2023 Tiretown Scholarship Tournament

2023 Tiretown Scholarship Tournament

The country’s largest Black golf club in the country staged one of its most successful scholarship tournaments on Saturday, July 8 at J.E. Good Park Golf Course in Akron – home of Tiretown Golf Club, which celebrates its 73rd year in 2023.

The annual scholarship tournament raised more than $15,000. Thanks in large part to our members, partners and guests. The event had 144 golfers and 120 hole sponsors – including individuals and area businesses.

Tiretown Golf Club and Tiretown Golf Charities appreciate the continued support of those who share our vision of supporting our scholarship recipients, who have worked diligently in pursuit of achieving a college education. Once again, our members – both full, associate and juniors – pitched in to ensure that the tournament was successful.

The proceeds from the tournament enables Tiretown Golf Charities to provide funding for our scholarship recipients for five years. The initial payment of $500 was given to our seven scholars during the post-tournament program.

Those students receiving 2023 scholarships are: Kennedy Curry (University of Akron), Kyla Carney (Kent State University), Layla Nelson (Kent State University), Jarrett Brantley (Stark State), Ricardo Quintana (University of Akron), Darren Collins (Kent State) and Sydnee Wade (Kent State).

While we celebrated our scholars, the competition on the course was exciting. A number of the 36 teams – including five in the women’s flight – were in contention on a golf course that was in near-perfect condition, thanks to manager Jim Harris’ staff, which enabled the tournament to go on without a hitch.

These are the tournament results:

The men’s foursome to capture the title with 13-under par consisted of Steve Wilson Jr., Doug Fleming, Jeff Mirelli and Steve Fiest. With a score of 11-under, the team of Phil Ferguson IV, Mike Ferguson, Phil Ferguson and Justin Dombrady finished second. The third-place team of Berry Ward, Brandon Ward, Vince Delorenzo and Anthony Delorenzo also finished 11-under but lost the tiebreaker on the No.1 handicap hole. 

The team of Karen Augustynovich, Ann Godwin, Laura Traganza and Debbie Quinn captured the women’s championship with a 4-under par 68. The second place team, anchored by Pam Valentine and Joanne Jones, was 2-under and finishing third with a 2-under, 70 is the team of Ros Harris, Laurel Marson, Carrie Tucker and Mary Banton.

It’s one of the few times in club history in which there was a women’s flight. In all, a record 27 women competed in the scholarship tournament, according to tournament director Clarence Mitchell Jr. 

The most memorable moment during the tournament came not on the course, but during the post-tournament program. Tom Mitchell, who teamed with member Van Culliton, won the 50/50 raffle – $595 of $1,195. In a remarkably generous gesture, he then donated his winnings – plus $5 – to the six scholarship recipients who were attending with their parents. 

The event was great, and the handful of members I got to meet were all very friendly and welcoming,” Mitchell said. “My connection to the event was through Van Culliton, who I’ve known for many years. Earlier this year we were at the driving range and he was telling me about the “traveling golf league” he was in and he also explained that the group awarded scholarships to people in the community.

“This was great to learn, so when the opportunity to play in the outing came up, I said yes right away.  I brought $50 to donate through the 50/50 raffle that day, and never expected to have the winning ticket.  The math worked out perfectly that each scholarship recipient could receive an extra $100, so I had to go for it!  As an alumni of the University of Akron, it was nice to hear that a couple new students are headed there too.  And I know how expensive books were 20 years ago, so I can only imagine the cost today.”

“The thanks that I got from the students, a couple parents, and other members was truly genuine and heartwarming, and a memory that I’ll cherish. I hope to participate in future events as long as Van keeps me informed.  Your organization is clearly great for the community and has an impressive 73 years of service and counting!”

Also, there were only two skins worth $320. The team of Michael Robinson, Larry Johnson, Isaac Seever and Elliott Kolkovich carded an eagle on the par-5 second hole and the foursome of Steve Wilson, Doug Fleming, Jeff Mirelli and Steve Fiest recorded an eagle on the par-4 12th hole. 

The fourth annual Tiretown Junior Golf Club Fundraiser event will be held on Sept. 16 at Mud Run Golf Course in Akron. For those interested in participating, please contact tournament director Clarence Mitchell, Fund Development co-chairs Marilyn Miller Paulk and Dr. Robert Kamienski.

Again, thanks to our members, sponsors, guests, Good Park Golf Course staff – and countless others for your contributions in helping make the annual scholarship tournament a success.

Ralph N. Paulk – President 

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