February 22, 2019
Some growth problems are nice to have. The folks at Clothing Our Kids are taking a novel approach to dealing with theirs.
The origins of the popular 501(c)(3) charity began in 2009. John and Mary Rio moved to the Cape Region, where John became an assistant principal at an elementary school. John told Mary about at-risk children who needed school clothes. Mary decided to do something about it, and hit upon a golf tournament fundraiser.
The first Clothing Our Kids golf event at The Peninsula Golf & Country Club took place in 2012, and is now a significant part of the Cape Region charity calendar.
COK has raised many thousands of dollars, acquiring over 107,000 clothing items to help more than 18,000 elementary school children throughout Sussex County.
However, handling all of the events scheduled during the tournament became unwieldy. Cutting back on the moneymaking schemes was not an option, so shifting the timing of some of its major elements became the solution.
On April 4 the COK will hold its new major live and silent auction event, the Kicking It Up for Kids – Evening of Jazz and Generosity, at the clubhouse at The Peninsula, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
The $100 per person ticket includes a “darb of Hooch and Hors d’oeurvres,” bidding on live and silent auction items, and live jazz by the David Zipse Trio. With a bit of extra cash, partygoers can gain access to a VIP Speakeasy.
If you’re unable to attend, donations are still welcome. Send checks to Clothing Our Kids, 26582 John J. Williams Highway, Millsboro, DE 19966.
The Sixth Annual COK golf tournament will take place Oct. 7.
For more information, go to clothingourkids.org.
Staff changes at Delaware State Golf Association
William “Bill” Barrow, longtime executive director of the Delaware State Golf Association, is no longer with the non-profit organization.
“Bill’s a great guy,” said DSGA Board President Robert Strong. “I’ve known him a long, long time. It was just that the Board decided to move into a different direction.”
Strong said the Board wants to “grow our programs” and “enhance the experience” for Delaware golfers. That will take more money than the organization currently raises, a fact of life that Strong recognizes.
According to the Form 990s filed with the IRS, about half of DSGA’s income derives from tournament entry fees and other tournament-related sources. Most of these tournament fees are returned to the players as either cash for the professionals or gift certificates for the amateurs.
The handicap service, for which over 8,000 DSGA members pay a fee to maintain their USGA official handicap, makes up a large part of the remainder. However, the total fees paid for this handicap service are not much more than the cost of providing it.
Barrow, 61, had been with the DSGA for 17 years, originally reporting to then executive director Curt Riley, and then taking the position in 2008.
“I will miss the relationships I had with the club pros and the clubs we served. I’m thankful for the support I received from folks in and out of the state,” Barrow said. “It would be nice to stay connected to golf in some way.”
Joe Sprague, the director of regional affairs for the United States Golf Association, said, “We wish Bill well, knowing he loves golf and has worked to grow awareness in Delaware.”
The DSGA is a small organization, with only two regular employees. Two interns help out during the busy tournament season, which begins this year April 15.
“Laura [Heien] is our Director of Operations now,” Strong said. Strong has been on the board for over three years. The retired state Labor Department executive said he was stepping in as a part-time interim executive director during 2019. “At some point we will have an executive director,” he said.
If you cover golf long enough, you learn how often business alliances form, break up, and reconnect. For example, about two years ago the folks at Lamkin Grips sent me a Flat Cat Solution putter grip to test, featuring a 100 gram steel weight at the grip’s bottom end. It worked nicely and still does.
At the 2019 PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, I stopped by the Lamkin booth to see how sales had gone with that particular grip model. That is when I learned the business partnership that created the Solution is gone. In fact, the Flat Cat booth in the giant Orange County Convention Center was some distance from the Lamkin spot.
Mike Samoles handles aftermarket sales for Lamkin, and let me down gently with the news of the breakup. Then we chatted about the new Lamkin product lines, including the Sink Fit Skinny Pistol grip, which in size and weight is about as far removed from the Solution grip as could be imagined.
Lamkin’s new Fingerprint Technology is a finely detailed, indented surface pattern. It felt very light, nicely tacky, and secure. It should be easy to maintain a light grip pressure during putting. The contoured grip shape also helps keep your hands aligned properly.
The blue/green grip retails for $17.99, and also comes in a black/gray color combination.