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Registration key for UNC Dance Marathon Homecoming Golf Classic

Chairs push for 100 participants

Dancers gather in a circle to watch a slideshow of a retrospect of the entire day.
Dancers gather in a circle to watch a slideshow of a retrospect of the entire day.

Advance registration is now open for the only event this year truly working “fore” the kids.

The UNC Dance Marathon Homecoming Golf Classic is ringing in its fifth year as the only full tournament that donates proceeds to the North Carolina Children’s Hospital.

On Friday, October 29, Durham’s premiere golf club, The Preserve at Jordan Lake, will be filled with what Dance Marathon hopes will be a record number of participants.

Publicity Chair Rebecca Brenner said the Dance Marathon team’s efforts to garner registrations were extensive.
“We’ve had just over 50 participants for the past few years,” Brenner said. “This year we are trying to register 100 participants.”

The team is hoping to register those players through a call-a-thon and by contacting the 80,000-person football listserv, said Olivia Murphy, the alumni relations chair for Dance Marathon. They are also reaching out to area businesses and players from the past two years.

Golfers will begin to tee off at noon following a 10:30 a.m. registration. Teams are organized in groups of four, though groups with less are welcome to sign up and play with others.

The event will benefit Dance Marathon’s “For The Kids” campaign, which raises money to assist patients and families at the North Carolina Children’s Hospital.

At each of the course’s eighteen holes, there will be a “For the Kids” story detailing Dance Marathon’s effect on specific patients and families. “We really want to make sure the tournament reflects our passion for the patients and families at the N.C. Children’s Hospital,” said Brenner.

The stories are there to keep the golfers connected to the cause, said Murphy. Knowing that they are helping others makes the game more enjoyable.

“I really wanted more about Dance Marathon out there,” said Murphy. “There was nothing for the golfers. There was nothing there telling them what they’re doing, which is what the ‘For The Kids’ stories are about.”
Participants range from family members of patients to students and alumni. “It’s sort of a mix,” Brenner said. “We want people from all walks of life.”

Murphy was optimistic about getting the 100 participants signed up. “We’re targeting students mainly through an interfraternity challenge,” she said.

John Scotton, a senior business major and member of the Chi Psi fraternity, has participated in the past and will play this year as well. His fraternity plans to enter two or three golf teams, said Scotton.

Scotton said the tournament is a treat for students because the golf course is highly ranked. “It’s a different venue for students,” he said. “It’s overall just a great time.”

Brenner agreed. “Even people who go there and don’t golf or don’t expect anything from it really enjoy it,” she said. “It’s a great way to reach an audience that we might not reach through other events.”

The event’s benefits reach farther than just those in the Children’s Hospital—participants receive everything from shirts to meals to a chance to win a Porsche Boxster. The course also features prizes at all par-3 holes.

Registration for the tournament costs $100 (of which $50 is tax-deductible), and student tickets cost $75.

Included in the registration fee is a Chick-Fil-A lunch and a post-tournament dinner held at The Preserve’s clubhouse at 6 p.m.

Extra dinner tickets can be purchased separately for $15, which includes entry to the raffle.

Though rumors about a patient attending the tournament were circulating, Brenner said the plan fell through.

“We actually have not confirmed a child from the hospital coming to the tournament,” she said. “Hopefully in future years we can get a patient or family lined up to come to the tournament.”

Proceeds from the golf tournament supplement Dance Marathon’s yearlong fundraising efforts. The total amount raised is kept tightly guarded until the much anticipated reveal at Dance Marathon itself.

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Murphy said the main goal this year is numbers, both in participants and money raised.

“I hope for numbers in sponsorships and golfers and students,” she said. “The more people there are, the more money we’re raising for the cause and the more exposure Dance Marathon gets.”

“If it could not rain, that would be great too,” she said.

Contact the University Editor at udesk@unc.edu.