A ‘reinvigoration’ taking place for 42nd ACS golf tourney

No matter what walk of life you come from, chances are your life has been effected, either directly or indirectly, by cancer.

Since its inception in 1978, the American Cancer Society Men’s Golf Championship in Warren County has raised over 1.4 million dollars, and this year’s 42nd edition, slated for Wednesday, Aug. 7 at the Conewango Valley Country Club, will add another chapter to that legacy.

It started out by raising $300, and grew all the way to a peak of $84,000.

John Zawacki, a founding father of the event, is back at the control’s, along with WCCBI Director of Chamber Operations and Tourism, John Papalia and ACS Community Development Manager Shane Launer.

It ranks as the second oldest American Cancer Society golf tournament in the country, and last year brought in $20,000.

“We’re calling it a reinvigoration,” said Zawacki. “The event lost some steam over the years, but I believe we are bringing that back.”

Zawacki and Papalia are making it personal as well, with handwritten notes sent out to sponsors and patrons.

“People support causes because they’re critically important to them,” Zawacki said. “We’re excited about what we can do this year, and it’s rewarding to do it in your own community.”

For his part, Papalia is eager as well.

“We’re excited to be a part of it again,” he said. “John (Zawacki) has been amazing. It’s an honor to serve with him. This is something that everyone is effected by.”

Added Launer: “This is my second year involved, and it’s an amazing event with amazing leadership.”

The trio is targeting at least 150 entries this year, with a double shotgun start in the morning and afternoon. The cost is $400 for a foursome, which includes carts.

“The real loyalists tend to come back time and again,” noted Zawacki.

For the morning group, their will be coffee and breakfast served. Everyone will also gets snacks and beverages for lunch, followed by a steak dinner at the conclusion of the event.

“We’re confident that the event can and will grow,” Zawacki said. “The people that have supported this event are largely responsible for its success.”

A number of sponsors have stayed true over the years, but this group is always looking for new people to get involved.

The sponsor levels are as follows: Eagle ($1,000), Birdie ($500), Par ($250), Special ($150) and Hole ($100).

“We’re looking forward to people coming out and supporting the cause,” Papalia said.

For his part, Zawacki plays with a group that are all cancer survivors.

“We have fun with it, and all for the right reasons,” he said. “This is truly a community event.”