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It’s Annika vs. Brad Faxon at Forsgate Charity Classic


MONROE TOWNSHIP, NJ – Tomorrow, one of golf’s great gems will shine its inimitable version of the Sportlight once more for all the sports world to see. Forsgate Country Club’s fabled Banks Course will host Annika Sorenstam and Brad Faxon in the annual Charity Classic, which benefits both the Forsgate and Annika Foundations.

You know the Sportlight – that warm glow we all get from athletic competition at its most virtuous and altruistic as well as at its competitive apex. It’s those magical moments when athletics becomes something far more than a mere game, but becomes a guide, a moral compass, an inspiration. Well mighty Forsgate once again proves its great worth to both golf and to the community with the Charity Classic.

The event, which also works in conjunction with Ken Griffey, Jr.’s Foundation has been a gold standard for generosity on both a local and national level. Since its inception in 2003, the Charity Classic has raised over $250,000 for The Forsgate Foundation, which has distributed the funds to a variety of charitable organizations including: the ANNIKA Foundation, March of Dimes, Special Olympics, Make a Wish, Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Hospital Foundation, among others.

Yes, it’s always fun when the Tour pros show up to give back to the community, but it’s the Banks Course, the last course built by “The Bloodline” – C.B. Macdonald, Seth Raynor, and Charles “Steamshovel” Banks – that makes the event so compelling.

The golf course is a cunning puzzle: fiendishly contoured greens, cavernous bunkers, and uneven lies, each shot requiring careful planning and pin-point execution.

“You have to play smart golf at Forsgate,” said golf architecture expert Jon Kulok. “Mistakes are dealt with ruthlessly, especially if you are on the wrong side of the green. It’s another example of brilliant architecture by the Bloodline, who designed a great golf course each and every time out.”

“More than that,” continued Kulok, “it’s not just that the course is so great, but the membership all understand the concept of selflessness and stewardship. They put the golf course first and themselves last and that makes it not just a great course, but a great club.”

Moreover, it will be fascinating to see how the world’s best golfers handle the world’s smartest golf course architects. Will the San Andreas Fault-like Biarritz swale in the 17th green bite hard? How will the players fare trying to get to a back pin cut in the horseshoe section of the famous “Short” hole? Will the “Narrows” claim a victim as its forebear at National Golf Links of America does so often?

Indeed, with its world-class golf and first-rate membership, Forsgate is both a great value for families looking for a club for everyone, but also for ardent golfers who want the chance to be a part of history by giving back to the game. At Forsgate, they know it’s not only what they have that makes them great, but what they do for and mean to golf. And that sentiment starts with the Schiavones (the owners) and filters straight through the staff and membership. They’ve all main-lined the ethos of golf’s virtues and can’t wait to share it with the world. Forsgate’s resurgence to not just local, but national prominence is the quintessential golf “feel good” story.

This year, the event will feature an 18 hole competition between foursomes of donors followed by a nine-hole skins match between Sorenstam and PGA Tour star Brad Faxon, who replaced an injured Ken Griffey, Jr. There is also be both live and silent auctions, a Mercedes Benz raffle (sign me up!) and a “Cooking Throwdown” between Sorenstam and a surprise celebrity chef. Gallery tickets are $15.

To learn more about the Forsgate Foundation Charity Golf Classic and the celebrity guests, visit www.forsgatefoundation.org or call 732-656-8911.