Ballarat hosts charity golf day

FUN: Cricketing great Dean Jones was among the celebrities at the Ballarat Golf ClubCRICKETERS, football stars, and even the odd comedian all came together for a different game yesterday – golf.The celebrity fundraising golf day was part of the Great Vic Trek for Yooralla and was held at the Ballarat Golf Club.Cricketers Dean Jones and Rodney Hogg, footballers Simon Madden, Doug Hawkins and Scott Cummings, Ballarat’s Steve Moneghetti, former Hey, Hey It’s Saturday funnyman John Blackman and Sam Newman impersonator Andrew Startin took to the green for the event.Event organiser Rod Loader said the golf day was one of a series of events raising money for the charity.”It’s all about going out and having a bit of fun, having a game of golf and coming back for an auction and dinner,” he said.”Then from here the trek continues to Hamilton, and each day there’s been different modes of transport.”Today (Sunday) they’re riding in beautiful old hot rods and there will be some more biking, cycling, walking and running.”The trek began in Melbourne on December 6 and will cover 1800km through 200 Victorian towns before finishing at the MCG on Boxing Day.The aim is to raise about $500,000 for disability service provider Yooralla, which supports more than 30,000 Victorians each year.Cricket legend Dean Jones said the trek had raised more than $250,000 so far.”They’re quite addictive these things. They’re a bit weird and wonderful,” he said.”You meet some great people and raise a bit of money.”Country people have been brilliant, really compassionate and raised a lot of money.”Three golfers arrived in style yesterday as they were flown in by helicopter from Melbourne.The trio had won the trip in an auction from a fundraising event as part of the trek.Ballarat Golf Course PGA professional Dominic Azzopardi said it was the first time a helicopter had landed at the new course.”It’s great to support a charity like Yooralla. When we were asked to be involved we were really happy,” he said.”It’s great to have some of the celebrity golfers here. It’s obviously good exposure for the club having golfers of that calibre playing here today.”We used to have a really big celebrity Pro-Am for a number of years, and people like Dean Jones and John Blackman both played.”I’d say they’d be very pleased with our new golf course, they’ll find it a lot more challenging.”
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