WOW! What great support!
I have participated in event’s where good money has been raised for great causes…this one hit close to home as it started with care for Ernie and Liezl Els’ son, Ben, years ago and now sees that 100’s of children benefit!
On Tuesday night before the Autism Day, Nico V Rensburg, Thinus, Christo, Liezl and I braaied and shared some great stories about our 25 years together. We laughed for hours.
Before the auction, on paper, it looked like we could achieve up to R80 000 for the charity from entry fees and auction items. Well, two hours later … R176 000!
This is what I sent to my department heads after the Els for Autism Day
because I was soooo proud of the effort!
When I walked into the kitchen last night to thank the team for a great dinner, I really had a tear in my eye. The massive effort to serve a great dinner with great service (from all who helped to get it all out) followed another great day of golf on a course that is truly world-class.
That what it was – a world-class effort by the entire Links team – right down to Pietie who started early and made two staff deliveries last night.
Yesterday’s success on our part led to another massive fundraising result from our guest’s part. Nico van Rensburg, representing Ernie Els and Els for Autism will certainly be sharing our great story with Ernie and with golfers wherever he travels.
There is nothing more satisfying than knowing we did our best and our best was better than the rest!
Keep it up with every opportunity you (and we) have to shine and impress! Start with a smile!
Ernie with son Ben – Photo from website Ernie for Autism
Colin (Watt) shared his thoughts
Close on 100 golfers gathered at St Francis Links last Wednesday in support of the Els for Autism Golf Day and what a successful day it turned out to be. But it was not only about golf for the prize giving dinner was certainly an eye opener as to the generosity of the St Francis community and those who travelled from around the Eastern Cape to compete in the event.
Similar events have been held at golf courses around South Africa and will continue to be held throughout the year but to date, none have raised as much for the Els for Autism as our little village in a single event. Now it must be said from the outset much of the success must be attributed to Jeff Clause who, if he ever decides to give up is job at St Francis Links, would certainly be able to find work as an auctioneer. In fact, other than that the local community was in a giving spirit it would not surprise if Jeff was one day able to get blood out of a stone so persuasive is his auctioneering style.
The evening hosted by Jeff who knew the young Ernie playing at Fancourt before his rise to fame as a professional golfer, was filled with wonderful anecdotes told by both Jeff and Ernie’s close friend Nico van Rensburg who oversees the Els for Autism events in South Africa. Some interesting facts on just how great a golfer Ernie is, being also revealed and most interesting was that whilst he may not have achieved as many major titles as Tiger Woods he holds the record for the most consecutive weeks inside the Top-10 of the Official World Golf Ranking (758 weeks between 19 June 1994 and 11 January 2009).
But the evening was not all about the antics of the young Ernie and a video presentation featuring Ernie and his wife, Liezl truly told the story about what the evening was really about. A moving story and we hope you will take time to watch this video for who knows you may one day have someone close to you who will have to face the challenges of an autistic child. A highlight of the evening was a recorded telephone call from Ernie thanking those who participated in the day’s event.
It would be amiss not to mention the dinner we were treated to for Chef Brad certainly pulled out all the stops for this wonderful evening. The 3-course meal was as good as I have enjoyed in St Francis and the Asian Seafood Trio of prawn pot sticker, seared tuna and oyster tempura served with a teriyaki sauce and fruit Vinaigrette was quite outstanding as was the Beef Fillet and Lindt Hot Chocolate Fondant. And the service of serving over a 100 guest with plated courses too ran as smoothly as the ‘Big Easy’s” swing.
Thanks for a great evening St Francis Links!
In closing, some words from Ernie
“Years from now people may remember me as a golfer and a major champion. But I’d like also to be remembered as somebody who took the issue of Autism and did something with it. The rest of my life, I’ll be fighting this thing…I hope you’ll join with me”.
The US OPEN starts on Thursday!
Our 2nd Nicklaus Champion of Champions Qualifier!
On Saturday, the 18th, you get your 2nd chance to post a score for this year’s year end championship at Serengeti. We will have 6 Qualifiers this year, with your best 3 scores counting – so, make a plan!
Saturday, April 9 (The Masters)
Saturday, June 18 (US OPEN)
Sunday, July 17 (the OPEN Championship)
Saturday, July 30 (The PGA Championship)
Saturday, August 6 (the Olympics)
Saturday, September 24 (The TOUR Championships)
ORDER OF MERIT- BEST THREE SCORES FROM SIX (PLAY A MINIMUM OF THREE EVENTS)
The Top FOUR point-getters from their best THREE qualifiers will represent St Francis Links at Serengeti!
Entry Fee: R75 per event
Proudly Sponsored – ITEC SOLUTIONS will be our sponsors for OPEN Wednesday (2nd Wednesday) with meat and added prizes. Invite your friends to enjoy SA’s best with special rates for golf, snacks after the game and great prizes – Hey, Curry Night follows – stay or take away!
March (every Tuesday) – 10am Coffee Break for our lady members
June 15: ITEC OPEN Wednesday
June 18: Nicklaus Champion of Champions – No. 2
June 19: Father’s Day
June 25-27: National Order of Merit (juniors)
June 29-30: EP Seniors (72 players)
ST FRANCIS LINKS “MAJORS” AND “SPECIAL EVENTS” FOR 2016
Note the NEW Dates for 2016:
April 9: 1st Qualifier for the Nicklaus Champion of Champions
April 23-24: Club Championships, Sean Botha and Janine VD Merwe, repeat Champions
May 29: Interestate Challenge at Mossel Bay (4th from 7)
June 4: Ladies 10th Annual Invitational – Helen Bridges and Jean Fynn, Champions
June 18: 2nd Qualifier for the Nicklaus Champion of Champions
July 9: Sanlam Cancer Challenge – SFL Qualifier
June 26: Inter- Estate Challenge at Oubaai
July 15-17: Men’s Invitational – Special NEW Friday event and Shoot-out
Proud Sponsors of the Ladies OPEN Weekend and the ANNUAL
July 17: 3rd Qualifier for the Nicklaus Champion of Champions
July 30: 4th Qualifier for the Nicklaus Champion of Champions
July 31: Inter-Estate Challenge at Goose Valley
August 6: Ladies’ Invitational
August 6: 5th Qualifier for the Nicklaus Champion of Champions
August 8-23: Spring Programme – Course and Clubhouse Closed
August 21: Sanlam Cancer Challenge FINALS
August 21: Inter-Estate Challenge Simola
September 24: Final Qualifier for the Nicklaus Champion of Champions
September 25: Inter-Estate Challenge at St Francis Links
September 30, October 1-2: Links Cup
October 30: Inter-Estate Challenge at Pezula
October 30-November 6: Vodacom Origins of Golf FINALS (Sunshine Tour – course Closed)
November 19-20: Pam Golding Ladies OPEN Weekend
November 25-27: Nicklaus Champion of Champions (Serengeti)
November 27: Inter-Estate Challenge FINALS at Pinnacle Point
December 9-11 – 10th Year Anniversary Activities (watch this space)
2016 International Events
US Masters – Augusta National, Georgia – April 7-10 – Danny Willett, Champion
US Open – Oakmont CC, Oakmont, Pennsylvania – June 16-19
Open Championship – Royal Troon, Ayrshire, Scotland – July 14-17
US PGA – Baltusrol (Lower Course), Springfield, New Jersey – July 28-31
The Ryder Cup – Hazeltine, Minnesota – September 30 to October 2
I think this will be an awesome read!
Dale Hayes says he has ticked another “Bucket List” wish off!
Every Great shot starts with a SMILE
The St Francis Links Team