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Guests "chip in" for Spring Creek Fundraiser
By Virginia Still

They made their way to Spring Creek Golf and Country Club with tote bags, chairs, blankets, and ice chests — all to celebrate 10 years of the Rhythm on the Range fundraiser in August. The ‘Black and White’ party began in the evening with the warm glow of the sun as guests selected an area on the green grass and set up camp. The annual celebration is a fundraiser to support the club’s “Team Creek” Junior Golf Program and a few local charities in Ripon.

There were an estimated 2,000 members and guests that attended the celebration with the majority sporting the black and white attire. All tickets to the event were purchased by members of Spring Creek. The party is 21 and older and guests were allowed to bring in their own wine, champagne, and food. However, those that didn’t bring edible items had the option of a few food trucks. Rustic Oven had a brick oven on site offering up freshly made pizzas. Doc’s Pit Stop served up pulled pork and tri-tip sandwiches, and Cecil’s Taste offered a variety of items like fried chicken, red stuff fries, west side veggies, street tacos and burgers.

A team of people make the event a success each year including Chairperson Patty Davis and the committee members, Karina Ilardi, Janelle Taylor, Jill Schemper, Kim Roland, Annette Schroen and Heidi Hawes, along with the staff at Spring Creek, guided by General Manager Steve Hupe.

“Every year we try to ramp up what we’ve done in the previous year,” stated Davis. “With it being our 10th anniversary, we decided to reach out for talent outside of the Central Valley, throughout the United States. With help from my committee, we discovered and then decided to bring in Emerald City Band from Plano, Texas.”

After originally narrowing the list down to three bands, Davis had the committee vote on which one would be selected and Emerald City Band came out as the winner.

Along with the band that entertained the guests throughout the night, Shutterbug Photo Camper was on hand to help guests capture the moment.

“Shutterbug Photo Camper was an addition that came to us three days before the event,” said Davis. “They offered to set up at no charge for the first time. This was such a fun added feature to the venue and we would definitely have them back.”

A silent auction had a variety of items to bid on like a round of golf with carts, wine baskets, exercise equipment, concert tickets, beauty baskets, and much more.

The event raised $50,000 for charity which will go to their main program, the Spring Creek Junior Golf. According to Davis, the Junior Golf program is designed to grow the game of golf by finding fun and exciting ways to engage junior golfers. The program will fund beginners to Division 1 college recruits. The program includes junior camps, monthly junior development programs, college prep programs, and individual as well as group lessons.

“We also fund an employee scholarship for those who are furthering their higher education while working at the Club,” added Davis. “I like to call it ‘Spring them Forward’. The rest of the funds are divided equally among four local charities which were recommended by the committee and presented to the Board for approval. This year’s recipient charities were: Love Ripon, Ripon Christian School, Ripon Community Fund and Ripon Community Athletic Fund.”

Plans for next year have already begun and the date of Aug. 10, 2019 has been set for the celebration.

“Everyone just seemed to settle in for an amazing night,” expressed Davis. “The weather was comfortable, and the atmosphere was really special. Everyone loved the band. Several people commented that they were the best band yet, and we’ve had some incredible groups over the past nine years, from all over. I’ve heard it said that this is one of the Valley’s premier outdoor music fundraisers, and it’s all on the beautiful grounds of Spring Creek Golf and Country Club.”

For more information, call Spring Creek Golf at 209-599-3258.