HDSA Golf Tourney Experiences Record Turnout

100-Plus Hackers Hit the Local Links to Support the Teller Sheriff’s Office

Trevor Phipps

Now that summer is right around the corner, the Teller County golf season has officially entered full swing.

Due to weather and a slate of improvements, the local golf course had somewhat of a delayed opening, but they have been open since the beginning of May.

However, Mother Nature has recently doused the area with daily rainstorms, which has put damper on local golf action. But if the rain ever does temporarily cease, the course is open every day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Last week, the Shining Mountain Golf Course in Woodland Park hosted one of its first major golf tournaments of the season. The annual Teller County Honorary Sheriff’s Deputy Association (HDSA) Golf Tournament took place last Friday.

Golfers at the tournament said that the day was filled with fun, and Mother Nature blessed the event with warm, sunny weather. The daily rains didn’t seem to have an effect on people getting out on the golf course as the tournament experienced, a record-breaking turnout.

“We had a great time and we had over 100 players,” Lieutenant Renee Bunting said. “I think we had 112 participants. They actually didn’t have enough golf carts so we had to go get our UTVs (Utility Terrain Vehicles). So, the deputies were able to fit four in each one. That’s the most we have ever had. Last year we had 88 players and that was the most we ever had.”

Bunting said that they had a slew of new players this year that wanted to come out and support the sheriff’s office. The tournament also got several new sponsors this year.

Glacier Electric sponsored the tournament for the first time. Fred’s Towing also came back to the tournament as a sponsor.

The tournament started at 7:30 a.m., but there were people coming as early as 6 a.m. to sign up. McGinty’s Wood Oven Pub in Divide provided over 100 breakfast burritos, which Bunting said were gone really fast.

After the tournament, the new chef at Shining Mountain provided a pasta and a taco bar for the hungry golfers. The tournament also included a silent auction as another source of fundraising for the HDSA which provides support to the sheriff’s office. In total the tournament raised over $19,000 for the HDSA which is the most they have ever benefitted.

During the tournament, a team led by Kirk Tolliver team snagged first place, Craig Thompson’s team came in second, and the Whalen team took third. Sergeant Eric Hellman earned the award for highest scorer and he won the bucket of balls from Shining Mountain.

The golf course is open currently for golfers every day, and people have the option to have private events there. The golf course sports many tournaments planned this season including the Woodland Park Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament on July 14.

The sheriff’s office is also planning to participate in a special tournament for first responders later this summer. On August 25, the First Responders’ Challenge will take place for the first time at Shining Mountain. The tournament will consist of nine holes for a $50 per person entry fee.

Bunting said that aside from the record-breaking attendance, another record was broken during the tournament this year.

“I do want to say, that the sheriff didn’t come in last place this year,” the lieutenant said. “And, that’s a first! Every year he has been in last place, so that’s huge!”