Fred-Mark Golf Tournament Raises $15,000

It was a chilly day for golf but the warmth for Bridges of Hope was more than present from the 200+ golfers at the 22nd Annual Fred-Mark Charity Golf Tournament. Our staff & board members had the opportunity to greet golfers in the morning & serve them lunch in the afternoon. We also hosted a Closest to the Pin contest & a Silent Auction at dinner.lunchlunch tent staff

Sponsorships totaled nearly $10,000 and the golfers’ participation in the events of the day brought in another $5,000 for Bridges of Hope’s work with families in the Lakes Area.

This brings the 8-year grandbat winner & Jana total of funds raised at the Fred-Mark to over $80,000! Wow!

A great day was had by all and we are, again, so appreciative to Grand View Lodge for including us in this class act tournament! If you haven’t made your summer vacation or “stay-cation” plans yet, we highly recommend Grand View Lodge!

If you’re not a golfer, and running or walking is more your style, sign up for the Run for Hope which will take place next Saturday, June 15th in partnership with  Journey North Community Church.Run Logo

There are so many ways YOU help us build Bridges. Thank you!

Stay connected with Bridges of Hope…

Make a tax-deductible donation today.

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Golf Tournament Goal to Raise $20,000

The Fred-Mark Namesakes

Fred Boos & Mark Ronnei – Tournament Founders

Spring is here; let’s talk GOLF!

Our thanks goes out to Grand View Lodge for choosing Bridges of Hope, for the 8th year in a row, to benefit from the Fred-Mark Charity Invitational on May 27th and 28th! Over the past 7 years, the tournament has raised more than $65,000 for our important work with families.

THANK YOU to all who have sponsored the event, golfed in it or been a part of planning this fun event!

This year, our goal is to raise $20,000 which will go a long way toward helping those in need like Steven & Laura, Lily & Mae, and Rachel. Stories like these are made possible every day at Bridges of Hope thanks to YOU and our generous tournament sponsors:sponsors

On May 27th, more than 200 golfers will have the opportunity to help us raise funds by:

  • participating in a Closest to the Pin competition,
  • making a donation in exchange for lunch, and
  • bidding on the Silent Auction at dinner (click here to check out a preview).

If YOU would like to contribute to the success of the event, click here to make a tax deductible gift.

Thank you for helping us build Bridges! Happy spring!

Fred-Mark Charity Invitational Makes a Huge Impact

For the seventh year in a row, Bridges of Hope was the fortunate recipient of proceeds raised at the 21st Annual Fred-Mark Charity Invitational at Grand View Lodge. At the Tournament Dinner on Monday night, Fred Boos declared, “Bridges of Hope is the best organization serving the Brainerd/Nisswa area.” (We–humbly–agree…or at least would add ourselves to the list of great organizations serving this community!)

Fred & Mary Cutting the Ribbon

More than 230 golfers from all over Minnesota turned out for the two-day tournament, starting with 27 holes on Memorial Day, which was complete with a ribbon-cutting and capped with a dinner that included awards, games, a silent auction and recognition of donors & sponsors–all which benefited Bridges of Hope’s work with families in the Lakes Area. It’s always a great opportunity to share the message about our work, which impacts over 2,300 households every year.

The Fred-Mark Namesakes

Fred Boos and Mark Ronnei (pictured above) are the namesakes of the tournament and the principal driving force that caused the event to take on a charitable focus several years ago. The event on Monday broke records, raising over $20,000 for our work with individuals and families–and the cumulative total raised at this event over seven years is more than $65,000! The event has allowed us to make some great friends, both those who live in the area and those who spend most of their time in the Twin Cities. I always enjoy catching up with the Fred-Mark “regulars” at the clubhouse in the morning and at the dinner in the fabulous Gull Lake Center in the evening.

On the Green

We couldn’t pull this event off without wonderful sponsors and a fabulous committee. (Click here to see a listing of this year’s sponsors and how much the event has raised this year.) I’m so thankful to Bridges of Hope Board Member and this year’s Committee Chair, Kevin Littman, as well as the other hard-working committee members–Pat Sharbonda, Patty Baltz, Val Knudsen, Meghann Morris, and Tim Bauman.

The funds raised at this event are so important, as the demand for our services is 50% higher now than it was four years ago–and we continue to grow and expand into initiatives such as work with teen parents and a mentoring program for adults, it is more important than ever to have such great support from our community.

A BIG thank you to Fred, Mark, golfers and Grand View Lodge Staff for helping making our work possible!

Get Involved:

  • Make a gift in honor of the Fred-Mark Charity Invitational.
  • Talk to Michele about becoming a mentor for our Mentoring program, currently in development (email michele@bridgesofhopemn.org or call 218.825.7682).

Not in the Spotlight but a Rockstar Nonetheless

One of our positively stellar volunteers–someone who inspires you to want to write about them–clearly doesn’t do it for the notoriety. She’s definitely an “out of the spotlight” kind of person who I’m sure would never agree to being made a fuss over via blog post. So instead of asking her permission (just her forgiveness maybe), I’ve opted to share her story without sharing her identity. Some of you who know Common Goods well enough and cannot possibly be fooled will notice that I’ve taken more than a few liberties with some of the details, but the essence of this story is absolutely true….

It all started in 2009 when Common Goods was just getting up and running. Our volunteer (we’ll call her Mary) and her husband Don, both having recently retired, moved into the Lakes area from St. Paul. Mary, an avid golfer, had first been introduced to Bridges of Hope through our spring fundraiser–a golf tournament hosted by Grand View Lodge. She was inspired, hearing stories of families touched by Bridges, and made a point to introduce herself to the staff, asking about how she could become involved with the organization. Mary was delighted to learn about the plans to launch Common Goods, and throughout the summer she stayed in touch with the staff at Bridges of Hope about the progress of the store. In August, just prior to opening, Mary and Don stopped in at Common Goods to donate several boxes of clothing and housewares. Don joked with the staff about how glad he was to not be needing any of those ties or button-down shirts anymore.

Common Goods opened in September 2009, and the following week Mary signed on for her very first volunteer shift. And then she signed up to volunteer again the next week. And the one after that. And the one after that. And she soon became known as our Wednesday Morning Rockstar, with her own set of weekly tasks and projects.

Now, 100 weeks into the history of Common Goods, Mary has logged a total of 90 shifts–meaning she has been volunteering at the store for nearly every week of its existence! Don also comes in with Mary about once a month, helping with some of the light carpentry and repair projects around Common Goods. Together, the couple has given a (still increasing) total of over 350 hours at the store–Rockstar caliber indeed!

But that’s not really Mary at all.  She doesn’t like to have the spotlight shone on her as the center of attention; she doesn’t even want her picture taken when she’s volunteering at Common Goods. Don’t misunderstand: it’s not that Mary is quiet or shy–she just likes to come in, one morning each week, and do her thing–which is volunteering. Recently we were able to wrestle out of Mary why she has chosen to come in week after week: she said that she just likes being engaged with a nonprofit in a tangible way and enjoys the fun and friendly atmosphere at Common Goods.

A seemingly ordinary, simple answer, perhaps; but every week, in her very ordinary, simple way, Mary continues to make an extraordinary impact for families in the Lakes Area. And that is worth shining the spotlight on, if even for just a moment.

So thanks, Mary and Don. We would definitely be a different organization today without your hard work and dedication.

Interested in volunteering at Common Goods–and maybe even getting the chance to meet the now-famous “Mary”? Visit our website for details on how you can be involved.