golf

Gumpy Esch gets ready to take a swing during the Play Fore the Kids Golf Tournament on Wednesday at the Sevierville Golf Club with his teammates, Storm Shular, Jay Wise and Barry Shular, looking on.

SEVIERVILLE — It was a beautiful day on the golf course Wednesday as golfers from around the community came together to support the Boys & Girls Club of the Smoky Mountains.

The 19th annual Play Fore the Kids Golf Tournament took place at the Sevierville Golf Club. The fundraising event featured 60 teams and brought in funds to help run the five clubs in the local Boys & Girls Club system.

“This will be our best tournament ever,” said Mark Ross, CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of the Smoky Mountains. “We had the best sponsorships and Volunteer Chevrolet donated a $60,000 pickup truck that we sold 350 $250-each raffle tickets to, so somebody here tonight’s going to drive off in that truck, or if they don’t want the truck they can take $50,000 cash.”

The truck was donated in full to support the event, which ended with a drop of the 350 marked golf balls from a helicopter operated by Sevier County Choppers helicopter tour company.

“We hope we can raise $200,000. It’s our largest special event,” Ross said. “We’re just so fortunate to have great sponsors. A lot of these sponsors have been with us for 15-19 years and they just keep coming back year after year and we just say thank you to them for making a great day for the Boys & Girls Club kids.”