If there are two sports that go hand-inhand it’s golf and tennis. The polo shirts, beautiful weather, the strategy, the strokes and the swings; they have their similarities. Most versatile tennis players have even improved their golf game by practicing tennis and further utilizing the strategy of weight transference and pivoting.
Place these two sports into an annual tournament for, a wonderful cause with, some great food and family time and what do you get? The Alper JCC 22nd annual Grand Tournament.
Every year, golfers jam the course and the tennis courts filled with competitors battling it out. But these aren’t your regular sports enthusiasts, these are individuals representing corporate and professional community leaders in South Miami-Dade helping to raise scholarship funds for the Dave and Mary Alper Jewish Community Center on the Jay Morton- Levinthal campus.
The golf tournament took place on April 24 at the stunning Crandon Park golf course on Key Biscayne, 6700 Crandon Boulevard known for the breathtaking views of the bay. The weather was what one would expect – warm with a beautiful spill of sunny sky blue overhead save for a couple puffy white clouds. The check-in desk was filled with large goodie bags and there were auction items that included authentic sports memorabilia such as such as a signed Miami Heat basketball and and some Florida State University items and numerous golf collectibles. by the food area, which featured someParticipants enjoyed delicious food from sponsors Roasters & ‘N Toasters and Papa John’s Pizza.
Parked on the field green was a pearly white 2015 Lexus IS 250 from presenting sponsor Lexus of Kendall. Either a 27- month lease on the car or the cash value was slated to go to the first partaker golfer to nail a hole-in-one.
Around the noon hour, the participants — who sold out this tournament — boarded about 80-something golf carts and shuttled over to the first tee for a shotgun start. Häagen-Dazs provided some much-needed ice cream, too delicious to not risk getting a Miami brain freeze as the beautiful weather lasted the entire tournament. The fun wrapped up with by 5:30 p.m. tThe closing awards reception played on as everyone enjoyed the buffet supper of which included some delicious tapas. And while nobody drove off in the Lexus this year, many won raffle prizes, restaurant gift cards, promo items, wine and more. – all things that will definitely get some good use.
The tennis tournament took place the following month on May 5 at the Dave and Mary Alper Jewish Community Center. Directed by Jane Foreman, more than 40 women participated in another sold-out tournament this year. As it was for the golf tournament, the weather was sunny and beautiful, with three hours of action-packed tennis worthy of a television crew.
Chef Paulette Bilsky was on site providing lunch to fuel both competitors and spectators. The tournament concluded indoors with a silent auction, exciting prizes, trophies for the winners and finalists, and a much needed post workout meal and drinks. Grand Tournament participants were not the only winners. In total, from this tournament alone, approximately $25,000 was raised to help continue the support of the JCC community. From the tiniest tots in preschool, boys and girls in summer camp and after-school activities, children and young adults with cognitive or developmental disabilities in our special needs program and seniors who participate at the Center, the Alper JCC provides over $250,000 in scholarships to more than 275 families regardless of race, religion or gender. The demand for these services increases every year.
Through another successful Grand Tournament, we have made significant gains for the JCC Scholarship Fund, all the while having a great time. Many thanks to our participants and sponsors. cliché as it soundsWithout them you none of this is possible. To see a list of winners for both tournaments, go to www.alperjcc.org. Stay healthy, Miami.