After a one-year hiatus, Local 1886 held their 5th Annual Golf Tournament to benefit Guide Dogs of America and Tender Loving Canines on June 25. Golfers were eager to sign up, and the event sold out in 6 weeks.

141 Report: Local 1886 Golf, Smoke, BBQ Events Support GDA

Jul 2, 2021

Dave welcomes back John Martinez, President of Local Lodge 1886 in Denver, Colorado, to talk about their most successful charity golf tournament ever. Has your local lodge considered organizing a charity event? Watch this video!

After a one-year hiatus, Local 1886 held their 5th Annual Golf Tournament to benefit Guide Dogs of America and Tender Loving Canines on June 25. Golfers were eager to sign up, and the event sold out in 6 weeks.

Brother John Martinez shares the planning process and gives a step-by-step timeline and organizing tips on putting together a big event for charity. He stresses the importance of starting early, at least six months in advance, to line up sponsors and get the word out. John and his team of volunteers led by Rich Pijanowski, Frank Gagliano, and Ken Cardoso began meeting via Zoom in November 2020, unsure about whether they could resume their annual event.

They received an enthusiastic response to their initial solicitation for sponsors. The early start paid off: they collected over 140 gift donations for raffles and cash to underwrite the event’s costs. 

With 144 golfers signed up to play and the main event sold out, event organizers scheduled a BBQ lunch at the airport to raise funds a week before the golf tournament. Volunteers donated all the food and supplies, allowing members to show off their cooking and smoking talents. That event also raised awareness about the extraordinary work GDA does and the vital role the Machinists Union plays in their support. 

As expected, the food sold out quickly. “We didn’t realize how hungry ramp service, flight attendants, and customer service people could be,” said John, pledging that the Smoke and BBQ lunch would also become an annual event. 

After covering all costs, Local 1886 presented $17,000 to Guide Dogs of America and Tender Loving Canines, the largest donation in the local’s history.

John and the team of volunteers are not resting and look forward to repeating their success next year. Save the date for the 6th Annual Local 1886 Charity Golf Tournament on June 24, 2022.