosis and treatment of this disease.

This year brings the possible approval of the first FDA-approved drug for Lupus in more than 51 years. The tournament's goal is that this golf event will only be the beginning in our fight to help find a cure for this disease.

There are a limited number of player reservations and sponsorship packages. Listed below are the ways you can help in this fight against Lupus:

• Contributing a financial gift to the Lupus Foundation of America
• Donating a raffle prize
• Donating items for our golfer goody bags

The Wards wish to thank you for your consideration and support of the Lupus Foundation of America.

Sponsorship Packages:

Platinum (1 sponsor) $5,000

• 2 teams of 4 players
• Your company logo and name on tournament t-shirt and event banner
• Exclusive sponsorship of putting green with a 4’x8’ sign
• Exclusive hole sponsorship (hole of choice)
• Opportunity to display corporate banner on site

Gold (1 sponsor) $3,000

• 1 team of 4 players
• Your company logo and name on tournament t-shirt and event banner
• Exclusive hole sponsorship (hole of choice other than one chosen by Platinum sponsor)
• Exclusive sponsorship of driving range with a 4’ x 8’ sign

Silver (3 sponsors) $2,000

• 1 team of 4 players
• Your company logo and name on tournament t-shirt and event banner
• 2 Non-exclusive hole sponsorships

Bronze (unlimited) $750

• 2 player reservations
• Your company name on t-shirt and event banner
• Non-exclusive hole sponsorship

Additional Opportunities:

Individual Player - $125
Foursome - $475
Hole sponsorships (non-exclusive) - $125
Donation of prizes for raffle
Mulligans, red tee busters, etc. sold day of tournament

Tournament Highlights:

All players will receive:

• A fried chicken and barbeque lunch
• A tournament t-shirt
• Beverages during play and awards ceremony
• A goody bag
• Each player will be entered into a raffle for various prizes

There will be prizes awarded for 1st and 2nd place as well as contests for closest to the pin and longest drive. A putting contest will also be held prior to the tournament.

Registration - 11:00 am
Lunch - 11:30 am
Putting contest - 12:15 pm
Shotgun start - 1:00 pm