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Cypress Lake Golf Club members donate $20,000 to Harry Chapin Food Bank

Cypress Lake Golf Club’s four-day Drive Out Hunger Challenge raised $20,000 to help Harry Chapin Food Bank provide healthy meals to Southwest Florida families.

Held April 22-25, participating club members pledged a specific dollar amount for every stroke during their round of golf, making donations by cash or check after 18 holes. Director of Golf Jon Pazdera initially thought the challenge would raise $5,000, a goal that nearly was surpassed on the Challenge’s first day.

“Our members certainly stepped up to the challenge, but most importantly, they stepped up to help families in this community whose livelihoods are being impacted by the coronavirus,” Pazdera said. “I am challenging other golf clubs and residential communities in Southwest Florida to create their own fundraising initiatives. This is the time when those of us who have been fortunate can help our neighbors during a period of great economic need.”

The concept behind the Drive Out Hunger Challenge originated with club member Raul Pedraja, whose idea was met with widespread support among fellow golfers as a means to give back while enjoying a sport they love.

“It just shows the kind of golf course and golf club members that we have here,” said Pedraja, who was on-hand April 28 as Cypress Lake Golf Club presented a check to the food bank.

Harry Chapin Food Bank, which is helping to lead the community’s fight to end hunger, has set up drive-thru distribution sites throughout the community to assist local families. For every $1 donated to Harry Chapin Food Bank, the organization is able to use its purchasing power to buy $8 worth of food. Cypress Lake Golf Club’s donation equates to about 80,000 meals.

“It just goes to show you the power of people’s support for their neighbors in need,” said Greg Clancy, major gifts officer at Harry Chapin Food Bank. “Disasters and times like these seem to bring out the best in people.”

About Cypress Lake Golf Club

Located at 6767 Winkler Rd. in Fort Myers, Cypress Lake Golf Club is Fort Myers’ oldest and most historic private golf club, boasting three PGA hall-of-fame golfers (Patty Berg, Gene Sarazen and Herb Graffis) as founding members. Founded in 1959, the award-winning Cypress Lake Golf Club is one of the few golf courses in Southwest Florida where walking is encouraged all year long, a feature that perfectly complements the unparalleled beauty of the course. Members enjoy access to golf and tennis, a fully stocked golf pro shop as well as social and dining experiences at the clubhouse. For more information, please call 239-481-1333 or visit CypressLakeGC.com.

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