The annual Golfers Against Cancer (GAC) Kingwood Dinner and Golf Tournaments are scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 23 through Monday, Nov. 25 at The Clubs of Kingwood.
- 23nd Annual GAC is big fundraiser -
All interested in helping to find a cure for cancer and enjoy all the festivities are encouraged to sign up through golfersagainstcancer.org. Participants come from across the country and acknowledge this event as one of the premier fundraisers held in the Houston area.
This will be the 23rd year for GAC’s Kingwood event. The tournament kicks off with a dinner and auction on Saturday evening. The Corporate Shootout, for Diamond- and Platinum-level sponsors, will be on Sunday and the GAC tournament, the main event, will be held on Monday.
There is also a special Mike Longpre’ ProAm tournament that is a local pro event held in conjunction with the tournaments with a purse of $25,000; $10,000 to the winner.
The first year of fundraising featured a golf tournament at Deerwood Golf Club. Spearheaded by founder Bobby Jones with a remarkable core of founding board members, that first tournament exceeded all expectations by raising $85,000, and with that success, the group incorporated as a 501(c) (3) charitable organization. The following year, in addition to the tournament, a gala was held, complete with a dinner and auction. GAC has since expanded into what it is today, including similar fundraisers held both locally as well as across the country.
Jones still serves as GAC’s visionary and is co-chair of the Kingwood tournaments along with Dan McIntyre. In addition to serving on the GAC board, McIntyre created and carries out GAC tournaments of his own at Walden on Lake Conroe as well as Northgate Country Club in Houston. They have become staple fundraising events with corporate sponsors, volunteers and healthy participation among area golfers and have contributed immensely to GAC’s funds for research.
Having had his own personal bout with cancer in 2009, McIntyre was inspired to help Jones and the GAC leadership do more to help find a cure. After surgery and follow-up treatments at M.D. Anderson, he was cancer free but he then realized first-hand how important cancer research is in saving lives.
“The more GAC can contribute to research efforts, the more we can do to help find a cure,” he said.
It’s been Jones’ vision from the beginning. “In creating an all-volunteer board and staff, virtually all of the net funds raised are donated to worthy cancer research hospitals and organizations,” he said. “With the generous help of so many, Golfers Against Cancer has raised well over $25 million, including matching funds, from their local events as well other GAC tournaments and dinners held across the country.”
Besides local participation, Jones also acknowledges the valued support of the corporate sponsors.
“As the title sponsor, United Airlines has been with the organization since the beginning, generously donating countless air travel trips through GAC auctions, supporting many of the functions through their employee volunteer efforts such as the 777 BBQ Team, and encouraging their travel agency partners to participate. It’s difficult to measure all that they have done. There are a number of other corporate sponsors, too many to mention here, that also make the organization a success,” he added.
Tournament director and long-time boardmember Bob Spinetti is instrumental in making the Kingwood flagship tournaments run smoothly.
“We’re looking forward to another great golf event this year. Couple that with the fact that we raise money for cancer research and it becomes a win-win situation,” he said.
Spinetti is also proud of helping organize the Longpre’ Pro Am, which adds additional dollars to the bottom line and has come to be known as one of the most popular local pro events of the year. The tournament honors the memory of Mike Longpre’, local Deerwood pro who lost his battle with cancer some years ago.
Jones said there are many others whose tireless efforts help make GAC a success. Boardmember Gary Green, who tackles more than his fair share of responsibilities, helps manage the silent auction, audio visual support for the dinner, and social media management which helps spread the word. A full plate indeed, considering the size and magnitude of these functions.
“There are so many others from our original founding board to our newer board members who represent new leadership and new ideas. We look to the future with pride. We want Golfers Against Cancer to prosper and continue delivering the funding to support much needed cancer research for many years to come,” Jones concluded.
Visit golfersagainstcancer.org to sign up, volunteer or become a corporate sponsor.