DSC 4116 resized 600Beverly Cobuzzi (left) and Mary Murphy encouraged golfers at the New Seabury Club to donate to HAC’s shelter programs during a Closest-to-the-Pin contest earlier this summer. This year they helped raise over $1,400 for HAC.

The first weekend of June was picture perfect, the kind that reminds people of why they live and vacation on Cape Cod.

 Of course the seasonable weather made it ideal to be outdoors, whether it be at the beach or in one’s own backyard. A small contingent of Cape Codders took to the New Seabury Country Club in Mashpee, but not for the reasons you may think.

Instead of playing golf this group was there to oversee a Closest-to-the-Pin contest that serves as an annual fundraiser for Housing Assistance Corporation (HAC).

Since 1993 nearly $200,000 has been raised by New Seabury along with several other courses – this year the Captains Golf Course in Brewster, and the Woods Hole Golf Club also participated – to help fund HAC’s shelter programs as well as its housing programs.

So at 7 on a sunny Saturday morning at the beginning of June, Carol Stenberg and Mary Murphy, both members of the New Seabury Country Club, set up two pop-up tents, a few chairs and some signage at the 11th holes of the club’s Dunes Course and its scenic Ocean Course.

There they encouraged golfers to donate $10 to participate in the contest which featured an array of prizes donated by local businesses including round trip tickets on Cape Air/Nantucket Airlines, a free round of golf at the Wianno Club, membership to Sandwich’s Heritage Museums & Gardens and gift certificates to Peking Palace in Falmouth, Puritan Clothing in Mashpee and Uncle Bill’s Country Store in North Falmouth.

Those with a hole-in-one would win a free set of Cobra steel-shafted irons compliments of the competition’s sponsor Cape & Islands Golf Shop. A similar prize has been up for grabs in the past. None have been lucky to claim it though last year one player “missed the hole by this much,” Murphy said, holding her thumb and forefinger apart slightly.

For the past two decades Murphy has served as the volunteer coordinator for the event, but this year passed the figurative clubs to Stenberg whose leadership role has expanded in recent years.

This year the two were joined by friends and fellow members of the club in encouraging players to enter the contest. A handful of those that did so gave more than the minimum donation, ranging from $25 to $50. 

At the Ocean Course Murphy and Beverly Cobuzzi, who volunteered to assist with the event, spoke of the importance of each donation, regardless of the amount. “This goes to help the homeless,” Cobuzzi said.

“And they need it,” Murphy added. “It is terrible for anyone to go through that.”

Nancy Noonan, who helped Stenberg at the par 3 159-yard 11th hole on the Dunes Course, agreed with that sentiment. “A lot of people think that Cape Cod is just a vacation destination,” Noonan said. “But events like this are important because there are a lot of people in need and there is real poverty on the Cape.”