Hole in one shootout a lot of fun for everyone

The first Annual Hole-in-One Golf Shoot-Out was a big hit with those that turned out, but nobody grabbed the Buick.

Closest to the pin on Sunday was Stu Crause

Closest to the pin on Sunday was Stu Crause

The first Annual Hole-in-One Golf Shoot-Out was a big hit with those that turned out, but nobody grabbed the Buick.

Played Sunday at Fairwinds Golf Course under ideal conditions, the shoot-out saw an upbeat and hopeful field of 50 tee it up on the Par 3, 165 yard 10th hole with a brand new 2013 Buick Verano, valued at over 35k, waiting for anyone that could record the ace.

There were no warmup swings and each person got one shot only. Some of the participants were clearly in their element, others, not so much, but it was evident everyone was enjoying themselves.

“I’ve never golfed a day in my life, so we’ll see how it goes,” one young woman said while she waited. She would later give the ball a good wallop much to the delight of the gallery.

The Hole-In-One Shoot-Out is one of a number of promotional events being held at Fairwinds as part of their 25th anniversary, and was also cross-promotion with other area courses organized and sponsored by Harris Oceanside GM.

“We thought it would be a good way to promote golf in Oceanside and to have some fun,” said co-organizer Andy Lankester, explaining that anyone recording a hole in one at any of the six participating Oceanside golf courses over the summer — Fairwinds, Arrowsmith, Pheasant Glen, Morningstar, Eaglecrest, and Q.B. Memorial — were automatically entered in Sunday’s shoot-out.

The contest started in May, and according to Lankester, about 40 people qualified for the event by way of hole in ones, and 20 of those were on hand Sunday, with the rest of the field selected from contest entries on line, at the pro shops and Harris Oceanside GM.

In the meantime, everyone got a keepsake cap with the number in which they shot stenciled on the side.

Stu Crause got the ball rolling as the first up, and his shot stood up to closest to the pin, netting him a GMC golf windbreaker.

One by one the hopefuls took to the line, and body English was abound. Parksville’s Dan Goodfellow had the gallery clapping with a great shot that rolled past the pin.

“I thought it was going to bite more,” Goodfellow, who employed his five-iron for the shot, shrugged with a grin after.

“We thought we were in for a good run because the first four golfers hit the green, and then it kind of went downhill from there,” Lankester chuckled after it was over.

Once everyone was done he said they rounded up all the balls that hit the green — “there were probably about 10, and we gave them all prizes. The feedback was really good,” he said, adding “we dodged a bullet with the weather (and) a number of people came up to me and said what a great experience it was, but what was really neat was that so many of the people that came out are customers of ours. It was just really heartwarming that so many of the people were there in support of the dealership. It was nice.”

And while the event came up short attracting the full field of 144 they had hoped, “we plan on holding it every year,” he said.

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