Along with the normal days of golfing at Ocala Palms (OP) Golf & Country Club, the OP Men’s Association (OPMGA) and the OP Ladies Association (OPLGA) like to have some fun and competitive rounds of play. Recently, the OPMGA held a competition between the Black Hats and the White Hats teams, aka the Ryder Cup Golf Tournament.

The captain for the Black Hats Team was OPMGA Tournament Director Dan Cole, and members on his team were: Warren Grund, Tom Hopkins, Allen Etzel, Pat VanAman, Jim Small, Dennis Noble, Joe Shelton, Larry Groth, Jim Elbaor, Buster Gamble, Bob Grygo, Mickey Wesnofske, Don Okunzzi, Wayne Kyker and Jerry Duva.

The White Hats Team Captain was Phil Jaffe, and members of that Team were: Andy Showerman, George Gay, Herb Blaylock, Vinson Willits, Ted Puhl, Bob Pantling, Duke Dotlich, Gunther Pontes, Rick Pace, Tom Defoe, Chuck March, Bob Reinhart, Chuck Curwick, David Leigh and Stan Misiaszek.

The Black Hats defeated the White Hats overall. The format for Day 1 was 18 holes of match play, and Day 2 was alternative shot on holes 1-9 and better ball of partners on holes 10-18.

The weather was perfect for the two days of competition, and the second day ended with delicious pizzas for lunch from San’s Pizzeria on Blitchton Road in Ocala.

Another day – and always a fun time on the golf course – is the semi-annual Big Cup competition. As you may have figured, the cup is about 8 inches in diameter and placed in unusual places on or near the green. This can be quite a challenge to putt the ball into the cup. Although the cup is not the normal size, if you are putting on a slope, either up, down, or across the green, it can be rather tricky to try to read the end result.

I do believe the organizers Winnie and Dan Cole have as much fun planning this event as well as playing in it.

Sixty participants shared many laughs, and overall it was a beautiful day. Eight winning four-member teams shared anywhere from $48 to $80, depending on the holes they won. Not too shabby winnings for a few hours of fun.

Remember, be safe, take care and smile!

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