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Largest foundation golf outing ever raises more than $87,000

This year’s Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation Golf Invitational was one for the record books. A record 206 golfers teed off June 25 at The Country Club at Muirfield Village, raising more than $87,000 for foundation scholarships, grants and programs that enhance agricultural communities. The event raised almost $20,000 more than the previous year.

Fifty-two teams split between two flights competed against each other for low score and closest to average and individually for closest to the pin, longest drive and longest putt. Those who wanted to support the foundation but weren’t golfers attended a drink mixology class and joined the golfers for dinner. Nationwide was the invitational’s main sponsor.

2018-foundation-golf-strickler_webDuring dinner, two life-long supporters of the agricultural community were honored. Virgil Strickler has served as the longest-running general manager in the history of the Ohio Expo Center & State Fair and was inducted into the Ohio Agricultural Hall of Fame last year.

2018-foundation-golf-irwin_webAlso honored was Jim Irwin, employee benefits consultant andaccount manager for CBIZ Benefits & Insurance Services of Ohio, Inc. Irwin, who is retiring this month, has been involved with Ohio Farm Bureau since 1971.

Also featured was Jefferson County’s ChickQuest program, which received a $3,000 Foundation Action & Awareness grant to help it increase the number of third grade students learning about the life cycle of an embryonic chicken egg through scienOur 'Chicken Whisperers' at Wells Academy who were a huge help to the teachers (left to right)- Alivia Casinelli, Lucy Jo Saccoccia, Kylie Davidce, technology, engineering and math skills. Twice a year the foundation awards Agriculture Action & Awareness grants to small, community based service groups. This past grant cycle, $21,500 was awarded to eight organizations, of which five were county Farm Bureaus. The fall grant cycle opens July 1.

Foundation scholarship recipient Todd Peterson, an Ohio State University student majoring in agribusiness and applied economics, also was featured during the dinner. The foundation annually recognizes Ohio students for their academic effort, community engagement and career interests that link agriculture to community 2018-foundation-golf-peterson_webservice, education or scientific research. In the last round of funding, $34,000 was awarded to students who applied through the Darwin Bryan Scholarship Fund, the Women’s Leadership in Agriculture Scholarship Program, Foundation Scholar Award, Cindy Hollingshead Scholarship Fund, Jack Fisher Scholarship Fund and the Kenny Walter Scholarship Fund. The next foundation golf outing will take place June 24, 2019 at the Lakes Golf and Country Club in Westerville.

Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation’s next major event is Cultivating a Cure on Aug. 19 at Clardale Farms with American Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall the featured speaker. Learn more at cultivatingacure.org

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Amy Graves 

Amy Graves is a freelance writer from Franklin County.