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It was a bright sunny day when the 17th annual Sunshine Golf Classic, sponsored by the Messner Foundation, teed off at the Harbor Pines Golf Club. Norma D’Angelo, Beth Bowman, Carole Aust, Joanne Marzulli and Barbara Riggione arrived at Harbor Pines by 9:30 a.m. to set up the Chinese and silent auctions, register golfers and sell mulligans and raffle tickets, then they took turns during the classic monitoring holes-in-one, longest drive and closest to the pin holes.
Barbara Riggione told me her mother, Josephine Costanza, started the Ocean City chapter of the Sunshine Foundation 35 years ago. Bill Sample, founder of the Sunshine Foundation, and Vice President Richard Hock enjoyed lunch sponsored by McGlade’s Restaurant with golfers before the shotgun start. When Mary Jane Weissenberg, president of the Cape Atlantic chapter, arrived mid-afternoon, she headed out on the course to relieve folks watching the holes. Beth Bowmanhad a golf cart waiting when this columnist showed up for our annual joy ride around the course. We stopped to chat with Todd Bower Jr. in the Pro Shop and he gave me a list of the foursomes.
Jim “Faz” Fazio was easy to spot in his bright red shirt running the closest to the pin contest. Beth worried about her hair as she sped around the course. We stopped see how Rich King and George Seltzer were golfing, but they were just happy to out of the office. Beth spotted husband Charlie and we stopped to take his picture with his foursome, Tom Oves, Greg Whelan and Jerry Whelan. However, finding the foursome of Sallie Godfrey, Pat Pacifico, Susan Sheppard and Melissa Wilson was another story. When we finally did, Pat was beaming as he loved playing golf with three women.
By the time we arrived back in the clubhouse, this columnist’s hair was still in place, but Beth did a major overhaul to her windblown hair. I enjoyed chatting with Donna Samango, who loves volunteering and was named Ocean City Volunteer of the Year many years ago. Tricia Bowman Branch drove down from North Jersey to emcee the festivities and brought 7-year-old daughter Siena as she wanted to learn more about the Sunshine Foundation and see where her mother goes each year. Tricia has been involved with the foundation since 1987 during her tenure as Miss Cape May County.
As Miss New Jersey, Tricia traveled the state spreading the word about the Sunshine Foundation and in 2000 was chosen as the chapter’s Humanitarian of the Year. Siena is tall and thin and following in her mother’s footsteps as she sported a raspberry chiffon sundress and silver sandals with little heels.
Kate Sample, president of the Sunshine Foundation, was a whirlwind of activity taking pictures of everyone in the dining room. After having lunch with the golfers, John Cotshott returned to Harbor Pines in time for dinner along with daughter Joanne Zimmer, OCHS Class of 1976, who lives in Egg Harbor Township. Mary Jane Weissenberg and Carole Aust said nobody got a hole-in-one when they returned to the clubhouse sporting their Sunshine Foundation shirts. Claire Paugh, secretary of the local chapter, was busy tending to last minute details and making sure everything was ready for dinner, sponsored by Synergistic Healthcare, as golfers returned to the clubhouse. First-time volunteers, Carolyn Carita and her mom, Barbara Carita, enjoyed watching for a hole-in-one most of the afternoon. Dallas Krapf stated “Penn State will be back” when I took his picture with JR Robinson, who lives in Ocean City and Chadds Ford, Pa., and Harry Hines, who lives in Corbin City.
Michael Hoffman had a grin from ear to ear when he told me he and wife Denise are first-time grandparents; and it’s a granddaughter, Reese Patricia Hoffman, who is 6 months old. The proud parents are Tim and Kate Hoffman, who live in Media, Pa. Michael had more exciting news as son Stephen has joined his father in the real estate business at Marr Agency. I told Michael I remember when he was in high school and cleaned the office at Carey Real Estate. Jen Bowman, who was celebrating her birthday, arrived with daughters Caroline, who is Miss Sunshine after her field hockey game, Kelsea and Katie. Not yet 17, Caroline has raised over $50,000 for charity, while sister Kelsea recently celebrated her birthday and asked classmates to bring a $5 donation for the Sunshine Foundation instead of a gift. She presented $500 to the foundation. Katiewill celebrate her 7th birthday in November and plans to get started with her fundraising.
The hungry golfers didn’t waste any time lining up for the Italian buffet as soon at the staff put it out. I sat down to talk to Harry Vanderslice, Kevin Redmond, Scott Raab and Steve Lane, who carried this foursome, while they ate dinner. I admired Scott’s baseball cap with a bottle opener then he told me son Cory is a freshman at Temple in pre-dental while Kevin’s son, Nicholas, is a freshman at Drexel. When I sat down on Harry’s lap, Scott made sure he got our picture. With only one picture left for my column, I finally corralled co-chair Carmen D’Angelo and fellow golfers Jim Dever, Ray Stackhouse, Jerry Ayotte, Jim McMahon, Jack Boyle and Dennis Egan, who willingly took a break from eating dinner for a picture.
After dinner, Tricia Branch, fighting back tears, highlighted the life of Sunshine’s Angel, Marianne Cotshott, who passed away in August after devoting 27 years to helping children and their families. She started this Golf Classic, always dedicated to increasing awareness for the Sunshine Foundation and raising much-needed funds to grant the dreams of children. Next, Tricia
introduced the two children being granted their wishes, Bailey and Cienna, who were delighted with their Mickey and Minnie Mouse stuffed animals as they are going to Disney World with their families and will stay at the Sunshine Dream Village.
Mike King stepped up to announce the Golf Classic winners: Closest to the Pin – Jim McMahon; Straightest Drive – Stephen D’Angelo; and Longest Drives – Joe Berenato and Micki McGlade.
First place in the Classic went to Ed and Ray Badyna, EJ Amaroso and Wil Parsels. Second place went to Dallas Krapf, Charles Cristella, Harry Hines and JR Robinson. Third place went to Rich King, George Seltzer, Phil Perskie and Rev. David Fleming.
The Bowman girls helped distribute the silent and Chinese auction prizes donated by area golf courses and local merchants. High bidders in the silent auction were: Harold Messner, Ginger Sulouski, Kevin Redmond, Dave McFarland. Mike King, Steve Cusato and another for Harold Messner with his high bid on a Cole Hamels autographed baseball.
Every golfer took home a souvenir Sunshine Foundation golf umbrella.
Charlie Bowman rode over to Harbor Pines with his neighbor, Laird Warner, and when he wanted to head home, Charlie said he get a ride home with his wife, Beth. Caroline Bowman was anxious to get back to Ocean City to see the boys soccer game.