Click here to listen to the radio interview of Clinton Hansen on April 12 regarding the foundation and the golf tournament.
Local golfers have a new opportunity to play for a good cause. Local nonprofit, the PlayForBurk Foundation, is hosting its first annual golf tournament benefiting special needs education on April 21 at Adams Golf Course.
All proceeds will be used to further special education programs in the Bartlesville and Dewey areas – purchasing specific supplies and educational tools needed.
cuts to public education in recent years, many programs do not have the funds to invest in new programs or supplies for their students. This is true for special education programs in local area schools.
“Both Dewey and Bartlesville have wonderful teachers that work with special needs children every day, but unfortunately, their budgets don’t always match their passion for these kids,” said Matt Lair, a parent who lives in Dewey.
Lair would know because he has a child in special education. He and his wife have a five-year-old son named Cason who has autism. He has seen how special education programs are unable to buy many of the supplies they would like to have.
“These are wonderful kids,” said Lair, “and they need good resources and supplies to help them learn to read, communicate, and interact with others. They need communication devices like iPads. The teachers want training programs to help better equip themselves for helping children with autism, and I would love to see them be able to get that.”
Lair has teamed up with the PlayForBurk Foundation hoping to help remedy some of these gaps for local special education. He and several of the PlayForBurk leadership have experience planning golf fundraisers, so it seemed a natural fit to plan a new tournament to benefit those with autism.
Participants in the new autism golf tournament will play in teams of four in a scramble format for the lowest score. Prizes will be awarded based on scores as well as specialty games on the course and through raffles.
“This will be a fun tournament to be a part of – both playing in it and volunteering,” said Randy John, who works with the PlayForBurk Foundation and has also been in charge of the annual Bartlesville Regional United Way Golf fundraiser for the last 13 years. “There will be lots of prizes, food/beverages, music, and good times. It will be great for avid golfers as well as those who are just out to have a good time while giving back to the community. We are building this tournament to last.”
Lair said the Tournament has already secured 22 teams, but there is still room for more for those who would like to enter. The cost to register a team is $400, which includes golfing, carts, lunch, snacks/beverages, and the chance to win prizes.
“I think it will be an event local golfers will not want to miss,” said John.
The tournament has also offered sponsorship and volunteer opportunities for individuals and businesses. A number of sponsorships have already been secured, but more opportunities are still available.
Clint Hansen, president of the PlayForBurk Foundation, said that the event organizers plan to ask special educators in Bartlesville and Dewey what their greatest program needs are and then use the tournament funds to fulfill as many of those needs as possible.
“I would like to see the life of at least one youth positively affected from our efforts,” said Hansen. “I know we will help many more than that, but life is truly about helping individual people. With this event, we hope to impact the lives of many of the local youth with autism and special needs.”
The PlayForBurk Foundation is a Bartlesville nonprofit organization created to carry on the legacy of Hansen’s son Burk after he passed away in 2015 at age 13. The foundation partners with local youth to promote service, faith, personal development and recreational opportunities for the betterment of themselves and their community.