By ROB GLIDDEN
The annual J.Timothy’s Golf Classic tournament has contributed over $200,000 to the Plainville Food Pantry in two decades and is returning for its 21st year.
The very first tournament was held at Southington’s Pine Valley golf course before moving to the Tunxis Plantation Golf Course the next year, where it has remained. This year, it will be held on Wednesday, May 15.
Jim Welch of J. Timothy’s said that the event’s origins came from the popular restaurant’s desire to give back to the
“There are a lot of people in town who owe the food pantry a great deal,” said Jim Welch of J. Timothy’s. “We thought we could benefit their cause and create a fun event.”
The consistent success of the event has been a boon for the pantry, especially in recent years as tough economic conditions and high demand have put huge pressure on the organization. Executive Director Susie Woerz said the pantry had lost $49,000 worth of funding since last year, as a growing need across the state and nation makes grants and donations more competitive.
She said the community has always stepped up when asked to help and was optimistic that the tournament would help replenish their resources once again.
“It’s been a very successful event and we’re hoping people sign up as soon as possible so we can get a full field,” Woerz said.
The event has always enjoyed some success, but Welch said that participation has risen dramatically since the economy began to go downhill.
“In the last few years, we’ve been using both of the 18-hole courses at Tunxis,” he said. “It’s become quite a big size tournament. We have great local participation and even when people can’t play, sometimes they help out in other ways.”
In addition to playing an 18-hole golf game, participants also eat dinner and lunch on the Tunxis course. A raffle and silent auction are also part of the event. This year, the tournament has its own website (jtimothysgolf.com) intended to handle registrations and provide information about the event.