All Donnie Rakes wanted for Christmas was to collect more canned food donations through the annual disc golf tournament he organizes than last year — “to blow it out of the water” — he said.
It appears Rakes has gotten his wish.
The Third Annual “Feeding the Hungry” tournament hosted by the Surry County Disc Golf Club was held Saturday at the Armfield Civic Center.
About 85 participants gathered 1,504 pounds of food and $206 for the Helping Hands Foundation of Surry County.
That’s well up from the 550 pounds from the 2014 tournament.
In a word, it was “awesome,” Rakes said. “We were expecting a lot but I didn’t think we’d get that. It’s the best we’ve done so far.”
A disc golf tournament is played similarly to ball golf. Players throw discs at “holes” made of baskets on poles, and the player with the fewest throws wins. Just don’t call it a Frisbee.
Rakes founded the club in 2013 and the first canned food drive tournament was held that year.
Now with about 50 active members, the tournament is a chance to raise interest in the sport while giving back to the community that supports it.
“We’re really happy with how the event went,” Rakes said. “It was beautiful weather and everything went smoothly.”
Rakes said the folks at Helping Hands were pleased with the donations.
“I think they were really tickled with it,” he said.
And players were happy for all the prizes provided by sponsors such as the Mount Airy Chick-Fil-A, ProHealth, Disc King, Innova Disc Golf and Discstore.com.
“We appreciate the countless sponsors we had to donate towards our tournament,” Rakes said. “I think everyone walked away with something.”
Some players had traveled from Charlotte to participate in the tournament.
“We’re all kind of a family,” Rakes said.
“We’ve got food on the table and a roof over our heads. We’re blessed to be able to come together that way.”
In the pro division, Nathan Hodges won first place, Landon Mummert, second and Antony Gonzalez took third.
In the intermediate division, Matt Hawks won first place, Jordan Beaver, second and Chase Dickens, third.
In the amateur division, Chad Pulsfort won first place, Kevin Lafferty, second and Ryan Deavers, third.
In the masters division, Dennis Wilson, won first place, Jim Hysmith, second Chris Piteo, third.
In the grand masters division, Henry “Bear” Griffin won first place, Roger Raasch, second and Matthew Aloi, third.
In the ladies division, Candace Hawks, first, Ashley Hogan, second, and Chris Rakes, third.
For a dollar, players could enter the “ace” pool. (An “ace” is a disc golf hole-in-one.) Any player who threw divided the pool, which was won Saturday by Jordan Beaver, who won $51.
Three discs autographed by professional players were also auctioned off.
Tyler Grubbs won the Will Shusterick and Valerie Jenkins discs.
Jeanne Weeks won the Joshua Childs disc.
“We appreciate all the players who came out for the tournament,” Rakes said.
The club plans on hosting a membership drive tournament in late February.
Reach Terri Flagg at 415-4734.