08/07/05 — Tournament brings in record amount for WCC

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Tournament brings in record amount for WCC

By News-Argus Staff
Published in News on August 7, 2005 2:02 AM

The annual Wayne Com-munity College Benefit Golf Tournament held recently at Lane Tree Golf Course in Goldsboro raised the most money in the event's history and more than any other North Carolina community college's golf tournament, college officials report.

The $51,000 in proceeds from this year's tournament will provide more than 100 scholarships this fall, officials said last week.

Next year's 14th annual tournament has been scheduled for June 13 and 14 at Lane Tree Golf Club.

The latest figures bring the total the tournament has raised in its 13 years to $467,000. The money goes to the Foundation of Wayne Community College for distribution as scholarships to individual students.

"Thirteen was a lucky number for the students of Wayne Community College," tournament co-chairman Geoff Kokiko said. "This was the best WCC tournament ever on so many fronts, from the quality of the events to the support of the participants, to the money raised."

Foundation Executive Director Jack Kannan said the community's generosity continues to be strong. Donors provide items for the auction and the player goodie bag, Kannan said. Others contribute by buying 50/50 tickets or paying to play in the tournament.

"Sponsorships are an easy sell to our business community," Kannan said. "They know that what they give to Wayne Community College will come back to them in well-trained employees and improved quality of life for Wayne County."

Twenty-two businesses, organizations and individuals gave $1,000 each to be corporate sponsors. They were BB&T, BellSouth, Jack Best, College Bookstores of America, Cox Construction & Properties, Dan Wise Chevrolet, Deacon Jones, First Citizens Bank, Frema Motors, The Goldsboro News-Argus, Grand Rental Station, Mission Foods, New Century Bank, Park Designs, Partin & Hobbs, P.A., Pittard, Perry & Crone Inc., Progress Energy, Prudential The McMillen Real Estate Group, Wachovia Bank, Wayne Realty & Insurance Inc. and Wooten Oil Co.

Another 46 businesses signed on as gold and blue sponsors, and Fairway Outdoor Advertising provided billboards promoting the tournament for the second year.

The event was founded in 1993 by Wooten Oil Co. as a way to contribute to a cause that would keep all money raised local. Company President Dillon Wooten is still instrumental in the tournament, and Wooten Oil/Kwik Mart continues to be a corporate sponsor.

This year's speaker, former college basketball coach Billy Lee, kept attendees laughing before the June 14 pre-tournament dinner provided by Outback Steakhouse, the meal sponsor for the second year.

The evening's silent and live auctions brought in close to $6,000, and Kannan said the scholarship pot benefitted when the winner of the 50/50 drawing, Dillon Wooten, returned his winnings to the $6,590 pot.

"That was a surprise," said Kannan. "We don't expect winners to give their prizes back, but Dillon Wooten is just that supporting and generous. He literally put his money where his mouth is."

A full field of 130 players hit the links the next morning. The top team in the four-person super-ball tournament was Eddie Daniels, Jeff Garris, Michael Sauls and Todd Williams, with a net score of 50.

It was a team of community and college volunteers, under the leadership of this year's tournament chairmen Kokiko, Chris Cox and Rick Sumner, that ensured a great tournament, Kannan said.

"We really appreciate everyone's work," he said. "They made this one the most successful one yet. It just keeps getting better."