WARSAW – What’s a little rain on the parade? In what has been and likely will continue as ‘The show must go on’, the third running of the Sweet & Sassy Golf Classic did its best Saturday.
In parts of the usually resilient Rozella Ford golf course, newly formed water hazards from an overnight of heavy rain still didn’t stall the annual golf fundraiser as rain continued to fall into Saturday morning. And as its namesake, Scott Bibler, it wasn’t always perfect, but it still put a smile on everyone’s face.
“We’ve just been patient and working with Jeff Johnson and Taylor Goshert to make sure the course is in good, working condition and ready to go,” said event organizer Tyler Boganwright. “We had to wait it out a little (Saturday morning), we pushed the start time back a little to help the course clear.”
The golf outing, held in honor of the late Bibler, is a Tippecanoe Valley-heavy promoted event, but does draws people in who knew Bibler, which numbers in the thousands. The event noted near 50 teams played Saturday despite the weather and several others donated through business or personal contributions. The Sweet & Sassy is designed to help kids in the Valley community through scholarships and support.
Working with the Kosciusko County Community Fund, there is over $105,000 available for scholarships, to which the Scott ‘Bibs’ Bibler Memorial Scholarship Fund creates a pair of $2,000 scholarships for students from the county looking to pursue a career in education.
In its mission statement, the Bibs is created to “enhance the lives of youth in our community through a faith centered approach to addressing emotional and psychological needs.”
“The Valley community has been amazing as usual,” said Stephanie Bibler, Scott’s wife. “We don’t have any set goals. As long as the interest level is there and the support keeps coming, we’ll keep doing it.
Added Boganwright, “There are teams here that have traveled a long way just to play in Scott’s honor. Most of the teams out here would be here rain or shine. If it was snowing, they would still be here for Scott. Former players, students, friends, they would be here for Scott no matter what.”
The golf itself had several perks on the course. Boganwright pointed out there were hole-in-prizes that included a pontoon boat, a golf cart, a UTV and even beer for life. Gifts for longest putt, longest drive and a Splash For Cash challenge added some flavor.
The top team for Saturday’s event was captained by Jon Parker, with Chad Brouyette’s afternoon team taking second place. The closest to the pin on No. 2 was by Chandra Kline and on No. 5 was David Beyers. The longest drive on No. 7 was Scott Finney and on No. 14 was Joe Stanley. The 50/50 winner was Jason Timmerman.
One new add that Stephanie Bibler was proud to announce was Bib’s Billfold. Of the 2018 proceeds, half of the total will go into a fund that will go toward immediate student needs in the Valley system. Much like Scott’s generous heart for those who needed help, the virtual wallet takes money out of a proverbial back pocket – or Bib’s Billfold – to lessen the burden for those in need. Tabulations as of Sunday night had Boganwright and the committee estimating that over $25,000 was raised to donate to Bibs Billfold.
“If little Johnny wants to play football but can’t afford cleats and the coach sees a need, they can come to us and we can make that happen,” Stephanie said. “Hopefully that can satisfy some of the needs in our school system. Other money can be accessed by teachers and coaches and they can request financial help if they need things in the classroom or somewhere else.
“Scott was quick to get out his wallet when a kid didn’t have lunch money or needed gym shoes or something. That’s where the idea stemmed from.”
Stephanie, who was camped at the Splash For Cash tent near the clubhouse, was just grateful for another opportunity to oversee good people doing good things. Just as the legend continues to grow for her late husband.
“If I’ve learned anything in the past three years, it’s that we can’t control things, that’s in the hands of the Lord,” Stephanie said. “We can’t control the weather. The staff has been great here. The people that came to play have been patient with us. Jeff has been great in allowing us to get out on the course and do this. I guess I feel bad that it rained, but we’re still out here having fun doing it.”