15th annual golf tourney to raise money for Make-A-Wish


SPRINGFIELD -- The names and legacies of Dan Lynch, Larry Menard and Robert Podgurski live on for a good cause.

The 15th annual Lynch-Menard-Podgurski Make-A-Wish Golf Classic and Auction will be held on July 19 to continue its efforts to raise money for the Vermont chapter of the non-profit organization that grants wishes to sick children. Last year's event raised more than $12,500 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Vermont, bringing total contributions to $223,000 over the past 13 years.

Sign-ups for golf foursomes will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis starting at 1 p.m. Sunday at the American Legion Post 37 on Rockingham Street in Bellows Falls or by contacting Mike Shaughnessy, one of the directors of the local fundraising committee, at 802-380-0443. Shaughnessy said Lynch, Menard and Podgurski were members of both the American Legion and the local Polish-American Club, which are co-sponsors of the golf classic and auction.

"We've had as many as 32 teams, but recently we've been down to about 25 or 26," Shaughnessy said. "We're hoping to get those numbers back up. It makes for a better day."

Hole sponsors for the golf tournament portion of the annual event -- set for the Crown Point Country Club in Springfield -- are still being accepted. Donations for the auction will be taken until July 18. The auction will be held at the American Legion at 4 p.m. Event organizers are again expecting close to 100 items available for bidding. Tickets for the auction can be purchased at the American Legion from 5 to 8 p.m. on July 18 or shortly before the auction begins. All proceeds go to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Vermont.

The event has been so beneficial to Make-A-Wish that CEO Leslie Williams and board member Barbara Harris plan to attend.

"This group led by Mike Shaughnessy has been putting on this tournament for 15 years now and they put in a tremendous amount of effort, with lots and lots of people to make this golf tournament work, and it's all to support Make-A-Wish," she said, adding that she attended last year. "And I'd just love to be there and say thank you. It's a great community.

"I feel it's the very least I can do," she continued, "to say I appreciate everything they have done for us."

Williams told the Reformer golf tournaments and other "external events" generate 25 percent of the annual budget for Make-A-Wish. She said the golf tournament typically raises enough money to sponsor an entire wish for one child.

Domenic Poli can be reached at dpoli@reformer.com, or 802-254-2311, ext. 277. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoli_reformer.


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