Golfing with Love: An overview of our 11th Annual Golf Tournament

If ERHF were to pick out a word that defined last Friday, October 15th, 2021 when we hosted our 11th annual Golf Tournament at Smithfield’s Country Club in Easley, South Carolina, it would be love. 

 The Tournament kicked off at 8 am when three of our teams teed off for a morning round of golf. Even that early in the morning, if you were to walk up to the clubhouse you would hear jovial laughter and commentary from everyone present. We shared a Chick-Fil-A breakfast with our morning golfers and sent them off with directions from Golf Pro Kobe. 

Then it was full speed ahead as we quickly began to set up for the volunteers who would arrive in a few minutes to help us check golfers in, run our silent auction, pack each golf card with snacks and stuff our golfer gifts. It was a lot to get done, but when 9 rolled around and our volunteers began to arrive, we were ready for them. 

“The ERHF golf tournament is always one of the most exciting days of the year for Jason and me,” said Co-founder Susan Smith. “We love seeing our community of volunteers excitedly preparing everything for our golfers arrival and as tee time gets closer, we get more and more excited!” 

Once our golfers arrived, our excitement for the day continued to rise exponentially as ERHF watched our volunteers and golfers connect over their lunch sponsored by Subway of sandwiches, chips and cookies. After lunch was over, Executive Director David Eill pulled everyone together to pray and watch our butterfly release, released by one of our heart warriors, Landyn Clark. 

Before the release, Landyn’s mom, McKenzie Bagwell, spoke about their experience with ERHF and how we were able to assist her family through meal tickets, fellowship and financial support. After Bagwell spoke about their experience with ERHF, one of ERHF’s Co-founders, Jason Smith, pulled Landyn up and asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up in which he answered excitedly, “A power Ranger Ninja Warrior.” 

Landyn’s answer reminded us about why we all collected at the tournament, so kids like Landyn can dream about their future and live a life they are excited about. Smith encouraged all the golfers to remember Landyn as they golfed, and mirror his enthusiasm for life, despite the situation he was in. 

After this Golf Pro Kobe explained the tournament rules and some of the challenges like longest drive and closest to the pin. Then the golfers were sent off and the day ran itself for a few hours. Our volunteers were able to take a little rest as some headed onto the golf course to provide snacks and drinks to our golfers, sell string or even continue to stay stationed at the club. 

 One amazing volunteer who goes by Susan expressed how she “Loves the excitement and heartfelt messages that were given to everyone who participated.” Susan expressed how this Golf Tournament has inspired everyone to live a life full of excitement, love, and hope that the ERHF always gives to everyone.  

By 5 p.m., most of our golfers were finished and we began to slowly connect again at the club where dinner provided by The Smokin’ Pig was set up and waiting to be eaten. It was there we announced the tournament results and silent auction winners. 

Clemson Insurance took first place followed by The Mill Church in second place and Issaqueena Pediatric Dentistry in third. We went about the silent auction differently this year as we used a more technological approach called Handbid Software. Our hopes are that we will continue to use it in the future so that our silent auctions continue. Some of our silent auction items were a Michelin tire certificate, Weber and Louisiana grills were a huge hit! We raised $8,150 at the silent