ProAm fundraiser raises $137k; funds to help support heart hospital project

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Jerry Klobucar writes in a bid for an item in the silent auction at the 31st Annual Beloit Health System Pro Am held at the Beloit Club Monday. The silent auction featured 31 donated items ranging from art works to trip packages.

BELOIT — A clear day and some surprise donations pushed the funds raised at the Beloit Health System ProAm to a net amount of about $137,000.

The fundraising goal for the golf event at the Beloit Club was $125,000, but the generosity of the community helped organizers surpass the goal.

“We are thrilled and very humbled,” said Beloit Health System Foundation Director Lara Hermann.

Summer’s heat cranked down a few notches Monday to make a beautiful day for golf at the 31st Annual Beloit Health System ProAm.

A total of 96 amateur golfers were joined by 24 state golf pros for the golf outing, which also featured PGA pro William McKenzie who played one hole with all the golfers.

The event, which also offered a silent auction and dinner for about 210 guests, was a fundraiser for Beloit Health System to support the construction of the Hendricks Family Heart Hospital.

“Our community has a great heart for our heart hospital,” Hermann said.

The heart hospital, which is currently under construction on the fourth floor of Beloit Memorial Hospital, will include a hybrid cardiac cath lab/operating room, critical care patient rooms and other features. The heart hospital, which is expected to have a total cost of $13.8 million, is scheduled to be completed in 2017.

The silent auction at the event featured 31 items to match the number of years the ProAm has been held in Beloit. The items guests could bid on included paintings, vacation getaways and other items that were donated for the auction to raise money for the cause.

The golfers seemed to enjoy the sunny day of play and the opportunity to get a few tips from the golf pros.

“It was a wonderful day. I saw some really good shots, but no holes in one,” Hermann said.

Local car dealerships Bud Weiser Chevrolet-Cadillac, Bryden Motors and Finley-Dencker Buick-GMC, sponsored the hole-in-one contest, offering a $10,000 prize to anyone who could sink a hole-in-one on a par 3 hole.

Also, Culver’s of Beloit sponsored the Putt for Cash contest, which also offered a $10,000 prize to one lucky golfer who could make a 50-foot putt.

Tom Finley’s name was drawn to try his luck at the putt for cash, but luck was not with him on Monday as his putt went a little wide. He said it was fun to try anyway.

Hermann said the turnout for dinner was one of the best the event has had in its 31-year history. She said the Beloit Club, which was remodeled and expanded when Diane Hendricks purchased the former Country Club of Beloit, offers more room for dinner guests.

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