LUMBERTON — The nice time had every year by contributors on the Clifford Bullard Memorial Golf Event is in the end secondary to the cash raised to assist native college students attend Robeson Neighborhood School.
Even Phil Ford and Al Wooden would agree.
The 2 College of North Carolina basketball legends are among the many contributors for this 12 months’s event, which will probably be held Thursday at Pinecrest Nation Membership in Lumberton.
“It’s an incredible trigger for the faculty, and we’re serving to quite a bit with scholarships for folk that may’t usually go, and hopefully we’re serving to them out,” mentioned Clif Bullard, son of the event’s namesake. “One of many issues Dad beloved, he beloved that faculty.”
In its 36-year historical past, the event has raised over $325,000 for the Robeson Neighborhood School Basis; this consists of constantly elevating round $25,000 per 12 months over the past a number of years.
“It’s grown fairly considerably, nevertheless it’s grown too as a result of the Bullards have actually taken possession of the event, which makes a distinction,” mentioned RCC Basis director Rebekah Revels Lowry. “They actually get entangled, they usually have concepts they carry to the desk and need to assist. It actually makes a distinction when you’ve a group that’s working exhausting and a household that’s working exhausting.”
As of Friday morning there are 27 four-person groups signed as much as play, Lowry mentioned.
“We’ve averaged in all probability 125 golfers within the subject yearly,” mentioned event chairman Bruce Mullis, who has been concerned within the event for practically three many years. “Lots of people have supported the inspiration for a few years, by means of sponsorships and the golfers enjoying within the golf event.”
The event was named for Clifford Bullard after his dying in 2003. Beforehand, Bullard was the proprietor of what’s now Carolina Golf Membership in Lumberton, the place the occasion was held till just a few years in the past, and coated the inexperienced and cart charges for event contributors.
His sons, Clif and Drew Bullard, have continued to take action, and Bullard Restaurant Group, which they personal, additionally offers catering from Smithfield’s Rooster ‘N Bar-B-Q.
“Golf tournaments are a tough fundraiser,” Lowry mentioned. “It may be a beast as a result of there’s plenty of bills on the again facet that folks don’t consider. However we’re so lucky as a result of we’ve this household that helps us a lot, they usually present us meals and we don’t need to tackle that individual expense.”
Ford and Wooden have performed the occasion the previous couple of years. Ford performed at UNC from 1974-78, was a three-time All-American, received ACC and nationwide participant of the 12 months awards, and led the Tar Heels to the 1977 nationwide championship sport. Wooden was an All-American and three-time All-ACC participant in his profession from 1977-81.
Ford mentioned the event is essential to him due to its trigger supporting schooling.
“I’m actually massive on schooling,” Ford mentioned. “My mother and pop had been public faculty lecturers, so anytime I can get a possibility to do one thing for schooling, I attempt to do it, I attempt to assist out as a lot as I can. Some outdated mates get collectively and tee it up for an incredible trigger, so it’s all the time lots of enjoyable.”
A bonus for Ford is the possibility to go to Robeson County, the place he has household ties.
“I get pleasure from going to Robeson County as a result of my dad grew up in Marietta,” Ford mentioned. “Anytime I get an opportunity to return again I reap the benefits of it.”
For event organizers, having regional celebrities like Ford and Wooden in attendance elevates the occasion.
“Folks geek out if their favourite staff has a star there,” Lowry mentioned. “I believe it’s human nature, once you see somebody you placed on a distinct standing, they’re related to this nice, wonderful staff that’s made historical past within the subject of basketball; once they’re hooked up to your event, it provides the event a distinct sort of standing.
“We welcome individuals to return out and meet the blokes. They had been actually open to that final 12 months, they signed autographs.”
An added ingredient in Ford and Wooden’s participation this 12 months is that the possibility to play the event paired with every will probably be auctioned off, including to the cash being raised for the RCC Basis (see associated story, web page A4).
Past the basketball stars in attendance, a lot of these enjoying the occasion have ties to the Bullard household.
“We all know everyone, and Clif has lots of his outdated fraternity brothers who knew our dad, they’ve made it a degree to return help his reminiscence, and help the varsity,” Drew Bullard mentioned.
However even these with none direct ties to the Bullard household or to RCC will nonetheless benefit from the occasion.
“The golfers who take part, they all the time appear to extremely benefit from the event and the door prizes and the meals and the logistical setup,” Mullis mentioned. “All people all the time appears to have a extremely good time, and we’ve been blessed with good climate nearly each time we’ve had the event.”
The occasion is a brilliant ball/captain’s alternative format, with four-person groups. Shotgun begins will probably be held at 8:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., with registration at 7:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., and lunch at midday.
Charges embody mulligans, girls tees, cart, refreshments, lunch and prizes. There’s additionally an ongoing raffle and an opportunity to win $500.
People can join $75, with four-player sign-ups together with tremendous sponsor for $350, bronze sponsor for $500, silver sponsor for $1,000, gold sponsor for $2,500 and platinum sponsor for $5,000. Gap sponsorships are additionally out there for $150. Charges might be paid on-line at https://tinyurl.com/RCCFoundation, or registration might be mailed to the RCC Basis at P.O. Field 1420, Lumberton, N.C., 28359, or faxed to 910-272-3237.
Because the event continues to develop, Clif Bullard says it would solely assist Robeson County to develop into the longer term, too.
“All the cash we are able to increase, 100% of it goes straight to the faculty. That’s the concept,” Clif Bullard mentioned. “The higher we are able to do serving to the faculty, the long term helps the group with educating our of us in Robeson County, which is healthier for all of us.
“Our objective is to make (the event) develop, whether or not it’s just a little bit or quite a bit, yearly. We attempt to make it higher yearly for the faculty.”