Golf Classic to tee off in support of Bright Futures

On the Bright Futures USA website, success of community outreach is shown to come from even the smallest of sources.

A landlord near Harrisonville, Missouri, secured donations of furniture for a family after he happened to notice their bare apartment didn’t even include beds or a kitchen table. It was a major impact that meant everything to the family, but resulted from a simple gesture he made by contacting his local Bright Futures chapter and asking how they might help.

Bright Futures encourages communities to invest their “time, talent, and treasure” into schools to give underprivileged students their best chance at success, its website explains at http://brightfuturesusa.org/site/default.aspx.

Time can mean mentoring, talent can provide children with learning opportunities, and treasure can materialize through the donation of prom dresses, books or musical instruments.

In Frederick County, the effort is still new but will soon include the fifth annual Chick-fil-A Golf Classic — a golf tournament and fundraiser that this year expanded upon its goal of promoting awareness of juvenile diabetes to include the support of Bright Futures.

Through the investment of time, local Chick-fil-A owner Chuck Guffee and other Bright Futures advisory board members hope to secure the talent of area golfers through which the procurement of local dollars can benefit area school children.

Guffee has been a Bright Futures board member since it started last year, said Keri Mounts, marketing director for Chick-fil-A’s Winchester locations on Pleasant Valley Road and at Rutherford Crossing.

“We saw that there was such a great local need,” Mounts said.

The goal of the local chapter is to offset an increased rate of poverty and homelessness among children while volunteering in schools and easing the stress families are feeling. Area children are in need of clothing, shelter and positive mentors, Mounts said.

It also seeks to team with schools and community organizations to provide services to children that take pressure off of teachers to provide so many materials, said Patrick Barker, executive director of the Frederick County Economic Development Authority.

Customizable to each school’s needs, he said Bright Futures provides an umbrella for community services that can help area children achieve more. Bright Futures doesn’t replace these programs, Barker said. It helps them to be even bigger.

In particular, he said, “There’s a great need for mentors throughout the schools.”

Mounts expects a similar turnout for this year’s golf tournament, as in previous years, and said it’s exciting to hear the community talking about Bright Futures.

The golf tournament at Rock Harbor Golf Course, 365 Rock Harbor Drive, will begin with a shotgun start at 8 a.m. June 26. Registration begins at 7 a.m. A second shotgun start will be at 1:30 p.m., following noon registration. The deadline to register will be June 22.

The course will offer 18 holes of golf, range balls and a golf cart, with activities that include a 50/50 raffle. Awards and merit prizes provided by Valley Cycle and Walter and Walter Insurance will go to the longest drive, the closest to the pin, a hole in one and par three.

The cost of $85 per golfer includes breakfast and lunch for the 8 a.m. round, and lunch and dinner for the 1:30 p.m. round.

Chick-fil-A will continue to support education of Type 1 diabetes, a cause its owner supports after two family members were diagnosed, and plans its Chick-fil-A Dash for Diabetes for September.

But this year, Mounts said, the local family-run franchise hoped to expand its reach across the community.

“Bright Futures is going to help keep money here locally,” Mounts said. “It’s helping the kids right here in our community, and that’s one of our biggest things.”

To register for the tournament, call Keri Mounts at 540-664-8535, or email cfakeri@comcast.net. Make checks payable to Chick-fil-A and write Bright Futures in the memo line. Send checks to 312 Kintyre Lane, Stephens City, VA 22655. Contact Rock Harbor Golf Course at 540-733-7111. For more information on Bright Futures of Frederick County, visit http://www.brightfuturesfrederickcounty.org.

Contact staff writer Josette Keelor at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or jkeelor@nvdaily.com