In my previous post I wrote about my desire to throw an epic party. Even though the Belton BBQs are nothing crazy or over-the-top, the part that I find epic is that the people they invite are from all parts of their family’s life. This year I sat across the table from Marc’s personal trainer and to my left was Alicia’s high school buddy who also moved from Chicago to MN and to his left was the dad of their son’s soccer buddy. The list goes on. Picture all of us gathered at tables with the common thread being the Belton Family. A view of the lake is the back drop while the kids are in the pool swimming under the watch of hired life guards so the adults can mingle. The food is delicious! A potpourri of side dishes and desserts which is potluck style and the hosts provide the main dish, BBQ, plus some home cooked Thai food. Meanwhile a band, which is made up of only guests, plays jazz inside the house. What I admire most about this evening is that the Beltons get to see all their friends and family in the lovely setting of their home. This opportunity to stay in touch also serves as insurance that in case our paths do not cross any other time during the year, there’s a good chance we will all be back next year to reconnect at another BBQ. That’s my type of epic.
The Belton family tradition of having an annual BBQ is ten years strong and it coincides with the Trotter golf tournament. I’ve learned that the tournament name, Trotter, was coined from a southern term for pig’s feet and Marc wanted to organize a tournament that had “soul” (sole). The evolution of this tournament began after years of playing golf with Marc’s dad whenever he came for his visits to MPLS. They parlayed the sport into a way to raise money for One Village Partners in Sierra Leone. Soon after, the golf tournament included women even though most were just learning how to play. In order to take the pressure off, the women would just pick a winner before they even played and just had fun. The female participation has evolved because Alicia added the opportunity for spa treatments before the tournament. This is her way of not doing the tournament “stuff” in the morning and instead, it allows her to spend time with everyone who is playing. Marc and Alicia raise $10,000 a year (for 10 years) for One Village Partners. A thoughtful pinch for sure!
Speaking of golf…A couple of weeks ago I played in a golf open that benefitted my kids’ school. My experience consisted of once golfing 9 holes. So to say that I was extremely nervous is an understatement. Not only because my friend who invited me to play is very competitive but I had never before golfed a full round. EVER. If I’m not good at something I usually shut down. But I took a deep breath, felt the encouragement and believed that I could keep up. And then it rained. Not just sprinkles, down pour. We drove straight to the club and waited for the tournament to be over. I still never finished 18 holes but our foursome won! Who cares if it was because we were the only all-female team and that was a category? What I felt best about was that I stepped up and tried something I never tried before and it wasn’t that bad. I must say that it truly depends on the company you keep at the golf course because that could’ve been UGLY. I’m thankful that my friend was thoughtful enough to invite me because she provided an opportunity to step out of my comfort zone. She could have picked anyone and she picked me.
At all of these tournaments they give out swag. Bags of sponsored tees, some cool golf balls, maybe a towel or a ball marker etc. In addition to those pinches, our bag included a book that I am enjoying so far. I have an idea for another great thoughtful pinch to put in those golf goody bags. Calling all entrepreneurs …How about a DVD of some golf pros using humor to teach beginners like me the rules and etiquette of golf? You know, like on the Delta flights they changed the boring video at the beginning of each flight. At first they used some hot flight attendant but now they use a funny video for all the safety rules and regulations. Humor works which is why most ads in the Super Bowl are hilarious. However, until someone comes up with a fun way to learn golf, this book will have to work.
I’m taking another swing at actually completing 18 holes tomorrow. The guys I’m playing with “won” a round of golf that I donated for a fundraiser that raises money for Alzheimers. The round garnered $1000. I figure it will be tough because these guys play regularly, but I’m not too worried. Instead, I’m just glad that I was able to help in some way for a cause that is dear to another friend’s heart. The sport of golf can provide so many thoughtful pinches for so many important causes. Who can resist all of those dimples?