WHOOPS AND hollers resounded at Westfield Franklin Park mall as the Arthur Hills/Steve Forrest and Associates team won the corporate challenge of the 19th annual "Practically a Golf Tournament" Friday night. The four earned bragging rights and a six-foot trophy.
They competed against six other corporate finalist teams, and topped the leader board again - they also won in 1996 - at the fund-raiser benefiting the Epilepsy Center. The generous winners, Ken Gibson, Joel "Threewiggle'' Hornickel, Shawn Smith, and John "Laser'' Flynn, all of Toledo, donated their $400 bounty back to the organization.
The estimated net from what is the center's biggest fund-raiser is about $15.000.
The event had returned to Westfield Franklin Park Mall for its four-day fun-filled event. "We're excited to get back there,'' said chairman Megan Seder. "The traffic alone, we should see 120,000 people." That exposure, which heightens awareness of the Epilepsy Center, is priceless, Ms. Seder said.
A celebrity/media competition kicked off the event Thursday with a shotgun start. A Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority team headed by general manager James Gee won first place. Also seen at the event were Rob Ludeman, Toledo City Council president; Keith Burwell, president of Toledo Community Foundation, and Bill Kitson, president and chief executive of United Way of Greater Toledo.
The corporate battle, high school competition, Family Fun Day, and plenty of open play rounded out the event. A St. Ursula Academy team won the high school challenge.
Each hole was unique, interesting, and challenging, even for experienced golfers. One hole featured a row of wooden cows complete with pink udders. Another green boasted the University of Toledo tower and football field. One green was blue - a water scene with a lighthouse and sailboat. There also was a replica of the Willis B. Boyer museum ship.
The nine-hole mini-green course started in the Macy's wing of the mall and ended up in the new wing at the bonus 10th hole. For $1, the 10th hole gave serious duffers and beginning putters a chance to make a hole-in-one and receive a gift certificate for nine holes at Fallen Timbers Fairways. Players also were entered in nightly drawings for gift packs from the Mud Hens, Chick-Fil-A, the accessories boutique Jule, and others.
Yesterday families were invited to spend quality time on the greens in the company of one of Toledo's feathered friends, Muddonna from the Mud Hens, plus the Epilepsy Center's mascot, Trigger, a seizure response dog.
- Julie Njaim
COLD WINTER temperatures were replaced with a warm summer atmosphere at the Toledo Club Saturday evening during the annual "Summer Fling."
About 350 members and guests gathered for the 17th annual event to chase away the winter blues with food, friends, and fun, said Mike Searle, the club's general manager.
After they walked into the club, guests were greeted by the sight of brightly colored umbrellas opened above two thatched huts. They provided shade for lemon-yellow sangria doled out from large pitchers, and draft beer.
Faux palm trees completed the tropical scene that was dotted with partiers wearing Hawaiian shirts, strapless sundresses, shorts, hats, sandals, polo shirts, and tennis shoes. Bright colors and prints predominated, and most outfits were topped off with leis of all colors of the rainbow.
Party-goers included Toledo Club president Dirk VanHeyst and his wife, Julie; Alex and Mary Due, Sherry Shaw, Ned and Ellen Wisniewski, and Hunt and Sherri Sears.
Guests were in the mood to dance at around 10:30 p.m., and they swayed to the beats pumped out by the cover band Touched, bathed in red and purple lights onstage. The group's rendition of "Play that Funky Music" had dozens of dancers rocking to the rhythm.
Some wanted to work off the feast prepared for the evening. The menu included shrimp cocktail followed by crab legs, carved prime rib, and fresh-smoked salmon topped off with strawberry cheesecake.
Other guests were by no means wallflowers. Many were parts of large groups socializing, sipping tropical drinks, and sampling the snacks at their tables. Others stood near the sides of the balcony and mingled while people-watching from the second floor.
The event was a tie-in with the club's international squash tournament, which ended yesterday. About 130 squash players from around the world traveled to Toledo to play in the annual event.
But John Seidel, who attended the party with his wife, Kim, didn't need to travel far. He's a local squash player who said it's a relief to shed his winter clothes and think summer at the annual party.
Scott Dennel from St. Louis not only played in the squash tournament, he also played a guitar onstage while the band was taking a break. He and some other Australian-born guests gave the crowd an impromptu performance of "Down Under" by Men at Work.
- Erika Ray
THE FIRST formal ball of the U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps, Commodore Perry Division, was a brilliant success Saturday at the Conn-Weisenberger American Legion hall on West Alexis Road.
The corps has 27 cadets, ages 11 to 19, who get a taste of the military by attending monthly drill weekends at the Navy and Marine Corps Reserve Center in Perrysburg. They also march in parades and attend flag raising and retirement ceremonies.
Clyde High School student Amanda Bowser's father was in the Navy and the military life appeals to her. "I think people look at you differently," said Ms. Bowser, 16. Two weeks of boot camp at Camp Perry in 2004 taught her a new level of discipline. "It helps you be mature," she said.
Chelsy Dohm, 15, has wanted to join a military program since she was 8 years old. "It gives more structure to your life," said the Archbold High School student. "I'm definitely going to be in the military."
Dan Brown, 18, plans to enlist in the Navy shortly after his graduation from Penta Career Center in May. "I've always loved the Navy. My grandpa and uncle fought in World War II." He'd like to be a gunner's mate and join the special forces.
Deandre Towns, of Rogers High School, has been a cadet for almost a year. Like most cadets, he is not planning to enlist after high school. Austin Floyd, 12, who attends Fallen Timbers Middle School, said he's always been interested in the military. "It's fun. It's challenging. You have to do physical and mental work," he said.
John Morrin likes the training opportunities cadets can partake in. A freshman at Perrysburg High School, he hopes to be a Navy pilot.
About 165 adults and youth attended the event, which included a buffet dinner, an awards ceremony, and dancing.
Four cadets were presented with honors: Ryan Moeller, 16, of Sylvania Southview High School, received the Navy League of the United States Youth Medal; David Shipko, Jr., 17, of St. John's Jesuit High School, received the Daughters of the American Revolution ROTC Award; Jacob Johlin, a senior at Genoa Local High School, received the Good Citizenship Award from the Sons of the American Revolution, and Erica Renzhofer, 18, who attends St. Ursula Academy, received the VFW Naval Sea Cadet Award. She will attend the U.S. Naval Academy in the fall.
The Naval Sea Cadet Corps was established in 1958. The Commodore Perry Division began 25 years ago, but became inactive and was recommissioned in 2002.
- Tahree Lane
THE THEME of Saturday night's Maumee Rotary Service Foundation Auction was "Sound of Music," and about 300 party-goers were entertained with songs from the musical, performed by Maumee High School singers.
Mountains dotted with music notes formed the backdrop of the stage at Gladieux Meadows.
But the night was really all about the auction, which brought in $107,000, of which about $90,000 is expected to be profit for the Rotary's charitable causes. One of the biggest beneficiaries is to be the new diabetes center at St. Luke's Hospital.
The 26th annual auction was dedicated to the late Chuck Oswald, the long-time owner of the Appliance Center, who is credited with starting the event. The work didn't end Saturday night, however, said his daughter, Julie Oswald, who now owns the Appliance Center and is in line to become the Maumee Rotary Club's first female president next year.
Several of the more than 50 items sold in the live auction were dinners or other entertainment to be arranged - and in some cases prepared and served - by Rotary members. Among them:
"GREGarious," promised as a five-course, gourmet Italian dinner for 10 prepared by Greg Rufty, founder and former owner of Gianno's in Maumee, and served by Greg Smith, Greg Fish, Greg Elder, and Greg Hendel. You guessed it. GREGarious accounts for all of the men named Greg in the 85-member club. The dinner sold for $1,300.