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Golf tourney to benefit Special Needs Program

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By Vicky Gits

The Andy Smith Sr. Memorial Special Needs Golf Tournament is set to tee off Monday, July 13, at the Hiwan Country Club in Evergreen.

The lead sponsor is Evergreen Oil Co., and the honorary chairperson is Tony Scheffler, tight end for the Denver Broncos.

Presented annually by the Park and Rec Special Needs Program and the Mountain Foothills Rotary, the half-day event is the main fund-raiser for the Special Needs Program.

The program helps about 60 special-needs kids enjoy activities like summer camp (13 weeks), skiing, ice skating, climbing, bowling, Rockies and Avalanche games, horseback riding and visiting zoos. They have been on ropes courses, climbing walls and whitewater rafting trips.

Under the direction of Maren Schreiber, the kids do the same things that other kids do. “She doesn’t baby them. She treats them like regular kids,” said a parent of one participant.

The program is budgeted at about $90,000 a year. Participation fees generate about $37,000, and the program depends largely on fund-raisers to exist at the current level.

The day’s events begin with a continental breakfast at 6 a.m. Tee-off is 7:30 a.m., followed by lunch, an awards reception, silent auction and speaker, with a 1 p.m. ending time.

Last year’s tournament raised $24,000, including $12,000 for special needs summer camp and scholarships, $6,000 for Evergreen Christian Outreach, and the $6,000 for the Rotary Foundation.

For information contact Maren Schreiber at 303-674-6441, ext. 19 or Mac McFarlane at 303-670-2280. See the website at specialneedsgolf.com, or mountainfoothillsrotary.org/golftournament.