Latest Elk Citian Sports Updates
- Published on Friday, 01 June 2012 12:00
Oil and Gas Golf Tournament flourishing in 42nd year
Daily Elk Citian
Take the time to ask them, and one will find most golfers have taken part in a Thursday night scramble, or a company golf outing of some sort.
Those tournaments are commonplace all across the country.
But outside of club championships or professional events, it’s not quite as easy to find golf tournaments that have lasted almost a half-century. Such events require extensive planning, money, dedicated golfers, a dedicated community, and folks who are committed to the success of the tournament.
All those proverbial boxes can be checked off the Oil and Gas Golf Tournament’s list, which rolls out the carpet for golfers at Elk City Golf and Country Club this weekend for the 42nd time since it’s birth in 1971.
The late Gene Grubitz, a local furniture dealer in Elk City at the time, started the tournament in 1971 to help show appreciation for oil and gas companies in the area, which contributed so much to the local economy then, and now.
Leon Stuart, who has played on a team in the tournament since the very first year it started, said Grubitz was the ring leader for kicking off the event, along with the still-involved Elk City Chamber of Commerce.
“[Grubitz] was really instrumental in getting it started. He was one of the people who really ram-rodded [the event].”
In the 1980’s, when the oil play slowed to a near-halt, energy companies didn’t place “play in a huge golf tournament” in the yearly budget. If it weren’t for local businesses, that period of time could have now been known as the end of the Oil and Gas Golf Tournament.
Lantz hinted there was a chance the tournament very well could have ended during the bust.
“When you come right down to it, everything in Elk City goes along with the [oil and gas] industry, because they use plumbers, electricians, the hospitals… Every part of Elk City is connected in some way with it.”
With the energy companies back in full swing, the golf tournament flourishes as much now as it ever has. There are 72 teams, with 288 players teeing off on shotgun starts for two days of play. According to current tournament chairman Debbie Smoot, there are 30-35 four-man teams on the waiting list to play.
The teams will be broken down into four flights on Saturday, and players will be ranked in the flights according to skill level. The purses in each flight are $1000 for first place, $700 for second, and $500 for third. A continued tradition is the ladies luncheon, complete with champagne, music, and a raffle.
For the complete article, pick up a copy of the Friday, June 1 edition of the Daily Elk Citian.