All Fore Charity

Story Submitted (mtfrontdesk@mountaintimes.com)



Article Published: Aug. 2, 2012 | Modified: Aug. 24, 2012
All Fore Charity

Golfers are lining up for this year’s Casa Rustica Charity Golf Tournament, set for Aug. 22 and 23.
Photos submitted



While Casa Rustica has shared the tradition of Italian-American cuisine with Boone for 31 years, it has also been sharing the tradition of charity for five years.

Casa Rustica’s sixth annual Charity Golf Tournament, in collaboration with RedTail Mountain Golf Club in Mountain City, Tenn., is scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 22, and Thursday, Aug. 23. Registration costs are $125 per person and $600 per team, and all the proceeds go to charity after the costs, which Casa Rustica owner Rick Pedroni said are minor.

Pedroni said there is still room for anywhere between 40 and 80 golfers, as of press time.

This year’s beneficiary of the money raised is the High Country Caregivers Foundation, a nonprofit group dedicated to giving caregivers a break from helping their loved ones through voucher programs, strictly run on donations.

“It just really amplifies the community involvement and the collaboration,” Dr. Carol Berns, the foundation’s current president, said. “It’s not just another organization to give $10. It really changes lives.”

According to the foundation, High Country Caregivers has awarded 212 $500 vouchers since its establishment in 2007.

Pedroni, owner of Casa Rustica for the past 11 years and a golfer himself, first sponsored a charity through the restaurant after Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf coast in 2005, with the support of his wife, Sysco Foods, Coca Cola and other businesses to hold a spaghetti lunch.

“I think we raised $5,000 in an afternoon, and I was like, ‘Hey, you know, if we can do this and this support is out there, then we need to do something bigger,’” he said. “And that’s where the golf tournament came about.”

With $60,000 raised in the last five years, Pedroni looks to raise $15,000 this year alone.
“Our goal has always been to try to get to $15,000,” he said. “That’s always our goal. I see that happening.”

New to this year’s event is the way it’s set up. In the past, Pedroni held the tournament during the day and had the party, dinner and raffle that night.

Tee times have been split between 8:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. – and a lunch in between – to accommodate the amount of golfers he anticipates, based on how many have signed up already and last year’s attendance. Gift certificates to RedTail Mountain, with the amount still to be decided, will be given to the top three teams in the tournament.

Additionally, the dinner and raffle will be held at Appalachian State University’s Kidd Brewer Stadium club level (the fifth level), with food provided by Casa Rustica with the help of Sysco Foods and US Foods. Golf tournament participants can bring a guest to the dinner at no additional cost.
The raffle, Pedroni said, is sponsored by Bridgestone Golf and is also accepting gift certificates from businesses in the area.

“We’ll have somewhere between $5 and $8,000 worth of stuff to give away – clubs, bags and all sorts of stuff,” he said.

Pedroni is also looking for volunteers to help with the dinner at the stadium, as well as witnessing hole in ones on the course and handing out lunches to the golfers.

For more information on the tournament, visit http://www.castarustica1981.com. To participate or volunteer, contact Pedroni at (828) 406-7085.

For more information on the High Country Caregiver Foundation, visit http://www.highcountrycaregiverfoundation.org.

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