13th annual tournament in is support of the fight against cancer and all proceeds stay in Routt County.
Photo by John F. Russell
Ruth Golden attempts to make a putt during the 13th annual Rally for the Cure golf tournament at Rollingstone Ranch Golf Club. She was joined by teammates, from left, Philamena Baird, Krista Moser and Diane Van Matre.
Photo by John F. Russell
Bruce Hannon hits out of the sand at the 13th annual Rally for the Cure golf tournament at the Rollingstone Ranch Golf Club.
Steamboat Springs Jan Fritz isn’t what most people would call an avid golfer, but every July, she puts on her finest pink clothing and makes an appearance at Rollingstone Ranch Golf Club.
“It’s the power of pink,” she said about the 13th annual Rally for the Cure golf tournament. “I really considered playing this year, but I went out to the driving range a few days ago and decided that I wasn’t ready.”
Despite never taking a swing in the annual fundraising tournament, Fritz is a hard hitter in the battle against breast cancer in Steamboat Springs.
The registered nurse is the director of cancer services at Yampa Valley Medical Center. But on this day, she was volunteering her time as part of the committee representing the Yampa Valley Breast Cancer Awareness Project. Last year, the group received $22,000 from the tournament, which gives most of its proceeds to local organizations. A small portion per golfer goes to the national Rally for the Cure for sponsorship.
The money, along with funds from the Bust of Steamboat fundraiser held in October, helped pay for mammograms, ultrasounds and other diagnostic treatments designed to catch breast cancer in the early stages when it can be treated most effectively.
“We don’t want women in Routt and Moffat counties putting off a mammography because of financial reasons,” Fritz said. “We want every woman to have the opportunity to have a mammogram.”
The group also aids patients and caregivers by paying for mileage, rooms and some treatments. It’s a huge resource for uninsured and underinsured people in Routt and Moffat counties dealing with the devastating impacts of breast cancer.
Fritz said the challenging economic climate has many women waiting to have mammograms. She said some of the guidelines from top medical institutions also have women confused about when they should have mammograms.
But Fritz warns women not to wait, especially if they have a family history of breast cancer, and she is thankful for events like Rally for the Cure that bring attention to the cause.
“We try to give the money we get back each year,” Fritz said. “We want to make sure that the money gets used and that it is used locally.”
Golf tournament organizer Linda Danter, who was dressed from head to toe in pink Tuesday, also wants to give back.
That’s why Danter and the women’s golf club she played with started the Rally for the Cure in Steamboat Springs 13 years ago.
Since then, the grass-roots tournament has continued to grow each year.
This year’s Rally for the Cure drew 232 golfers — a new record for the tournament — along with 111 hole sponsors.
“The number of participants is incredible,” Danter said. “We never had 232 golfers before.”
This year’s tournament also had great support from local businesses that stepped up to sponsor holes and donated more than 186 items for drawings.
“The money that we raise helps in the battle against breast cancer,” Danter said. “But so many of the people playing are coming together to participate because they want to help in the fight against the horrible general disease of cancer.”
Rally for the Cure golf tournament results
Mixed flight: 59
Jake Lauinger, Megan Quirch, Lauren Quirch and Mark Schroeder
Women’s flight: 61
Paula Stephenson, Linda Sobeck, Linda Stahl and Barb Simms
Men’s flight: 58
Jeff LaRoche, Blake Eddington, Brian Siegel and Ben Siegel