Y raises $12K, gets return visit from Wooten at Invitational

Merv Wooten was just glad to be back, “glad to be seen,” he said at last week’s 2012 McDonald’s Merv Wooten Invitational Golf Tournament.

“Straight down the fairway,” said a member of his foursome after his tee shot on the first hole at the Waynesboro Country Club, which hosted the Waynesboro Family YMCA fundraiser.

Wooten, the former executive director of the YMCA, launched the event back in the 1980s from a series of conversations with golfing buddies who wondered what they might be able to do for the Y by getting local golfers to take part in a golf fundraiser.

That first Y golf tournament raised about $700 for the Y. This year, the McDonald’s Wooten Invitational raised more than $12,000.

“All the money goes to scholarships for kids who can’t afford to use the Y. That’s why the Y is very close and dear to me. I was down this week watching summer basketball camp. Just watching those kids, boy, it makes what we do here to raise a little bit of money to help them, it makes it all worthwhile,” Wooten said.

Wooten missed last year’s tournament after having suffered a heart attack that put his life in jeopardy just before the tournament date. He was able to talk to golfers last year as he recuperated bedside through a phone hooked up to a loudspeaker.

“I got to say a little bit to them before they teed off,” said Wooten.

Wooten’s successor in the top job at the Waynesboro Y, Jeff Fife, remembers the little bit of what Wooten had to say.

“He told the field last year, I’m going to be back. I’m going to play next year. And here he is,” Fife said.

To Fife, having Wooten back in the fold for the 2012 McDonald’s Wooten Invitational was icing on the cake.

“It’s an opportunity for us to celebrate the accomplishments of Merv Wooten as well as raise some funds for those kids and families who normally couldn’t afford Y programming. So we’re as much excited about the funds that we can raise to help families as we are just to have Merv here and swinging a golf club in his own tournament,” Fife said.


First Place Low Gross: Frontier Community Bank (Alan Sweet, Seth Bokelman, Tom Austin, Chris Chamberlain)

First Place Low Net: Southern Stainless (Jeremy Barb, DJ Seamster, Clay Rankin, Larry Rouse)

Second Place Low Gross: RAHE/McDonalds and Weaver Insurance (John Opstad, Jason Opstad, Chad Hatter, JR Showalter)

Second Place Low Net: BD&E #2 (Tom Sheaffer, Robert Gabler, Joe King, John King)

Third Place Low Gross: Nelson Country Boys (Bobby Johnson, Scott McGarry, Tim Crawford, Chip Lundy)

Third Place Low Net: First Bank & Trust (Jim Hyson, Richie Martin, Wayne Ryan, & Guy Wright)

Longest Drive off the 6th Tee: Josh Deaver (338 yards)

Closest to the Pin on the 14th: Frank Carey (donated the TV back to the Y)

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