Golf Ball Drop raises thousands for KVNH

KEENE VALLEY On a clear, sunny day in Keene Valley, it was raining golf balls. Several hundred numbered balls were dumped from high above the ground on July 12 as part of the first annual Golf Ball Drop to benefit the Keene Valley Neighborhood House, an assisted living home. For the past four months, volunteers had been selling golf balls, each of which represented a chance to win cash prizes. More than 1,300 balls were sold at a price of $10 each. Beth Davis, Development Coordinator for KVNH, organized the fundraiser in March as a way to sustain the care of seniors at KVNH who have very limited income. Davis said she got the idea from a friend who organized a similar project in another state. Many individuals and businesses contributed to the cause, donating prize money, golf balls, and other services. Anybody I asked for anything helped, said Davis. Friends, family, the town; everybody just jumped right on. The event itself drew about 100 people to Marcy Field where employees of A Cut Above Tree Service dumped the balls from over 40 feet in the air. With his ball being the first to find the hole, Travis Gagnon, a Keene native now living in Colorado, took the top prize of $2,000, donated by Burnham Financial. The $1,000 price for closest to the hole, donated by NBT Bank, was awarded to Susan Merle-Smith of Vermont, who donated the money to KVNH. Eileen Brewer of St. Augustine, Florida won the $500.00 prize for farthest ball from the hole, which was donated by Champlain National Bank. With sales of t-shirts and concessions added, the event collected more than $15,000 for KVNH, which sets aside eight to ten rooms for seniors whose only income is Social Security, Davis said. T-shirts from the golf ball drop are still on sale for $12 each or two for $20. For more information, contact Beth Davis at the Keene Valley Neighborhood House by calling 576-4474.

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