From left: Erin Lobato - FES parent and golf committee co-chair, Julie Ryan - FES PTA treasurer/former PTA President, Meralee Fredenburgh - FES parent and golf committee member, Ken Junge - CRES Principal, Sara Harper - GFES Principal, Todd Franklin - FES principal, Lisa Cuomo - CRES parent and golf committee member, Meredith Broome - GFES parent and golf committee member, Barbara Morehouse – golf committee co-chair, Kristin Dailey - GFES parent and golf committee member, Children - current students. Not pictured, golf committee members: Diane Emery (CRES), Larisa Caicedo DeThero (GFES), Julie Rothmeijer (FES), Maryellen Moline (FES), Matt Matay (GFES).
Photo by Adrienne West/The Connection
With the swing of a golf club, the annual Celebrate Great Falls Foundation Golf Tournament (CGFF) exceeded its goal and raised $39,000, thanks in part to a generous donation from the hosting venue, Hidden Creek Country Club in Reston. The golf committee was able to present each of the three Great Falls elementary schools with a check for $13,000. The principals from each school want to extend thanks to CGFF and the community:
“We thank Celebrate Great Falls, its sponsors and our school communities for their continued support for our teachers and schools. Their contribution will directly impact student learning and is a testament to what can happen when schools and communities share a common focus and commitment to education,” said Kenneth Junge, Colvin Run Elementary (CRES) principal.
“The statement ‘It takes a village’ rings true when we consider the wonderful contributions of the annual Great Falls golf tournament to our schools. The support and collaboration between our families, school staff, and community highlight how very fortunate our students are to attend school in Great Falls. At Great Falls Elementary (GFES), we plan to use the funding to continue to provide innovative and engaging learning experiences for our students – including technology enhancements; a hands-on science lab, and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) initiatives,” said Sara Harper, Great Falls Elementary School (GFES) principal
“As an administrator for more than 13 years in this community, I am always so grateful for what the families do for our students and our schools. Working with such a supportive PTA and knowing that we are all doing what we can to provide our students with the instructional opportunities and resources to be successful is what makes each school year a successful experience. [We are excited at the possibility of updating laptops in] our classrooms, in addition to other instructional materials. All of us here at Forestville (FES) want to thank each member and volunteer associated with the Celebrate Great Falls Foundation and our parent community for their constant energy and support and providing us with additional funding to meet the needs of our students,” said Todd Franklin, FES principal.
Founded in 1995, the tournament raised money for a number of local charities before adopting the local schools as the ongoing beneficiaries. Since 2012, the tournament has raised more than $150,000 for those schools. Erin Lobato, golf committee co-chair, gave acknowledgement to the volunteers that helped make the event such a success. “We cannot stress [enough] our appreciation for this committee’s hard work. [They] are the reason this was possible. We know [not everyone is able to return next year] so we wanted to specifically thank Diane Emery and Julie Rothmeijer for all their help the past couple of years. It has been a pleasure working with both of them and they will be missed. Another special shout out [goes to] Matt Matay and Barbara Morehouse for their incredible help the past 10 years. They have been an instrumental part of taking this tournament from a small but vibrant tournament, to the blockbuster fundraiser that it is today.”
New this year was the introduction of a kids' putting contest (sponsored by AOG Wealth Management) to involve the youngest golfers in the tournament. Kids and their families enjoyed a short putting lesson followed by the putting contest. The tournament wrapped in the evening with a BBQ dinner buffet.
For more information on CGFF and next year’s golf tournament, go to https://celebrategreatfalls.org/event/annual-charity-golf-tournament/.