Golfers, volunteers sought for Western Mass Amputee Golf Open

A pub menu, flowers and water feature add to the outdoor patio at Shaker Farms Country Club. (HOPE E. TREMBLAY/THE WESTFIELD NEWS)

WESTFIELD-Shaker Farms Country Club will be the setting for the 2021 Western Mass Amputee Golf Open on Aug. 21.

Proceeds raised from the event will benefit the Eastern Amputee Golf Association scholarship fund, the United States Adaptive Golf Alliance, and Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Nancy and Dan Kotowitz, owners of Shaker Farms, are always seeking ways to help others through their nonprofit Family Resource International.

“Right around the time we were buying Shaker Farms we also had the idea of having a nonprofit to strengthen family ties,” said Nancy Kotowitz, noting they have five children and 11 grandchildren. “Golf was our perfect solution since golf teaches life skills.”

The couple last hosted the golf open in 2019 but were unable to in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We were amazed,” said Nancy Kotowitz. “The participants with one arm or one leg, or no hand, could slam that little white ball straight down the middle of the fairway and then with another shot or two, sink it into the cup.”

Kotowitz added that with the help of prosthetics, the participants “were up and down hills, bending down to place their ball, and thinking nothing of it.”

Kotowitz said Eric Nelson, PGA pro, will be coordinating logistics for the golf open. Additionally, Kotowitz is being assisted by David Bonczek of Hartford, Conn., who is visiting local organizations and businesses in the hopes of garnering raffle prizes for the event. Bonczek has a prosthetic leg due to an infection two years ago.

“I’ve been involved in golf for many years and still enjoy coaching,” said Bonczek. “I also love talking to people about events like this.”

Registration and lunch begins at noon with a shotgun start at 1 p.m. The cost for the 18-hole scramble is $90 per person and $45 for amputee players. The cost includes green fees, cart, lunch and buffet dinner. Prizes and raffles are also planned. For persons only attending the dinner, the cost is $35.

The registration deadline is Aug. 19. 

For more information, call (413) 568-4087 or send an email to [email protected]. Checks can be mailed payable to Shaker Farms Country Club, 866 Shaker Road, Westfield, MA 01085.

Area residents who wish to volunteer during the day’s festivities are also encouraged to send Kotowitz an email to [email protected].

“We are thrilled to host this event again this year,” said Kotowitz. “After all, it is all about helping others and doing your part to give back.”

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