Who would believe what began with a few friends in Columbia would have grown into an annual event that attracts a lot of big names in sports and entertainment?
This year‘s event was the 25th celebrity Pro-Am golf tournament.
Since 1994 when it all began it has changed the venue several times until they came to North Myrtle Beach.
Hootie and the Blowfish, Monday after the Masters is a fundraiser for several charities.
The proceeds are used to strengthen schools and improve educational resources for the South Carolina children and South Carolina Junior Golf Foundation providing scholarships to young students and educators with the tools they need to nurture every student and their talents and to direct them toward a life of success.
Darius Rucker and friends started this nonprofit organization. They have raised more than $2 million to date for the Central Carolina Community Foundation. Hootie and the Blowfish have given opportunity for numerous grants that will benefit children now and in the future.
It’s become a resource that can help people at any time, says Hootie’s bassist, Dean Felber.
The Hootie Foundation benefits the South Carolina Junior Golf Association, an organization that provides the opportunity for boys and girls age seven years old to 18 years old where they can advance their tournament skills and the rules of golf while developing a drive for success.
The South Carolina Junior golf Association is one of the top rated programs in the country. Mark Bryan was quoted saying, “We went to grow this foundation into an organization that our children can one day administrate. What a legacy that would be.
Nobody could have asked for better weather to kick off the 25th anniversary of the Monday after the Masters at Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach. Gates opened at 8 a.m. and shuttles began running people from the House of Blues to the Dye Course.
Announcements began at 8:45 a.m. along with the ROTC students from St.James high school.
Bradford Marsalis started off the venue by performing the national anthem on his saxophone at 9:05 a.m. followed by an SMGA Introduction and the Celebrity Long Drive .
At 9:30 a.m. was the ball drop followed by the long drive exhibition by Tim Burk and David Mobley. At 9:50 a.m. the players mounted their golf carts. The tournament began with Darius Rucker on the fairway driving his ball 250 yards. His second shot landed his ball on the green of the first hole landing about 3 feet from being a hole-in-one. To Pet Slater he sank his ball. Next stop was Mark Bryan, who plays guitar for Hootie & the Blowfish.
The tournament was well underway as the players shot for the long drive with Darius Rucker in the lead.
The participating golfers found the high winds a little bit of a challenge but they were playing hard.
As the tournament came to a close Jimbo Covert , celebrity golfer, and Billy Hurley, professional golfer, were the winners of the charity tournament.
For more information about the 25th Annual Hootie & the Blowfish Monday After the Masters Celebrity Pro-Am Golf Tournament, visit www.HootieGolf.com.