October 9, 2023- BARTLESVILLE, OK
The fundraising goal for the 20th anniversary United Way Golf Scramble was a lofty one – $1 million.
The final result exceeded those lofty expectations – more than $1.1 million.
A four-day event held each year in mid-September, the Golf Scramble has become not just a signature event of the annual fundraising campaign to benefit the Bartlesville Regional United Way and the programs of its nonprofit partner agencies, but a vital part of the effort.
“It’s a very special event,” says Lisa Cary, who serves as the president and CEO of the Bartlesville Regional United Way (BRUW). “Our turnout was great this year, and the weather was perfect. People were excited about the event and ready to give.”
Spanning from Sept. 12-15, the 20th iteration of the Golf Scramble drew more than 900 golfers to the Adams Municipal Golf Course in Bartlesville, where it’s held every year. The event raises money through sponsorships of the event, donations, auctions and fees for the golfers. In addition, there is a sponsor reception which is held in the middle of the tournament – this year, on Sept. 13 – at the Hilton Garden Inn (HGI). While this year’s golf tournament generated more than $1.1 million toward the BRUW’s 2023 fundraising campaign, the economic impact on the community – as hundreds of people poured into town for the event – spanned far beyond that.
The two biggest sponsors and organizers of the event are ConocoPhillips and Philips 66. Many of the companies’ employees fill various volunteer roles to ensure the event is a great one. ConocoPhillips’ Randy John and Ashley Primm have coordinated the event together for the last few years. John helped originate the Golf Scramble in 2004 and has guided it throughout its existence.
“I’m proud of what we have accomplished over these last two decades,” says John. “We wanted to put together an event which would make a positive impact in our community, and I feel like we’ve accomplished that mission.”
The evolution of the Golf Scramble has been breathtaking. During its inaugural year in 2004, the event played out over a half-day and raised an estimated $8,000. Today, organizers have to work to accommodate all those who are interested in participating. The Scramble has grown into one of the biggest fundraising golf events in the state and shows no signs of slowing down.
“I’m so proud of the golf committee,” says Jenny Brown, who leads Phillips 66’s Community Relations efforts in Bartlesville. “They all work tirelessly each year to ensure the Scramble is a success for our community.
“Our committee does this work on top of their day jobs, and their dedication to the cause is unmatched.”
During the evening sponsor reception this year, John and his family were honored for all they have done over the years. Among those celebrated were John’s wife Shallan, his children Avery, Austin, Addison and Ashton, his parents Ed and Shirley, his brother Ricky and his sister Julie.
Plans are already underway for next year’s Golf Scramble and accompanying evening sponsor reception. And, though they won’t be milestone events like this year’s 20th anniversary activities, the Scramble is sure to be a hit for those who take part as well as all those who benefit from the money it raises.
“We are so blessed to have Golf Scramble,” says Cary. “While it may have had humble beginnings, its heart was always in the right place. And now, it has blossomed into something truly special which helps a lot of organizations which assist those in need in our community.”
“We hit a hole in one with this event.”
A part of the Bartlesville landscape for nearly a century, the BRUW has a stated mission of “leading the fight to improve the health, education and financial stability of every person in our communities.” To learn more, please visit their dedicated website at www.bartlesvilleuw.org.