The Northeast Georgia Health System’s annual Medical Center Open golf tournament will feature a new twist this year, thanks to COVID-19.
For the first time, the tournament will be hosted in an “on your own” format, whereby participants can schedule tee times and play their round solo at some point during the month of October rather than as a part of a group as in past years, according to organizers.
Competitors can play their round any time between Oct. 1 and Nov. 1, but are encouraged to reserve their tee time at Chicopee Woods Golf Course at least 48 hours in advance.
“The decision to change the format from a live, one-day event to one where golfers and sponsors can participate on their own was not made lightly,” said Chris Bray, president and chief development officer for the NGHS Foundation in a release. “We’re looking forward to continuing this wonderful tradition and raising money for our COVID-19 Relief Fund in a safe way.”
Money raised from the event will go into the COVID-19 Relief Fund, which was created this year “to help frontline employees and patient care impacted by the crisis at NGHS.” The fund is also being used to help grow and enhance NGHS’s telemedicine program, where patients can meet with a doctor virtually.
Competitors will still receive a round of golf at Chicopee Woods Golf Course, meal and drink tickets and game day gifts and sponsor items as part of their participation in the tournament. Score cards must be submitted by Nov. 1, and winners will be announced on Nov. 5.
“COVID-19 has forced us to think of creative ways to do things, and this tournament is no exception,” said Chad Cooper, co-chair of the MCO committee. “Golf is safe; gathering is not. This event format allows us to follow social distancing guidelines while continuing to raise money, recognize our sponsors and rally community support when NGHS needs it most.”