Monday, October 27, 2008

4th Annual Waeger Cup

The golf tournament was a huge success!! It was so good to see everyone – high school friends, college buddies, family friends, friends of friends, Meg’s family, my family and everyone come together. There were 108 golfers total and I know we raised lots of money!! ($$ totals will be updated later in the week…)

In the morning, Bobby, Lindsay, Holly, EJ, Meg and I were at the course early for registration. With my raspy voice, I tried to check everyone in, hand out “cancer sucks” buttons, and make sure golfers received their participant gift (green Waeger Cup t-shirts this year). While it’s not a lot of time and it always seems so rushed, I enjoy registration as it’s the ONLY time I actually get to see everyone, say hello, and thank those that show their support.

As for the rest of the day, I tried to take a little step back from managing the day to day minute details. My voice was still raspy and my energy level was probably at 75 percent. It still was above and beyond my expectations especially considering where I was a week ago. I really want to thank so many for helping. Meg led the day by thanking all the participants over the megaphone. With her heart on her sleeve, the few words that came out were perfect and just reminded us while we were all there.

My brother and his wife Lindsay get the award for traveling the furthest as they flew in from California just for the event. My brother handled the silent auction and raffle too which deserves a big thank you. For anyone that has ever run an event, know that it’s an overwhelming task, so I’m appreciative that I could float around and actually get to eat the steak dinner for the first time in four years! I want to thank the golfers that drove a long distance, the friends that came up to Meg to introduce themselves, my sister Patrice and all her friends that came to dinner, the Dorns and Lose families for all their help, etc. There are so many others I want to thank but I can’t mention everyone. However, I need to thank Mike Caporaletti, long-time friend and owner of Royal Oaks Golf Course, and his wife Angie for their work on this event. Talk about a family event, during dinner Mike is back in the kitchen cooking steaks while Angie is out there scooping beans and corn for people in the food line. Being in the service industry is sometimes tireless, but I know it wouldn’t be a success without their help.

The Waeger Cup has a lot of different meanings. For me, it was something I could do to turn a negative event in my life into something positive. It’s a date everyone puts on their calendars and counts down the days till tournament time. The past three years, I’ve always tried to educate my friends on cancer, the issues, the experiences, and life as a cancer survivor – even before the blog. I invite them to chemo sessions, email them when I’m struggling, and celebrate with them when times are good! This tournament, for me, is about helping others who can’t help themselves. It’s about raising money for people who need it. The Waeger Cup is really the Foundation’s only fundraiser and I know I’m going to be in the spotlight that day. However, last night, Tom Marshall and my other McDaniel College friends, put me in the spotlight in a way that I’m not accustomed to.

Tom Marshall and Justin Arpan held a fundraiser at Federal Hill Lounge in Baltimore the week prior. It just a short notice, they organized an event, had over 30 of our friends show up, and had the bar donate 10% of it’s earnings to my foundation. Overwhelmed by the support and cause, the bar owner upped the ante and did 20% for multiple nights. Justin and Tom presented the check and money last night at the Waeger Cup totaling $1120. Those that know me would say I enjoy being in the spotlight, but being presented with the money left me speechless. I quickly handed the microphone to my brother because I didn’t know what to say. As Meghan and I talked on the way home, it’s not about the money but inspiring my friends to care about a cause as much as I do and to care about something bigger than themselves. Thank you.

As for golf, my team came in 4th. Our secret weapon was missed, but the replacement held his own. I'm glad my friends, Stoney, Mini, Rip, and Charlie won. They were graceful in their victory, but know that I'm frustrated for not bringing home the trophy. Even when I'm not feeling 100%, I still can be competitive and frustated can't I? After all, Tiger Woods only wins 26% of the tournaments he enters. We'll get 'em next year...

Pictures and other details to follow...


Anonymous said...

Dan and Meg

The tournament was a great affair that demonstrated support for you and others like you living with the challange of cancer. See you on the course soon again.


Anonymous said...

I had a great time at the outing. It was really nice to see everyone. The dinner was delicious and thanks for all the effort you guys put out to make it so successful each year.