A SUCCESS STORY In the summer of 1997 a group of gals at the Edmonton SUN newspaper in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada formed a club for lady golfers. Once a week we would get together at different clubs throughout the city and golf. The camaraderie was great – the golfing not so great – but, we enjoyed ourselves tremendously. We all agreed that it was a lot more fun golfing with all women then with men, who tended not to give much credit to a female golfer. (How times have changed!!) After the first year we discussed the idea of holding a ladies only golf tournament – they are a fairly rare occurrence – as male golfers dominate most charity tournaments. We approached the Edmonton Sun Publisher, Craig Martin, and after explaining our idea, he gave us his full support and that of the newspaper. We were ecstatic!! At the time we had about 20 ladies in the club and we eagerly set to work organizing our inaugural tournament. The first thing we had to do was choose a charity to sponsor. This came fairly easy, as we were all women and we wanted to do something for women. Our charity of choice was the Lurana Shelter, a home for victims of violence, administered by the Franciscan Sisters Benevolent Society. The President of the society, Sister Mary Helena Sproule, gladly welcomed our support – though somewhat tentatively, as this was a new venture for them also. Working with her and her staff has been a reward in itself, as we learned about all the caring and compassion that they show to each and every woman and child who come to them for help. Sister Mary Helena has now gone on to her heavenly reward, but the friendships we have formed with each and everyone of the Sisters, including current Board Chair Sister Lucinda May Patterson, will last forever. Their selfless giving that is never ending is truly a gift from GOD. We chose this charity, because the rate of violence and sexual abuse towards women, and children is far too rampant. As a media company, we felt we could bring some much needed awareness to this blight which has no boundaries in our society. We chose the name “The Tiara Golf Classic & Auction.” Our motto was “Women doing for Women – and while a day of golf and friendship is the immediate goal of the Tiara Golf Classic, the long term plan is to do something for our community.” Being as how our golfers would be all ladies, we set out to stage an event filled with fun and elegance – no beans, steak and beer dinners for our guests. It had to be wine, chicken cordon bleu, linen tablecloths, and prizes geared toward women. We added a silent auction just for fun, because we know how much ladies love to shop. Our fellow workers who expected us to raise about $3500 gave us lots of encouragement. Out of a full slate of a possible 144 golfers, we registered 108 our very first year. We had a beautiful sunny day and everyone raved about all the fun they had. They loved the elegance and the excitement we created and we received numerous letters of “Thanks and Congratulations.” At the end of the day, we wrote our very first cheque to the Lurana Shelter for $10,165.00. Our expectation had been exceeded threefold.


Sadly, our tournament Chair, Anne Alexander, a fashion writer with the SUN newspaper, developed cancer and was unable to attend our first event , passing away a few short months later. We spent some fun time with her, sitting on her bed at the Cross Cancer hospital looking at the dozens and dozens of pictures that we took. Now – each year we present a special award in Anne’s memory to the lady who “most personifies team spirit in the face of all duffs, sand traps, water holes and rough spots.” The award is called the Anne Alexander Memorial Award and is sponsored by her partner of many years – Holger Pedersen – owner of Stony Plain Recording Studios. This award is the most treasured presentation of the day for the ladies. The second year we registered 136 golfers, the third year we had 144 and the 5th year we increased it to 164 to try and accommodate all the ladies who wished to support the Lurana Shelter through the Tiara Classic & Auction. Our silent auction is an eclectic array of items ranging from autographed sports memorabilia, weekend spa excursions, dinners, artwork, home décor, ladies fashions and even items for the men and children in our lives Our major sponsor is Independent Jewellers, the largest mega jewelry store in Canada. Independent Jewellers sponsors a registration gift for each and every one of the ladies. The golfers also receive a first tee gift from the Edmonton SUN that is waiting for them on their golf carts. They are served with a beautifully prepared full breakfast buffet sponsored by Edmonton Motors, lunch on the course and an elegant dinner after the tournament is over. When they come in for dinner, they are presented with dinner gifts at the table. The auction has become the major source of funds raised, reflecting the quality and style of items offered. Almost every year we give away a trip for two and we have numerous raffles making it fun for everyone to participate in. We have succeeded in making this a very special day for the ladies, and we have become the premier ladies charity tournament in the city, and the province of Alberta. In 2007, we began using themes for the golf tournament, with not only the ladies dressing up – but decorating their carts too – in the race to win the Best Themed Team. We have been fortunate over the years to have the support of several Honourary Chairs, with current Chair - Sharon Mallon - former host of the CFCW Morning Show. The ambiance, elegance and fun keep the ladies coming back year after year. We welcome new golfers and sponsors each year, and are grateful for the generous support of long time golfers and sponsors. The work at the Lurana Shelter is vital to the many women and children who suffer domestic violence. The funds raised at the Tiara Classic & Auction are instrumental in providing psychological care for the children - calming their fears, teaching them how to be safe in times of turmoil...and that it is never okay to hit. There is still much more to be done. A twenty-one day Domestic Violence Program, includes sheltering as a component. This program operates at a confidential, high security complex for women with or without children fleeing domestic violence and abuse. Alternatives to living with violence are explored with both women and their children... About Us Lurana Shelter The main objective of Lurana Shelter is to facilitate empowerment of the women and children we serve by: • encouraging information based decision-making • increasing awareness of the cycle of violence and the effects of abuse • working to reduce the problematic symptoms experienced by child witnesses • strengthening the relationship between the child and the non-abusive parent • encouraging positive behavior patterns and attitudes in the children • helping mothers attain the tools that will enable them to build a safe, nurturing environment for their children Have a Gentle Day! Sister Lucinda Board of Directors Honorary Chair Hello, my name is Sharon Mallon and I’m proud to serve as the honorary chairman for the Tiara Classic. Our annual golf tournament has become one of my favorite events of the year. It’s a day where a group of like minded individuals get together for a fabulous tournament with the BEST LOOT BAGS ON THE PLANET! We also laugh ourselves silly!! That’s the great part. Unfortunately, the reason we do it is truly heartbreaking. The tournament is held each year to raise money for the Lurana Shelter, a safe haven for victims of domestic abuse. Detectives who investigate these crimes say they’re among the most horrific they deal with. We CAN help. We can report any such abuse, and we can raise money to help those who are among society’s most vulnerable.
Retired CFCW/K-97 Broadcaster
For Volunteer, Golfer, or Sponsorship Information: Susan Der Director - Tiara Classic & Silent Auction info@tiaraclassic.com Edmonton Sun 10006 106 Street Edmonton, AB T5J 0S1
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