On September 19, 2022, the Inaugural Alumni Golf Tournament was held at nearby Piney Branch Golf Club. The event was organized by Gerstell alumni Nicholas Wilson '15, Jacob Betz '15 and Connor Eline '12. The fifty-seven participants, which consisted of Dr. Smith and his family, faculty, alumni, parents, students, and some friends, enjoyed near perfect weather conditions for an enjoyable afternoon on the links! Using a Captain scramble format, two teams finished the round with an 11 under par score. After using the computer-generated tie breaking system (going 11 holes until the tie was broken), Piney Branch’s resident golf pro declared the foursome of Danny Heflin, Steve Contrino, Mike Kahl and Dale Hacke our first place winners. Mr. Hacke also took home the prize for closest to the pin on hole #7. Ben Lukehart was awarded the prize for closest to the pin on hole #13, and Rick Estes (husband of faculty member Valerie Estes) won longest drive on hole #10. Alumni Mom's Mrs. Lisa Eline P'12, P'15 and Mrs. Janine Wilson P'15 generously shared their time with us and drove the beverage cart on the course for the golfers.
We would like to express a HUGE ‘thank you’ to all of our sponsors for the event – Atlas Restaurant Group (Eric and Alex Smith), H & S Family of Bakeries (Chuck Paterakis), JW & Sons, Inc. and East Coast Poured Floors (Scott and Nicholas Wilson '15), Drago Bands (Kyle Brooks), Republic of Athletes (Nick and Katie Schultz), Bestcare Luxury Assisted Living (Mr. and Mrs. Mike Best), Nature Unlimited (Nancy Mitchell), Gerstell Academy Board of Trustees (Dr. Frederick Smith), Pipers Wine and Spirit Barn (Rick Estes), Eline Funeral Homes (Steve and Connor Eline '12), REMAX Realty ( Mrs. Shari Hodges), Eline Monuments (Steve and Connor Eline '12), Petals, Flowers and Gifts (Lisa Eline), ABA Solutions (Holly and Jeremy Bennett), and PrintInk (Howard Nievod).
We would also like to express appreciation to Jeff Zachman, Emily Murphy, and the entire team from Piney Branch Golf Club for assisting us in making this event memorable for all. Thank you to Mr. Shane Stem, Gerstell Academy Director of Social Media, who joined us as our resident photographer for the day. Mr. Reji Samuel, Director of Information Technology, worked tirelessly behind the scenes, helping to keep our website updated with sponsorship logos and photographs, along with setting up our online registration procedures in connection with Ms. Carol Klauss and Mrs. Debby Troyer in our Business Office. Thank you!
Thank you to Dr. Smith for his support of this event along with his continued leadership. Thank you to Mr. Polasko for his assistance in building this event and joining us on the links with your encouragement and heckling. Also, thank you to Mrs. Jennette Baldwin, Gerstell Academy School Store, and to Mrs. Lynda Valedon, Gerstell Academy Parents Association President, for donating prizes for the day.
The largest THANK YOU goes to all of our golfers that joined us for this inaugural event! You made the event the success it was! The enthusiasm, perseverance and energy made the day so much fun!
We are already looking forward to our 2nd Annual Alumni Golf Tournament. Watch for a save-the-date coming soon!