When golfers hit the links July 9 for the Whitehall Education Foundation's seventh annual Scholarship Scramble, they will shoot for more than just bragging rights for the next year.
They'll be participating in a fundraiser that benefits classroom activities and student scholarships. The golf outing raises thousands of dollars for the foundation each year.
The foundation, now a decade old, is doing well, said Chairman Terry Anderson.
"We've been able to grow the foundation so we can do more and more every year," he said last week amid preparations for the annual event. "The golf outing has been a very stable fundraiser for us."
Each year, more than a dozen teams of golfers take to the greens. Domenik Hixon, a 2001 graduate of Whitehall-Yearling High School and former wide receiver with the New York Giants, has joined the group in years past as a special guest, adding to the list of alumni who return for the event each year. After about five hours of pitching and putting, bailouts and bogeys, the golfers retire to the clubhouse for awards, a raffle and a luncheon.
Anderson said the money raised goes into an endowment that funds classroom grants for Whitehall teachers, helping them out with student projects that might otherwise not be funded. Called mini-grants, the cash awards provide small funding opportunities for classroom-based activities and needs for the academic year.
The foundation also awards a number of student scholarships. Two significant scholarships are handed out each year in the name of James "Herk" Soteriades: one to a senior pursuing post-high school education in the field of safety; the other to a senior pursuing a career in the performing arts, Anderson said.
Soteriades died of liver cancer in May 2000. He was a retired Whitehall firefighter and councilman and an ardent supporter of the district's theater department.
Last spring, the foundation held its inaugural Honors Celebration, during which the group paid tribute to four staff members, two students, eight alumni and two community members for their leadership, motivation and vision.
Anderson said the Honors Celebration will become an annual event.
This year's Scholarship Scramble will be held at Jefferson Country Club in Blacklick, with a shotgun start at 9 a.m.
The event will culminate with a luncheon at the club, during which the annual Living Legend Award recipient will be named. Past award-winners include local broadcaster Monica Day, former Whitehall schools Superintendent Judyth Dobbert-Meloy, Whitehall Mayor Kim Maggard and former Whitehall teacher and coach Phil Allen.
Registration forms are available at the Whitehall schools Facebook page or by calling 614-417-5002.
Those who wish to register the day of the event should arrive by 8 a.m.